Everyone already knows I am a bacophile (one who intensely loves bacon). I am amused at the array of products available with bacon in them. Companies like J&D Foods stake their whole business on the national (if not world-wide) love for the salty strips of pork.
Now you can imagine how excited I was to learn that the state of Michigan was about to hold their very first BaconFest. Even more excited when the organizers wanted to talk with us and allow us access to the event.
Back in April in we did a show called Totally Owlsome with a local comedian named Nova Green, but in the episode we also got to speak with the men in charge of BaconFest. These men were like Santa Claus to me, they had just delivered the best thing ever! The child in my head imagined a bacon carnival, the grown up in my head heard free booze and food.
So I gathered up my team.
Liz: My loving wife and heir to the throne should I keel over from bacon induced caridacc arrest.
Jessi: Friend and fellow baconphile with a keen sense of taste and a sharp professional wit about her.
Justin: A large man with a massive appetite for any kind of food. Adventurous enough to stick damn near anything in his mouth and never afraid of asking the right questions.
Us four piled into one vehicle and set forth on the greatest adventure of a lifetime (this year)
Our travels took us to Royal Oak, Michigan. We circled past the the event to see what kind of line we were looking at having to stand it. The event took place at the Royal Oak farmer’s market, the line wrapped around 3 sides of the property and looked like it was set to double itself. We decided to zip over to the parking structure and as fate would have it, ended up parking in the “Hickory” section at the top of the structure. As we walked from the parking area over to the event, we all talked and joked about the length of the line saying “Imagine if we miss BaconFest (the inside event) and only get to report what it smelled like”, this was unacceptable to even joke about for Justin so he found an organizer PDQ and asked if there was a separate line for V.I.P. Ticket holders. Low and behold, there was a different line. So we 4 walked past the line of people, getting evil eye’d the whole way because we got to skip the line.
Once inside the day become a blur of laughs, great food and enough bacon to clog even the cleanest of arteries. We documented it with photographs, and shot a little video along the way. I also asked the gang to give me a few paragraphs on what they thought of BaconFest all of that is below.
There would have been more video, but nobody wanted to talk to us. Everyone kept claiming to be too intoxicated to speak to us, we did get one couple to speak to us. They were “Foodies” (Foodie is an informal term for a particular class of aficionado of food and drink.) who had been on a cross country tour of edible festivals. To them, I say thank you for giving us at least one on camera reaction.
Oh, Bacon Fest! How I loved thee. Let me count the ways! I must say that Bacon Fest lived up to my expectations and then some. Before arriving, I was prepared for phenomenal food and lots of people. We arrived to find the line stretched from the entrance around three sides of the Royal Oak Farmer’s Market. Again, I expected a crowd because who doesn’t love bacon?
Before even entering the building, the smell of bacon was permeating the air, teasing your nostrils as you waited in line. It is true, bacon makes everything better….even standing in line. The vendors were set up along the walls giving the most space for patrons. There was so much food. Who knew you could put bacon in so much.
While I would have loved to have tried everything that was available to sample, I do not think my arteries could have handled that much bacon. I was a tad selective in the things I ate. I can not think of one thing that I sampled that was not delicious. I know the group I was with left stuffed and amazed. If you are a bacon lover, don’t miss it if the opportunity arises for you to go.
I had the opportunity to spend Saturday, June 2nd at BaconFest Michigan with friends representing Mad World Radio and the Phonetic Bells Network. We started filming our journey on the way to downtown Royal Oak in the car, anxiously expressing our desire for gluttony and crazy bacon-drizzled offerings. We parked close by and noticed a line wrapping almost completely around the Farmer’s Market upon our approach, though thanks to our nifty V.I.P. tickets we were able to stroll on by for a much shorter entry. Beyond the express line, our tickets also got us lanyards, ample drink tickets and a goody bag of coupons. A crab and bacon flat bread sandwich was handed to me as I entered the market, and it was so good that I decided to grab one at the end as well, for a full circle effect on the evening.
The place was swarming; everywhere you looked were booths from various local restaurants offering unique bacon-infused creations, live music blaring from the stage and a sea of people standing around bistro tables savoring the edible goodness. Inside we milled from table to table sampling deceptively small, yet filling, treats. We snapped photos, chatted with other attendees, and even interviewed a couple who bragged about their frequent treks to various food festivals. There was bacon everything, running the gamut from appetizers to desserts.
My favorite item of the evening was the “Sunday Morning Breakfast” ice cream, which included maple syrup, waffle and vanilla ice cream in addition to the required bacon. Inside the market and out was jam packed with a sold out crowd, people with satisfied bellies lined the curbs outside near drink tents, food trucks and grills. We took turns sharing two folding chairs we found near a designated smoking area, a treasured find, since seating was scarce. After hours of grazing, my party and I shared a similar exhaustion that only comes from food gorging. We happily welcomed the meat sweats and waddled back to our vehicle, already discussing plans of attack for next year. After some post-event interviews we called it a night, each retiring home for collective food comas. As a bacon lover, I’d say Baconfest Michigan is a must and I intend to return, though I may need to fast and stretch my legs to better prepare my body for the task in upcoming years.
Baconfest was a great experience that I enjoyed very much. The bacon themed food was awsome and very delicious from the bacon itself to the fused bacon as in breakfest icecream. Having a VIP ticket I liked the fact about the shorter line to get in. Other than that the Swag bag was ok but besides the posters there was nothing to be thrilled over. The extra drink tickets were a good idea but the choas from people not knowing where to go was a little annoying. I think that a better map of locations of where certain food iteams are would be a big help. I almost missed out on one of the resturants because they had to leave. Other than that no complaints. The people were a great helpand friendly. I would go again.