The OC Fair is hosting “One Big Party” from July 17th to August 16th in celebration of its 125th anniversary with culinary creations to suit all palates. Foodies can enjoy wild and unique new fare mixed in with the traditional fair food while culinary enthusiasts can enjoy a variety of competitions and exhibits highlighting baking, preserving and cocktail-making. Food-related features include:
- 125 Ways to Graze celebrates the OC Fair’s 125th anniversary with a variety of new options inspired by the number “125” including $1.25 combo add-ons or value-sized portions of menu items at reduced prices. Additionally, select vendors will offer a just-for-2015 luxury menu item for $125 including caviar-topped Deep Fried Twinkie and the Chuckwagon BBQ Feast with enough barbecued fare to feed the whole family.
- New Fried Food Items include Deep-Fried Starbucks from Bacon A-Fair; Deep Fried Slim Fast Bar and Fried Peanut Butter Pickle Dog from Chicken Charlie’s; and Deep-Fried Birthday Cake and Deep-Fried Pizza from Apple Fries.
- New Unique Food Items include Fireball Donut and Samoa Donut from Texas Donuts; Chocolate-Covered Pork Rinds and Wasabi Bacon Bombs from Bacon A-Fair; $125 Caviar Twinkie from Chicken Charlie’s; Cuban Fusion Burger from Grant’s Tasti Burgers; and Frosted Flake Chicken Fingers from Pickle O’Pete’s.
- $2 Taste of Fair Food, held every Friday from Noon-4 p.m., offers Fairgoers the chance to taste Fair food for $2 per item. Fun-sized samples include funnel cake, tri-tip, lemonade, cinnamon rolls, corn dogs, gelato, and more. Fair admission required.
- OC Brew Hee Haw, a craft beer roundup, is July 18-19 and will bring some of the best local craft beers to OC Fairgoers for three sessions of beer tastings, demonstrations and exhibits. Visit ocbrewheehaw.com for details and tickets. Separate ticket required.
- Chef Challenge will put talented culinary professionals in competition against each other with a themed cook-off every Thursday at 5 p.m.: July 23 (Earth), July 30 (Water), August 6 (Air) and August 13 (Fire). Free with Fair admission.
- Special Culinary Contests include Salad Daze (July 25), Dip Into Fun (August 1) and Ultimate Tailgate Dish (August 8). It is free to compete and participants who register by the Wednesday before the contest will receive free Fair admission to watch the live judging. For a complete list, visit ocfair.com/competitions.
- Daily Culinary Demonstrations can be enjoyed for free in the OC Promenade throughout the run of Fair. Featured demonstrators include Blackmarket Bakery, Chef Ray Duey (food sculptor), Chef Ernest Miller (food preservation and beer making), Greggy Soriano (cake decorator) and Shaile’s Edible Art (sugar art.)
- Featured Culinary Exhibits will look at the best parts of a party: Cake & Cocktails. In the new Cakeology exhibit, Fairgoers can learn the origins and history of cake from baking to decorating. This creative and interactive exhibit will offer the essentials of cake-making with fun historical facts. The new SIP – Raise Your Spirits Exhibit looks at the history of alcoholic beverage and barware from punch to cocktails. Gabrielle Dion and her staff from The Mixing Glass will show tips and tricks on craft cocktails during daily demonstrations.
- Award-Winning Wines are available by the taste or the glass in the Wine Courtyard throughout Fair and on weekends wine-lovers can learn more about the various varietals of wine during the Orange County Wine Society’s Wine Seminars (most require an additional fee).
- One Big Party Eating Contests are held daily in the Explorium: Destination Kids tent at 6:30 p.m. Participation is free with Fair admission.
It’s “One Big Party” for the 2015 OC Fair, July 17-August 16, as it celebrates its 125th anniversary with 23 days of food, rides, shopping, exhibits and animals. Enjoy world-renowned performers in the Pacific Amphitheatre and exciting events in The Hangar and Action Sports Arena. The Fair is open Wednesday-Sunday. Concert tickets, action sports reserved seats, single-day general admission and the popular Super Pass are available for purchase online at ocfair.com or from the on-site Box Office. Free parking and shuttle service are available on Saturdays and Sundays from the Experian parking structure located off the Bristol St. exit of the 405 freeway. Also, download the free OC Fair iPhone and Android apps available this summer.