Jill: Let’s be honest. Our feeding frenzy in Vermont wasn’t exactly fine dining. French fries, bar food, hot dogs and mass amounts of cheese made up the majority of our diet for a weekend that, amazingly, we’ve been able to draw out into a plethora of blog posts. So it’s fitting that our final meals together (I say “meals” because there were several) were at a fair.
Maya: The Champlain Valley Fair, to be precise.
Jill: We saw countless farms and veggie stands alongside the roads of Vermont, but, with the exception of our one home-cooked meal, very little of the bounty of the state ended up on our plates. Sausage, on the other hand…
Maya: Power of suggestion. A pair of fellow hikers mentioned that they were heading to the fair as well, just as soon as they got down the mountain. They specifically mentioned Italian sausage, so of course we couldn’t stop thinking about it either.
Jill: This was the first stand we saw, and I insisted we stop, mainly so I could get pictures of food while the light was still good.
Maya: It’s hard to mess up grilled sausage, and this one didn’t let us down. Chopped rather than sliced, as these onions and peppers are (in my experience, at least) more commonly served, the toppings were more inclined to land in my lap than in my mouth. Still, the sandwich went down well.
Jill: Do you see that break down the middle? I’d like to point out that we shared the giant sausage with two pounds of toppings. We’re not gluttonous creatures. Not at all.
Maya: You don’t think anyone actually believes that last bit, do you?
Jill: As a matter of fact, we even bypassed a few culinary offerings. Like the Steak Steak Salads. Why start eating healthily now, we asked ourselves.
Maya: Come to think of it, something green wouldn’t have gone amiss. Hard to eat while walking, though.
Jill: And we didn’t eat these. (Why didn’t we eat these?)
Maya: Too much frosting for me….
Jill: We skipped the onion rings, as well.
Maya: The noble onion rings.
Maya: One of my top-three favorite things about Vermont? The fact that vinegar is readily available in spray bottles. I can’t tell you how many times I doused those fries.
Jill: And somehow, we were suckered into buying one of these, um “Pigs in a Blanket.” At least these corn dogs were hand-dipped.
Maya: They’re famous, apparently. I would’ve had more than a bite if they’d used better dogs: Hebrew National, Sabretts, Nathan’s. Those Oscar Meyer-tasting guys aren’t my thing.
Jill: No comment.
Jill: It’s safe to say that we avoided the rides. Bouncing up and down after a loaded sausage, french fries and a corndog?
Maya: I’m inclined toward nausea just thinking about it.
Jill: We had better things to do. Like eat this.
Jill: I can’t believe we ate this. (My half had maple goo on it; Maya’s had the classic cinnamon and sugar combination.)
Maya: Even though it appeared to have come straight out of the fryer, I wasn’t convinced—the dough itself was tough and flavorless. Luckily, cinnamon sugar and maple goo are redeeming factors.
Jill: Maple, it turns out, is what makes Vermont fairs different than Ohio fairs. We passed on the Maple Shakes & Sundaes.
Maya: Virginia fairs, too. I’ve never been big on maple flavoring—if it’s not in pure syrup form, I’ll pass.
Jill: And so our trip ends. We thank you for your patience in what has turned out to be a month-long vacation slide show with commentary.
Maya: Just wait ’til you see how far we can stretch a full week’s worth of travel.
Champlain Valley Fair
105 Pearl Street
Essex Junction, VT