I talked about trying them during my live broadcasts all weekend, but it wasn't until Saturday night after I'd brought Montgomery Gentry onstage at Bloomin' Fest that I finally had time to sneak away and try the fair fare.

The goodie that first caught my eye was the Brisket Fries from one of the food trucks.  I had to have passed by that truck 20 times Friday and Saturday.  I'd all but given up on getting to try it until I remembered that I had two things I hadn't had up to that point in the weekend:  Time and cash.

My wife spent Friday night as the carrier of the cash, but I was too busy most of the time to stop and smell the roses (or devour the trans-fat).  While I was standing in line I added another new delicacy to my order in the form of mashed potato balls.  These were ball-shaped goodies made out of mashed potatoes and stuffed with steak & cheese before being deep-fried.


There are a lot of times in life when the real thing doesn't come close to living up to your own expectations.  Over the years I've been able to kill any expectations of goodness coming my way, but I have to admit that I really built this up over the course of 36 hours at Bloomin' Fest.

Fortunately, and unlike college and "The Walking Dead", this lived up to my own personal expectations.  And then some.  I was in taste bud heaven.  I was beginning to regret the decision I'd made to bring my 12-year-old son, Tyler, in on the feast.  I brought him along so I wouldn't feel the shame of personally finishing both dishes.  "Tyler and I ate $18 worth of fair food" comes with less shame than "I ate 3,200 calories of fair food all by myself".