September 24, 2023


Be Inspired By Food

From fried food items to healthful choices, MontanaFair has a flavor for anyone

BILLINGS — If you end by MontanaFair in Billings in the course of its nine-day operate, you will uncover all the basic meals like corn canines, cotton sweet and caramel apples.

But you can find a seller who provides a dish which is a bit much more nutritious and has a 13-12 months legacy across fairs in Montana.


MTN Information / Mitch Lagge

Bourbon Rooster Skewers proprietor, Patrick Obrien, flips his rooster while providing an interview with MTN Information on Tuesday.

Patrick Obrien owns Bourbon Hen Skewers, a enterprise centered in Wonderful Falls that he started in 2009. His stand is about the only area at MontanaFair you can get steamed veggies served on a mattress of jasmine rice and topped with a pork or hen skewer.

“We don’t have a fryer. We don’t have a microwave. We cook dinner on these grills. The unwanted fat can drop absent and it does. We serve steamed veggies, and at the honest, which is kind of a scarce detail to uncover, but we wanted to offer you a healthful alternative and we bring in persons from all in excess of the fairgrounds who come to get steamed veggies. We do actually effectively with that. It is an add on to our jasmine rice bowl. We contact it ‘the works bowl,'” Obrien informed MTN News on Tuesday.

From June to September, Obrien and his team offer food at fairs and other gatherings throughout japanese Montana. He started out as a foodstuff seller in 2007 at a farmers market place offering cinnamon roasted nuts.

“I had acquired at the hockey games that those people cinnamon roasted nuts abide by your nose. I was carrying out it at the farmers marketplace, but nuts are hefty and the delivery is pricey and the financial gain margin actually was not that worthwhile,” Obrien mentioned.

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MTN Information / Mitch Lagge

A freshly-well prepared is effective bowl from Bourboon rooster Skewers at MontanaFair in Billings.

Obrien explained his future enterprise selling avenue tacos and Coney pet dogs failed to quite pan out simply because also many many others were supplying very similar choices.

Two years later on, with the assist and tips of a different food vendor named Porky Paul, Obrien switched to promoting rooster on a skewer whilst Paul offered the pork. Obrien stated finally when Paul got out of the business enterprise, he picked up advertising both of those pork and hen at his booth.

Obrien explained almost everything is refreshing with his food. The meat is all contemporary and he tends to make the marinades from scratch.

“We do every thing the tough way,” explained Obrien.

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MTN News / Mitch Lagge

The Bourbon Rooster Skewers stand sits in the north section of the halfway at MontanaFair in Billings.

He is also picky about the collection of rice. It has to be jasmine rice from Thailand, and the key is to prepare dinner with water for 12 minutes in a pot with a clear lid, so you can see the cooking system.

“We find it for texture, taste and aroma. We’re actually happy of our rice. We’re seriously joyful with the way each and every batch turns out. We have our very own way of steaming it. A incredibly common comment is, ‘I’ve under no circumstances had rice like this,’ or, ‘best rice I’ve at any time had in my life,’” Obrien claimed.

This yr, MontanaFair has a broader variety of foodstuff choices as opposed to 2020. MontanaFair employees only authorized foods suppliers from within Yellowstone County to run past year. Obrien said the only truthful he got to final yr was in Miles Metropolis, and this year has been better for small business.

“Everywhere we’ve long gone, we’ve been up 10 to 15 per cent. Individuals just want to get out and want to do items. It’s been actual fast paced all over the place we go,” Obrien stated.

For some, the fancy truthful meals is a family business. Brian Chadwick, owner and operator of Chadwick Concessions, has been concerned with honest foodstuff considering the fact that he was nine a long time aged.

“It’s variety of been in our blood. My father worked for the individuals in the Coke tent when he was a kid along with my cousin, my grandma. We ended up shopping for it from them about 20 years back. We’ve just kind of been out in this article working the fair considering the fact that I was a child and my father was a kid,” Chadwick explained.


MTN Information / Mitch Lagge

Brian Chadwick, proprietor of Chadwick Concessions.

The Coke tent is now sponsored by Pepsi, but it can be one of the only truthful foods sellers that give booth seating. Chadwick claimed his cousin owns the tent and he owns and operates other stands that strictly sell funnel cakes and cheese curds made from Wisconsin cheese.

The two items generally promote about equally all over the run of the truthful, Chadwick claimed.

“One does very well during the day. 1 does effectively all through the night, and it all just form of relies upon on the temperatures. They go in spurts. When someone orders a cheese curd, it seems like you get 100 cheese curds in a row. Then someone goes with a funnel cake and it does the exact thing,” Chadwick stated.

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MTN News / Mitch Lagge

A employee dusts powdered sugar on to a funnel cake at MontanaFair in Billings.

The funnel cake and cheese curd stands journey to MontanaFair and the Montana State Reasonable in Wonderful Falls every calendar year, Chadwick claimed. And the Pepsi tent will on top of that vacation to Blackfoot, Idaho.

This is Chadwick’s 30th year in fair concessions and seeking back on it all, he claimed seeing family members and friends is the spotlight each and every 12 months.

“I no more time live in Montana, so I get to variety of come here and see youngsters I grew up with and household every single time I’m back again. That is what I appreciate the most about it. Certainly, the reasonable itself is terrific, but we get a ton of our good friends and household that appear work with us, so it tends to make it a whole lot of enjoyment,” Chadwick reported.

And around the class of 30 yrs, the small business of good meals has changed. Chadwick pointed out that people today have thrown new factors in the fryer, like Oreo cookies. But a recognizable adjust in the Halfway landscape is the addition of neighborhood places to eat and food items vehicles above time, Chadwick stated.

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MTN Information / Mitch Lagge

A particular person retains a boat of contemporary cheese curds from a stand owned by Brian Chadwick.

“There’s a whole lot extra vendors, not always even more booths, but a great deal far more distributors bringing in different, special things. You did not see a lot of, Style of Asia or a gyro. You didn’t see that 20 decades in the past, or at the very least I did not recognize it. You know, it was all the corn pet dogs and cotton candies and caramelized apples, but now you’re kind of viewing a lot much more assorted food stuff much too,” Chadwick stated.

Associated: Crowds pack in to MontanaFair in Billings for a weekend of enjoyment