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PNE Food Tour 2022

You can already feel the weather shifting, the nights are getting colder and we are starting to see the the sad an eventual return of fall. Thankfully we have The Fair at the PNE to help lessons the blow. As well as one of my favourite foodie themed events to look forward to every year. This is the highly anticipated PNE media food tour, showcasing all the new and noteworthy vendors and foodstuffs available at this year’s Fair.

So here is the rundown of what you ought to try, as recommend by the PNE marketing team. The most weird and wacky and what has never been seen before. In the order that we have tried them, with my notes on each.

Taco Tigre

The Taco Tigre truck is a great example of the fusion foods the PNE has since been known for. Bringing popular Vietnamese flavours to a Mexican format, we have the Brisket beef pho taco.

Tender slices of beef brisket filled with bean sprouts and hoisin sauce, over a fresh corn tortilla. It tastes just like pho, and is probably the easy version of it you will ever eat.

The Little Donut Bakery

With all the mini donut options available at the PNE, how do you narrow it down? How about with one of the original mini donut families, who originally brought the mini donut to the PNE. They did this by way of the then unique equipment, the only ones to churn them out this small and this many at a time.

And Little Donut Bakery are the only ones to currently offer a Nanaimo bar mini donut. They take their regular mini donuts, but instead of cinnamon and sugar they top it with chocolate syrup, condense milk, and coconut shreds. And boy is it delicious, not as sweet as an actual Nanaimo bar, but with all of the associated flavours.

Açai Dude

For those looking for something a lot more healthier at the PNE, look to this pink pastel trailer giving off California vibes with its surfboard menu. Açai Dude is serving refreshing and healthy smoothie bowls that aren’t only good for you, but are served cold to keep you cool under the sun.

This is their Signature smoothie bowl made with açai, mixed berries, banana, and coconut milk for an extra creamy consistency. It is then topped with fresh fruit and peanut butter, and is one of the prettiest food items at 2022’s PNE.

The owner comes from a social media and marketing background, so was sure to make this and all her other all vegan menu options, as delicious to the eyes, is it is to the mouth. They are also bringing Fair goers the first avocado toast made available to these grounds.

Saltspring Noodle Bar

At this long standing PNE regular noodle truck they are making their classic Asian style noodles more Fair friendly by adding cotton candy. And it is exactly as you think it is, and as it sounds.

Salty and sweet a different way, with a heaping fist full of pink cotton candy topping a box of their teriyaki yakisoba made with crunchy cabbage, bits of chicken, and mushroom. Stir your cotton candy in and let it melt, to get the best taste. It sounds odd, but having tried it, I can tell you that it does work.

Roasted Revolution

It being Chilliwack corn season, this comes at the best time. Serving sweet corn topped 6 different ways, each sounded so good that I wish we got to try them all.

But if you can only pick one, this is their best seller and the one that PNE marketing recommends. And it delivers on what its name promises. Japanese aburi corn flame torched to order with Japanese mayo, cheese, and furikake seasoning. Highly recommend!

Summerland Soft Serve

And one of the stalls I look forward to every year is Summerland Soft Serve, bringing the PNE its first pineapple whip. They are fast becoming well known for their creative soft serve flavours which includes cotton candy and butter beer of years past.

This year it is Mac & Cheese, everyone’s comfort eat made into a cool treat. And as with all their seasonal offerings, they know how to incorporate their flavour inspiration into a sweet dessert. So rest assured it doesn’t taste directly like cheesy pasta, but their rifts on it, instead. It reminds me of the cheesy powder packets of Kraft Dinner. And the more you eat it, the more it tastes like cheese, and the more you may like it. I definitely stamp this one a must try.

Little Coco’s Corn Dogs

One of this year’s trendy snacks is the Korean style corn dog, and Coco’s is bringing it to this year’s PNE. Or at least, their take on the Korean style, cheese stuffed corn dog, but featuring squid ink.

I like how the hot dog’s end is made to look like a squid with hand cut sprawling tentacles. Each wiener is dipped in batter and deep fried golden brown, before getting a sprinkle of seasoning. And yes, you do get a cheese pull out of this one, so have your cameras at the ready. As for taste, you get the sweetness of the corn dog breading, with the salty hotdog, and the sharp cheese. I liked it best with ketchup and mustard.

Curry in a Hurry

Our tour ended at the Curry in a Hurry stall, where PNE show runners presented the owners with a certificate marking their 40 plus year at the Fair, 3 generations later. The PNE prides themselves on hosting family run businesses serving family recipes passed down, and offered to Fair goers with heart and love; and Curry in a Hurry fits the bill.

They are well known for their handmade samosas, made using the family matriarch’s recipe. A classic potato and pea filling with an airy and light extra crispy shell; and served with a tangy chutney dip.

They also have fun masala spiced fries served with a mango aioli that tastes just like mango lassi!

There were many other stalls worth trying and much more food stuffs worth considering, not covered in our guided tour. Here are a few items that caught my attention. A hot Cheetos hot chicken sandwich, hot Cheetos coated corn dog, Oreos stuffed into a donut and glazed with maple and bacon, and deep fried mochi.

But I couldn’t pass up on the pop rocks fried chicken from the Chicky chicken stand. It is exactly as you think. Nuggets of deep fried popcorn chicken toss in a sweet honey dressing and then sprinkled over with a colourful collection of large pop rocks. The result: a snap, crackle, and pop in your mouth. And bites of savoury chicken that eats more like dessert.

With only less than 2 weeks to visit, come down to the The Fair at the PNE and celebrate the end of summer the fun and filling way – with plenty of food!

Pacific National Exhibition
2901 E Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V5K 5J1
(604) 253-2311

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