Porky’s at the 2009 Illinois State Fair

Porky's at the 2009 Illinois State Fair

We had wanted to eat at Porky’s on Sunday but ended up stuck in the Illinois Department of Natural Resources building inside of Conservation World. That was somewhat of a joke honestly. I may get around to covering that later. With the recent weather conditions it hasn’t been easy to find a day without rain to attend the Illinois State Fair. But on Tuesday ( Day 5 ) we made a quick trip out to the fairgrounds for dinner. Cheryl wasn’t in the mood to walk and it was late in the evening. So we took the tram around towards Gate 2. Actually we got off the tram at the Dairy Building by Marla Moo and walked towards the gate entrance.

Porky’s is located right in front of the entrance to the Sky Ride at Gate 2 on the Illinois State Fairgrounds. I should have known from our previous Fried Pepsi purchase that getting food from Porky’s would be less than easy. Let me state I have a good idea of why they have their stand setup the way they do. But I can tell you it really makes it difficult to get more than one food item. Long time readers and anyone who knows me could tell you I don’t like to be hassled when making a purchase of any type. If you make me jump through hoops you don’t get my business. Lucky for Porky’s I was hungry for what they were serving.

I didn’t go out of my way to hide my aggravation. When Cheryl told me she was having to jump through hoops just to get some pork and fries. You see at Porky’s if you want fries and some other items you go to one part of the stand and order. If you want one of their large variety of meat products you go to the right side of the tent to place your order. As far as I’m aware you have to pay at each “station”. Putting things as polite as possible. This just makes ordering fries and pork together a real pain in the backside. As I mentioned above by Porky’s you will find Fried Soda Pop right next door to the left. You will also have direct access to the Sky Ride. If you plan on getting married at the fair you can easily do that after you eat at Porky’s. The Best Wedding Chapel Trick My Truck is located right across from this food vendors stand.

With what you have read so far your probably thinking this is going to be nothing but negative. But their is hope. Everyone behind the counter at Porky’s had a pretty good idea I was less than pleased. Lets be honest I was hungry and didn’t want Cheryl to have to be hassled to get our meals. The crew working the stand did everything in their power to be polite and helpful. Cheryl commented that all the workers did their best to guide her in the right direction and were nice at all times. I’m sure anyone who has worked the Porky’s stand for any amount of time is used to the customer confusion. I’d venture a guess the vendor has decided that this setup is most efficient for single item type of purchases etc.

Even though I really wasn’t happy the crew continued to go out of their way to make things a smooth experience. One employee who came out back later when we had our food even asked how everything tasted. Which I’m happy to report did meet the hype. With that said anything would have been better than the food we got the first night of the fair.

At Porky’s Cheryl got the rib tips, I got a pulled pork sandwich and we both had an order of fries. Cheryl was more than happy with her selection. She had some of their mild barbecue sauce for my sandwich and our fries. The pulled pork was worth the hassle we encountered in line making the purchase. I don’t remember any complaints about prices. Which is rare at any fair. I know the portion sizes were more than reasonable. In the end Cheryl took home some rib tips and I included my fries in the container.

Seating for Porky’s is behind their tent. A good amount of tables and seats are located there. You can watch the Adventure Village train go by as you eat. The tent has clear plastic windows so employees can keep an eye on customers. But this also allows customers to see what is taking place in the kitchen.

Before we had gotten dinner I told Cheryl I’d be wanting some more Fried Pepsi. The Fried Soda stand is ran by Porky’s. You place your order were you would purchase fries at Porky’s. Then you head back to the left to tell the cook what you would like deep fried. On Tuesday other than just powdered sugar they were offering whipped cream as a topping along with the fried soda. I chose to have it the way I had previously with the powdered sugar only. The cook was a younger guy not the same person as the time before. That person was a bit older. Our Pepsi frying cooks were very friendly both times. The young guy actually popped out back while we ate our desert asking other employees if they had a lighter so he could go have a smoke break.

All in all our Porky’s adventure was worthwhile. I’d go back to eat their food again. I can’t say that for all the food vendors at the Illinois State Fair. Since we normally come into the fair through one of the back gates it’s a journey to get up to the front of the fairgrounds to eat at Porky’s. But Gate 2 is a large main entrance so others won’t have our issue.

One last thing. Most people I know when they see a sign that says spiral fries think of what we consider curly fries around here. As far as I could tell curly fries aren’t on the Porky’s menu. Although the fries we had were good. And trust me on this = there is a vendor with a bunch of green trim food trailers by Food-O-Rama who can give you some of the nastiest fries you will ever eat. The fries from Porky’s were quality the day we ate there.

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Want some of those nasty fries I talked about above? Here is where to find them. The stand on the left served them on day 1 of the fair.

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Porky’s BBQ
P.O. Box 227
Dayton, IN 47941
(765) 532-2706