Toast to Minnesota’s winemakers and discover what’s new on the Minnesota wine scene at “Minnesota Wine Country” at the State Fair.
Award-winning and best selling wines from across the state pair with a wine-inspired gourmet foods menu from Mintahoe Catering, plus entertaining and educational presentations by top local food and wine experts, as well as free music on the patio.
Sip and sample wines with a flight (menu below), by the glass – or try it in a wine smoothie, or port wine ice cream.
There are a number of new to the menu food items this year, including one of the Fair’s “top new foods”, candied bacon doughnut sliders with port wine chocolate sauce — we had the opportunity to dig into these before the fair, and give the candied bacon our hearty approval (I’d just love to have a plate of that stuff).
Sunday, August 28th at 3:30pm you can catch me, Lauren Voigt from Minnesota Uncorked speaking about wine trails and tastings across the state.
In all, there are a dozen regional wines with wine, or wine-related food items at the fair — you can get the scoop on that in our Minnesota State Fair Wine Guide.
5 Courses at Wine Country
Every year I go to the fair, afterward I reflect on my empty wallet and a good time had — and think, “wow, but for that kind of money, I could have gone out for dinner. A nice dinner.” Fair food isn’t cheap…
I had a chance to sample the foods at Minnesota Wine Country before the fair, which are put together by the chefs at Mintahoe Catering. Fresh, high-quality ingredients and fantastic flavors that could otherwise be spoiled by sloppy greasy fair foods on your palette. If you’re looking for a nice dinner, and you just happen to find yourself at the fair – head over to Minnesota Wine Country and give this a try. This menu could be shared between two.
Wine Fried Kalettes $9
Brianna (Garvin Heights Vineyards (Winona) $7
The Kalettes are tempura-battered kale, deep fried to a lovely crisp like a kale chip. The kale, delightfully nutty and served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce.
Sriracha Cheese Balls $9
(?) Sogn Blanc, Cannon River Winery (Cannon Falls), $7 (?)
I don’t know how they did it, but somehow they deepfried something reminiscent of the cheese sauce on Mac n Cheese, but blended with a lovely Sriracha. Just taking a stab at this wine pairing, hey we’re #mnwinetravelexperts, not #mnwinepairing experts. If someone else has a suggestion here we’d LOVE to hear it! 🙂 Basically, these cheese balls were so tasty you have to have them. And, figure hey- drink some wine, too.
Salmon & Shrimp Sliders $9
Frontenac, Saint Croix Vineyards (Stillwater), $7
Fresh ground salmon and shrimp combine with with thai curry paste, and dressed with “super slaw”. These tasty sliders come with 3 to an order.
Wine Fried Brie $9
Sparkling Frontenac Rose from Falconer Vineyards (Red Wing) $7
Since this IS the State Fair, we figured why not two fried cheese courses? Plus, they were both too tasty to miss. Delectable brie, fried into a lovely batter and served with a raspberry sauce that has a delightful kick. You’ll appreciate a sip of sparkling Frontenac rose to cool your mouth off after this one.
Candied Bacon Doughnut Sliders $9
Sparkling Apple, Saint Croix Vineyards (Stillwater), $7
The candied bacon has a hint of chili powder and brown sugar – stuffed into doughnut holes that have been sliced open like tiny slider buns, and topped with a drizzle of chocolate port wine sauce. 5 sliders come with the order. Personally, I’d like to just have a huge plate of the bacon…