As a historically-confirmed sucker for infomercial-type gadgets at the PNE Marketplace (anyone need an orange shammy? apparently, I do), I haven’t been back to the PNE in years. But this year is special. It’s the 100-year anniversary of the Pacific National Exhibition and the lovely miss Nansiepants invited me along to the PNE’s first annual Foodie Tweetup. You eat, you tweet. Here’s what we ate…
There’s a surprisingly wide variety of food options at the PNE — everything from curry to crepes, from perogies to spring rolls — but the dear 黃厚巽 decided very quickly on the Deluxe Cheeseburger at Jimmy’s Lunch. Since 1929, this family-owned and operated food vendor offers this humble, yet famous, cheeseburger filled with fried onions. Heaps and heaps of fresh chopped onions get seasoned and cooked down slowly into a simmering, savory and caramelized mush. It makes the burger so much more than what you’d expect.
For me, I have a weakness for bratwurst, sausage, hot dogs… and I always think back to that intensely tasty sausage and potato dish that I had at the Heineken House during the Olympics, so that led me straight to the German Sausage Haus where I had $10 of a very tender bratwurst smothered in quite a mild tasting sauerkraut and complemented with some potato salad. I could eat this everyday if it promised not to make me fat.
Trying to decide what to have next was hard. But the deep fried jelly beans and oreo cookies at the Funnel Cake place were too unusual sounding not to try. The jelly beans were like the little tiny expensive Jelly Belly ones, clumped together, covered with funnel cake batter and deep fried. I think there’s a video somewhere on Youtube now of me eating one of these things. Not flattering, I’m sure. But yes, some of the jelly beans melted into a syrupy, mushy mess and other jelly beans stayed intact. In any case, it was like eating a golf ball made of pure sugar. Very yummy, but I couldn’t have more than half of one! So… bring your friends.
The deep fried oreo, on the other hand, was really interesting. It tasted almost like smoked chocolate if there was ever such a thing. Interesting enough to me to eat at least two, I think.
The wonderful organizers of the tweet up, Melissa Guillergan and Lauren Wainwright were so sweet to send us all home with some prizes and a candy apple for each of us! I’ve met craft and knit bloggers before, but never hung out with a group of food bloggers. It’s just always cool and inspiring to see people get excited things that they enjoy. There is indeed a video by Vancouver 24Hrs if you want to see what we were up to. And a few of my photos from the tweet up are here on flickr.
On a sugar high and narrowly escaping the purchase of a $100 Thunderhead shower head, we headed home under the sparkly lights of the fair, accompanied by the roar and screams from the rickity wooden Coaster. And as my wise friend, Jen, reminded me this morning, “The PNE is, after all, all about the food.”