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Minnesota State Fair 2019: Where can you get the best cheese curds?

It's a State Fair staple, but who does it best?
The Mouth Trap

The cheese curds from The Mouth Trap.

You can’t go wrong with fried cheese. Or can you?

Cheese curds are one of the quintessential Minnesota State Fair foods. But not all cheese curds are created equal.

There are two essential things to consider when seeking out the best cheese curds:

  1. Fresh fried is best: If they’re not fresh fried – if they’ve been sitting out for any length of time – I’m out. Cheese curds need to be crispy on the outside.
  2. The cheese matters: Cheese curds are simply best when they’re eaten soon after
  3.  they’re made. This is one cheese that doesn’t get better with age. So, when turning cheese curds into fried cheese curds, it’s critical that the cheese is fresh.

Keeping these two key things in mind, I set out to find the best cheese curds at the Minnesota State Fair in 2019.

Now I couldn't physically consume cheese curds from every purveyor on the fairgrounds – there are countless places that do them – so I instead focused on the few places that specializes in cheese curds and cheese-like products, and here's what I found:

The Mouth Trap

Where to find it: The Food Building

The Mouth Trap cheese curds stand has its ticket-based ordering and delivering process down to a science. And it’s a matter of survival for this longtime fair booth, considering how busy it is.

Its popularity is no coincidence. It’s because of their awesome curds.

The cheese is chewy and the breading is light and crispy. These curds are served hot out of the fryer.

The Big Cheese 

Big cheese

Where to find it: West side of Liggett St. between Carnes & Judson Avenues

These were the perfect cheese curds.

The cheese was melty and addictively salty. The outside was crispy. The curds were hot from the fryer.

Well done, Big Cheese.

Miller’s Flavored Cheese Curds

Millers cheese curds

Where to find it: East side of Nelson St. between Dan Patch & Carnes avenues, next to the giant slide

What makes these curds unique? They come in different flavors, including garlic, jalapeno, and ranch. I tried the garlic.

The outer coating on these cheese curds was not as crispy as the others I tried. But I appreciated the different flavor offerings. A different twist on the classic fried cheese curd.

The winner?

I truly liked them all. But after much delicious taste-testing, but I have settled on the cheese curds from The Big Cheese.

It might be a surprise given that The Mouth Trap has been everyone's go-to since the closure of the Original Deep Fried Cheese Curds stall, but I truly thought The Big Cheese was the cream of the crop.

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