We found ourselves at the fair thrice last week. Other than the holidays, it's the only time we can justify indulgent eating. What made it more enticing was our OC Fair contact navigating the endless stalls to some exceptional vendors. Tasti Chips made their short list.
At first glance you may be confused. Are we really singing the praises of potato chips? On the surface, yes. But it's how they are made which makes all the difference.
Using white rose potatoes, our crunchy snack is fried to order. Every time someone requests a batch they can watch a cook drop it like it's hot. No smoke and mirrors here, folks. Yet that's the beauty of the chip: it's piping hot and fresh.
Of the condiment options, melty cheese contains bacon, but adding both chili and cheese (while a meal in itself) will equate to a goopy mess. Add jalapenos for some spice. Think of it as the difference between a plate of diner hash cooked up on a griddle and cranking open a can of the corned beef variety; both serve a purpose, but it's FUNdamentally better made from scratch.
Tasti Chips has two locations at the OC Fair: at Centennial Farm, next door to Lengendary Gelato (get the peach champagne!) and over in the Livestock area.
If you are planning a visit Friday morning, you'll love this hint: The Girl Scouts are handing out free cookies to the first 100 guests through the gate! You're welcome.
Also, if you're a Dinner/Restaurant: Impossible fan like yours truly, Robert Irvine will be there Thursday afternoon doing a cooking demo. So. Awesome.
A contributing writer for OC Weekly, Anne Marie freelances for multiple online and print publications, and guest judges for culinary competitions. A Bay Area transplant, she graduated with a degree in Hospitality Management from Cal Poly Pomona. Find her on Instagram as brekkiefan.