We’re just over a week away from the opening of the State Fair of Texas, which is nationally recognized for its battered and fried, over-the-top calorie bombs.
In the spirit of the season, many Dallas-Fort Worth restaurants are following suit and serving fair-inspired cuisine.
If you can’t make it to the State Fair this year, or if you want to prolong your celebration outside the grounds of Fair Park, here are some restaurants where you can find fair-inspired fare — no tickets or coupons required, plus you’ll have air con and seating.
This Kansas City barbecue spot was inspired by extravagant fair food and is serving “smo-fried” wings this fair season. The process to make these wings is more complex than usual: They’re brined, smoked, then fried and coated in a sweet barbecue wing sauce.
4100 Maple Ave. (Oak Lawn)
Local Yocal is bringing the taste of the fair to McKinney with made-from-scratch gourmet corn dogs. The corn dogs are made with a half-pound of housemade sausage then dipped in beer batter. They’ll be available for lunch and dinner through the run of the State Fair of Texas, Sept. 27 through Oct. 20.
350 E. Louisiana St., McKinney
In spirit of the fair, newly opened Top Round is launching a limited-time sandwich, the barbecued Frito chili pie on a bun. Barbecue beef, onion, sour cream, Fritos and housemade Cheez Whiz are stuffed between a buttery bun. This over-the-top sandwich is available Sept. 25 through Nov. 1.
4800 Bryan St. (East Dallas)
Bubble tea concept Fat Straws is debuting a Pandan-coconut flavored mochi donut. These Japanese-style doughnuts are known for their crispy exterior and chewy interior. Pandan is a tropical plant that grows in Southeast Asia and is often called the vanilla of Southeast Asia. These unique doughnuts are hand-dipped and topped with coconut flakes.
This new southern Italian concept imported from Australia offers an array of pastas, pizzas and more. This fair season, try the Nutella calzone, a folded pizza drizzled with Nutella and served with vanilla gelato.
2000 Ross Ave. (downtown)
This Latin American-inspired restaurant is serving a quintessential state fair dessert: churrones. A staple food item at the fair, Te Deseo’s churrones are street churros with abuelita chocolate sauce for dipping.
2700 Olive St. (Harwood District)
Community is once again brewing its award-winning Funnel Cake Ale. Crowned Most Creative in the Big Tex Choice Awards in 2014, this English summer ale is brewed with Maris Otter English malt and malted wheat. During aging, they puree and infuse Madagascar vanilla beans into the ale to give it a sweet finish.
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1530 Inspiration Drive (Design District)
Head to The Shops at Legacy for another fair-inspired beverage. Pepper Smash’s cotton candy martini is almost as fun to watch being made as it is to drink ($10). They begin with cotton candy that dissolves as Skyy citrus vodka, lemon juice, vanilla syrup and Champagne are poured over it.
7200 Bishop Road, Suite B-9, Plano