Geddes, NY – Too often at the New York State Fair we wander from booth to booth, choosing a sandwich from here, a snack from there, and a drink from there, there and there -down.
At the end of the day, we are drunk, but often not satisfied. It’s not that the food isn’t good; it’s just that we had all the elements of a good meal at different times of the day.
Todd Engel, a reader of these daily menus from State Fair, texted me the other night and suggested I try mixing cuisine from two stalls to create an experience, not just a meal. Saturday, I took his advice, and I offer it to you because it turned out to be a great suggestion.
I started with a refrigerated Maine lobster roll from Bold Coast Lobster Co. ($21). The stand is located just at the back of Chevy Court, next to the Dairy Products Building. It’s easy to find as there is always a line that stretches to Chevy Court. Bold Coast also sells a Connecticut roll with hot lobster and butter, but it was hot on Saturday and I had a few hundred yards to walk to reach the meat on this platter.
I rushed to Bosco’s on Restaurant Row, known for its grilled prime rib sandwich ($15). Steve Bosco cooked my steak himself and grilled it until perfectly rare. It took him six minutes. Shawn Halloran was playing his guitar on the next stage, which created an even better atmosphere for this restaurant affair.
The people, the surf and the turf have never been better. And it cost me $31. (Well, it cost me $37 if you count the well-chilled can of Genesee Light I grabbed along the way.)
I cut every piece in the cardboard boat with a plastic knife, and shoved it down my throat with a plastic fork.
And it was good.
No, it was wonderful.
The rest of the menu of the day
I write about food for syracuse.com and The Post-Standard, relying on readers to tell me what’s good in midtown New York. This is exactly what I was counting on during the State Fair. I take your suggestions and highlight the best food and drinks here. If you find something that makes your belly smile, text me (315-382-1984) and I’ll give it a try. I’ll join you for a meal or a drink and pay the bill. As Bluto of “Animal House” said: “Take a brew. Costs nothing. I’m nearing the end of a decent-sized list, and over a dozen readers have accepted the offer for me. I bought four drinks just for Saturday. We had a blast. (One guy turned down the free drink because he insisted his in-laws were getting us all a drink, and he didn’t there was no argument with him.)
Beverage: You better get to the Fair fast. On Saturday, the Dairy Building replaced white milk with strawberries. It drew a crowd. But strawberry milk is not eternal. It’s only available until tomorrow night… when the New York State Fair closes for 11.5 months. It will cost you a quarter of a dollar.
Robert and Donna Leddick drove all the way from Rochester to collect their quarter cups of whole milk. “It’s delicious,” Donna said.
Beer of the day: Unfortunately, it’s time to embrace the fall feeling a bit more. To help us with such an embrace, today we suggest Saranac’s S’More Lager. This surprisingly drinkable lager is campfire in one sip without the smoke in the eye. “And because I couldn’t resist, it comes with a cute and spooky bat and marshmallow,” says Erinn McDowell, the Beer Garden’s top beer researcher. A 12-ounce liquid s’more is $5 today.
>> Detailed daily timetable for Sunday 4 September
>> Noah Thompson, 1 p.m. at Chevy Court
>> NO FRIENDS, 2 p.m. at Chevy Park
>> ERNEST, 6 p.m. at Chevy Court
>> City Girls, 8 p.m. at Chevy Park
Living room basics
Tickets: Admission each day is $3 at the door. Children under 12 are free every day, and those 65 and over get free admission. The Fair does not accept cash at the gates. Buy your tickets in advance on etix or use a credit card at a nearby kiosk.
Hours: Door open at 9 a.m. daily. Buildings are open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekends. Midway closes at 11 p.m. weekdays and midnight on weekends.
Car park: The car parks surrounding the exhibition center can accommodate more than 23,000 vehicles. Parking is $5 (advance sale or EZ-Pass) for all lots. They will not accept cash. (Click here for parking map and directions.)
Other rules: You can bring coolers with food and soft drinks. No pets are allowed, except working or competition dogs. All bags, backpacks, coolers, purses and fanny packs are permitted but subject to search upon entry. You may not bring firearms or other weapons, signs, rollerblades, skateboards, or bicycles onto the field. Visitors are required to wear a shirt and shoes.
State Fair Information Bulletin: Stay up to date with all the New York State Fair news, food, music, hours and more with our free newsletter. Get it in your inbox every 13 days. Register here.
Charlie Miller finds the best of food, drink and fun in central New York. Contact him at (315) 382-1984or by email at [email protected]. You can also find it under @HoosierCuse on Twitter and on instagram. Sign up for his free weekly Newsletter Where Syracuse Eats here.
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