[event] big bite bacon fest recap
Warning: many, many photos ahead! Many including the holy grail of foods: BACON.
You’ve been warned.
Here’s a non-food photo to warm you up to the onslaught.
Jake and I got to the fair in the mid-afternoon, a little while before the Bacon Fest started. I had skipped lunch and was seriously thinking about getting something else from the fair to tide me over until the fest started. Luckily, I wisely decided to just wait. So… no fair foods this year!
We waited with the other VIP’s for the Bacon Fest to officially open. The nice part about having VIP tickets is that you were granted admission one hour before the general public. This gave us plenty of time to try many samples without having to worry about lines or tables to use. We also got a swag bag that had a “Got Porked” trucker hat, a “Got Porked” chip clip and a plastic Big Bite Bacon Fest mug. VIP’s also got a cushy lounge to hang out in.
The Spud Shack offered up this very first item that we sampled. It was sort of like a tater tot wrapped in bacon with egg. It was like one little wrapped bite of breakfast!
The Driveway Chef was the only booth with neat “bonus” signage. Hello, bacon weave!
The Driveway Chef offered a few things, including these bacon salted tortilla chips. These were really simple – but really good. A nice smoky and salty flavor to go with the fresh, crisp chips.
Bleu Cheese Bacon Blunts were wontons stuffed with blue cheese and bacon and then deep fried. Crispy, creamy, saltiness – all wrapped in one! This was one of my favorite things from the whole event.
Chicken Fried Bacon was the last offering from Driveway Chef. It came with a little cheese sauce. I really enjoyed this one, too. It was actually a little softer than I imagined it would be. I think the coating prevented the bacon from getting super crispy but I still really liked the flavor and the texture. Jake didn’t care for this one as much as me – he let me have the rest of his!
Coops West Texas BBQ had a few offerings to share as well. Above (from top left): Bacon Potato Logs, Spare Rib and Candied Bacon. They also had a pulled pork which I don’t have a photo of. The bacon potato logs pretty much are like potato planks or any wide “fry” but they put their BBQ sauce and ranch on them and that made them gooooooood. The rib was good, too, but the highlight was the candied bacon. It had SO MUCH FLAVOR in it! Chewing on it, it kept punching me in the face with flavors of saltiness, savory and sweet. It was pure bliss. Another favorite!
Farmer John was one of the sponsors of the event and had these little sausages wrapped with jalapeno bacon. I thought these were really, really dry.
Beer and bacon donuts. Whaaaaat.
In addition to all the food, there were also beer samplings. Jake and I tried the Blue Moon Agave Nectar beer which I totally LOVE and the Blueberry Wheat beer from Callahan’s which I was already in love with. So much beer love going on around here.
These bacon donuts are from Donut Bar. The left one is Bourbon Bacon and the right one is Maple Bacon. I liked the bourbon one just a little more. These donut bites still did not convince me that Donut Bar is “all that”.
Nothing Bundt Cakes was also there with their usual samples of marble cake and red velvet cake. I feel like they are at every event! This didn’t have bacon in it. I ate it anyway, though it was completely unexciting in every way.
The Secret Cookie Service was also there with Bacon Chocolate Chip cookies, Mint Chocolate and Cookies and Cream samples. They made little cookies and put them in these little plastic containers which I thought was BRILLIANT because then I could just take them home and eat them later. Which I did. And they were excellent. Good proportion of bacon to chocolate.
These were some fancy pants deviled eggs from The Savage Chef. There’s bacon bits in the devil-y part (err, the filling) and it also had herbs and little fish eggs on top. I *almost* did not eat this because of the fish eggs. But I did. I put it in my mouth! Besides the fish egg part, the rest of it was pretty good. Fanciest deviled eggs I have ever seen. Word.
We had to swing by later to get this other item from the Savage Chef (that I don’t remember the name of). It was like a pork toastada thing – the tortilla was freshly made and tasted wonderful – all of the fresh ingredients on this little number made it a winner for Jake and I as well. Fresh cheese and salsa – very yummy sampling!
Sugar Lab was the only vendor to offer a drink… with a bacon garnish. It was some kind of Italian drink that just tasted like fizzy water to me. The bacon garnish looked pretty cool in the drink… and I tried eating it… and regretted that idea. The bacon was all soggy and picked up some of the fizzy water flavor. Ew.
Sugar Lab also had an awesome bacon granola! But I don’t have a good photo of that. Sad cakes. It was good though. Kind of makes me want to put bacon in my granola now.
