1. Roasted Corn

Maybe it’s the enduring agricultural history of the Northwest Washington Fair (Aug. 13–18), or its frozen-in-time vibe. Of course, it could be the smell that hits you as soon as you enter the grounds. Whatever it is, there’s nothing like fair food, and no better time to have a cheat day when you eat pretty healthy for most of the year. We’ve come up with five can’t-miss items, starting with roasted corn. Dipped in butter and salted, it tastes as fresh as if it just got pulled from a nearby field. Which it probably has. One place to get it is A Roasted Development, in the Grandstand Area, between the grandstand and the horse barns, where most fair food booths are found.

2. Curly Fries

Mount Baker Toppers, a barbershopper acappella group, serves the kind of curly fries that’ll make you sing. A typical
serving comes in the shape of an outsized, glistening brick of wondrously tangled potatoes, salted and crisped just right. You can watch potatoes get peeled, sliced, fried and seasoned. If you have good timing, the guys will harmonize as your fries sizzle. Find them behind the grandstand.

3. Corn Dog

The quintessential fair food, the hand-dipped version sold on the grounds here bears little resemblance to that in your grocer’s freezer. A hot dog encased in cornmeal batter and deep fried, the best corn dog is crispy on the
outside, steaming on the inside, topped with mustard and served on a stick. We like the ones at The Ramblin’ Gourmet in the grandstand area.

4. Donuts

Happiness is a warm paper bag of fresh-made mini donuts, sprinkled in cinnamon sugar. Lucky for you, two stands sell them just inside the fair’s main entrance. You can’t go wrong with Poffertjes, a tradition in Dutch-influenced Lynden, or Sugar ‘n Spice Mini Donuts, a few steps away.

5. Reuben

When you think of fair food, you don’t think “Reuben.” It’s not fried or served on a stick. But this sandwich of corned beef, Swiss cheese, bacon, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing served on marbled rye, and from Feast’s food truck parked in the grandstand area, is so good you might forget it doesn’t belong.

For more like this, check out our Five Faves Scenic Drives here.

"Happiness is a warm paper bag of fresh-made mini donuts, sprinkled in cinnamon sugar."