Feasting at the Ex: nine foods that stand out (for various hilarious reasons) at the Canadian National Exhibition

Feasting at the Ex: nine foods that stand out (for various hilarious reasons) at the Canadian National Exhibition

The Food Building beckons (Image: Ian Muttoo) 

Since the kickoff of the 132nd edition of the Ex, deep-fried butter has dominated CNE-related headlines. There’s no doubt that it’s worth trying (we thought it tasted like a doughnut), but we felt there were other artery-clogging delights that were being overshadowed. We found eight other foods that equally piqued our interest, either because they’re the last thing we’d expect to see at the midway or because of their curious ability to make us feel full just by looking at them.

Here they are, with a quick thumbs-up or thumbs-down rating »

Chocolate-covered bacon
What is it?
Strips of greasy bacon smothered in bittersweet chocolate.
Tastes like:
A child’s idea of what breakfast should be.
Price:
$5 for six slices (it’s really three slices cut in half, tax included).
Where to find it:
The Sweet Treats concession stand at the midway (near the Canadian Forces display).
Rating:
Thumbs-down.

Twinkie log
What is it? A Twinkie dipped in chocolate and rolled in chopped nuts.
Tastes like:
A cake version of a Nestle Drumstick.
Price:
$5 (tax included).
Where to find it:
The Sweet Treats concession stand at the midway (near the Canadian Forces display).
Rating: Thumbs-up.

99-cent pasta
What is it? Al dente pasta and watery tomato sauce.
Tastes like:
Pasta that cost 99 cents.
Price:
$1.12 with tax (in other words, it’s not really 99 cents).
Where to find it:
The Primo booth in the Food Building.
Rating: Thumbs-down.

Foot-long corn dog
What is it? A wiener dipped in corn batter and fried.
Tastes like:
Overcompensation.
Price:
$6 (tax included).
Where to find it:
The corn dog stand at the midway, next to the Crazy Mouse roller coaster.
Rating: Thumbs-up.

Deep-fried mac-and-cheese
What is it? Balls of peppery macaroni and cheese that are fried deeply.
Tastes like:
Needs ketchup. Lots of it.
Price:
$5 (plus tax, though it’s enough for two people).
Where to find it:
The Mac and Cheesery stand in the Food Building.
Rating: Thumbs-up.

Taco in a Bag
What is it? A bag of Doritos cut open and filled with lettuce, beef, onions, cheese, salsa and sour cream.
Tastes like: Dinner in a dorm room.
Price: $6 (tax included).
Where to find it: The Taco in a Bag booth (connected to Bouchard’s Poutinery) in the Food Building.
Rating: Thumbs-up (no really!)

Beef flank and rare beef noodle soup
What is it? A bowl of traditional Vietnamese noodle soup.
Tastes like: Something healthy, for a change.
Price: $6 a bowl (plus tax).
Where to find it: The Pho 88 booth in the Food Building.
Rating: Thumbs-up.

Siu mai
What is it? Traditional-ish Chinese dim sum.
Tastes like:
Theme park dim sum. We’re almost sure it’s water chestnuts and not Styrofoam in the pork.
Price:
$2.50 for four pieces (plus tax).
Where to find it:
The dim sum booth in the Food Building.
Rating: Thumbs-down.

Deep-fried butter
What is it? Balls of butter dipped in batter and fried, then drizzled with chocolate, strawberry, caramel and vanilla sauce
Tastes like: Hot Timbits. We expected to bite into a gooey, greasy mess, but the butter itself had disappeared. Good for the squeamish, bad for the gluttonous masses hoping to brag about their culinary adventures.
Price: $5 for four pieces (tax included).
Where to find it: The Sweet Treats concession stand at the midway (near the Canadian Forces display).
Rating: Thumbs-up.