La Casa de Los Alambres offered this “Pool Pork Sandwhich” that was made with a homemade BBQ sauce that had bacon in the sauce. There was no actual bacon on this “sandwhich”. I couldn’t detect any bacon flavor, really. The pork was okay, I didn’t find the sauce to be particularly interesting. Don’t these buns looks like pandesal rolls?
The Sea Salt Candy Company offered up samples of their salted caramels and toffees as well as this Bacon Toffee they made for the event. The toffee was excellent – buttery, crunchy, and delicious. There were bits of salt along with the bacon to make for a nice salty-sweet combination.
Smoqued BBQ had a few things to sample at their booth, included spicy bbq chicken, spare rib meat, ham, candied bacon, pulled pork and macaroni and cheese. The chicken was way too spicy for me – a couple of bites and I was out. With no nearby water, I had to make Jake find water for me haha. The macaroni & cheese was okay. The spare rib meat was … okay. The ham was also just okay. The candied pepper bacon was the best of the bunch, but it wasn’t as good as Coop’s. Surprising (to Jake and I) this place won as the fan favorite of the fest. I have no idea why.
Right before the general public was to be let in, we decided to head over to Slater’s 50/50 for their sample. Their booth was the only one with a line during VIP hour since they were creating a little fire in the back of their tent and making the 50/50 burgers fresh.
The 1/4 sized sample was on their pretzel bun with cheese and egg. The 50/50 patty (50% beef, 50% bacon) was quite charred on the outside. I didn’t really care for it all that much. Too much char for me. It just tasted overcooked.
Chicken Charlie’s was also represented at the Bacon Fest with their bacon wrapped deep fried pickle.
I did not even try this since I detest pickles.
Jake did not like it. He said, “Pickles should not be hot.” Ew.
Bacon Jerky! I liked that it still looked like bacon, mostly. Flavor was decent and it was really chewy, just like jerky.
In addition to the french toast bacon cookies, there were also samples of lemon lavender bacon sugar cookie by The Sticky Pig.
These little cups are filled with Brown Butter Bacon Cake from the Trails Eatery. The cake was luscious and moist and had a cream cheese frosting. It was paired with bourbon bacon pecan praline, created a really delicious bite of food. The bacon wasn’t too strong and balanced nicely with the sweetness. Loved, loved, love this!
Caramel popcorn! With some kind of ghost sauce! I think the ghost sauce had bacon in it? Man, I don’t remember.
Brian’s 24 were making bacon waffles on the SPOT. One person handed you your freshly made waffle while another poured some maple syrup on for you. These were pretty good for little mini waffles. The bacon was soft inside of the slightly sweet waffle.
Bacon flavored cotton candy, I will never, ever, ever eat you again.
Betty’s Whole Pie Saloon were offering little pie samples. This place is another company done by the same person who runs Elizabethan Desserts. I didn’t jot down what the samples were exactly – but I believe it was sort of a bacon pecan pie. It was good. I can’t wait to try out Betty’s Whole Pie Saloon when it opens!
The Texas Doughnut people were in here, too, with their crazy giant donuts. This is a tiny, tiny piece of the huge maple bacon donut. The maple was pretty melty and the bacon was pretty limp and soft. Maybe just get the other Texas sized donuts without the bacon…
Badunkachunk Cookies. Looked like they were just serving crumbs to me. I did not care for the samples we got, the cookies tasted a few days old and dried out.
Rubicon Deli offered these Ham, Bacon, Swiss, and Chipotle Sandwich which I was really too full to properly enjoy or even take more than one bite of. Man, it looks delicious though. I bet I would have enjoyed it more if we had swung by there at the beginning instead of the end.
Also: a couple totally got married at the Bacon Fest. The bride walked down the aisle on a bacon runner and they had bacon “roses” and flowers and stuff.
It was a crazy fun good time even though afterwards Jake and I wanted to swiftly fall into a coma. I was then super double extra glad I hadn’t eaten anything else beforehand AND that I had skipped lunch. Despite this crazy onslaught of bacon, I’m *still* not sick of the stuff. There was enough variety to keep my taste buds guessing and happy.
Jake and I also had fun with the props in the photo box. The heart sign I’m holding says “Don’t go bacon my heart!”
If the Big Bite Bacon Fest comes back next year, you should check it out! If you’ve got an extra stomach, some good walking shoes, and don’t eat for a few hours before hand.
* Disclaimer: My VIP tickets to the Big Bite Bacon Fest were complimentary. I was not further compensated for this review. All opinions, quips, and other jargon are fully mine and mine alone.