Wisconsin Valley Fair 2019


I made my annual trip to the fair in Wausau this year.  I went twice.  I saw Daughtry and Andy Grammer perform.  It was a successful trip.  I am going to break it down by day.

Thursday:  cheese curds from the Breakfast Optimists stand; loaded waffle chips with yellow queso, green onions, bacon pieces and sour cream; cheesecake on a stick (cherry dipped); mini donut holes.  I ate before the concert only.

I started off with the order of cheese curds; a tradition to start off with these for as long as I have been going to this fair – perfectly cooked with the perfect amount of breading.  The queso on the loaded waffle fries provided a nice kick to the taste buds; the ingredients were a great complement to the thin waffle chips.  The cherry dipped cheesecake was phenomenal as usual, and it is very difficult to make a mistake on this classic Wisconsin Valley Fair sweet treat!  The donut holes I had were a great substitute to the traditional deep fried mini donuts, and plus they came in a big plastic cup, which provided easier access to eat.  Close to perfection, but you got to have that special wow factor to get the best score.  The non traditional Matt Kring fair items (the loaded waffle chips and donut holes) were great but not quite that item that I will be talking about for months.  9.5/10

Friday:  authentic mexican tacos with shredded pollo (chicken), cilantro, chopped raw  onions and taco sauce (one was spicy, one was mild); grilled cheese sandwich (Bistro Melt it was called, which contained ham, swiss cheese and a special bistro sauce; served with parmesan garlic chips); TWO orders of cheese curds from the Breakfast Optimists stand; waffle bombs (deep fried waffles, strawberry sauce, powdered sugar and chocolate sauce); cheese fries; funnel cake with powdered sugar, caramel sauce and soft serve ice cream.  I ate before the concert and after.

I went full feed bag mode on Friday.  I was ready to give it my all.  The cheese curds taste a little different each order I get from the Breakfast Optimists, but they all taste amazing!  The tacos were awesome, and the ingredients were nice and fresh  The item, that will stick out to me will be the waffle bombs.  First time I’ve seen anything like this at the Wisconsin Valley Fair.  It was the best item I had during my stay at the fair.  If you have a passion for waffles, then you would agree with me.  I really liked the grilled cheese sandwich (especially the sauce); one of my favorite items to eat, and the parmesan garlic chips were a great item to tag along with the grilled cheese.  The funnel cake is a classic fair item, but it is a deal breaker with the ice cream, and I decided to try the caramel sauce; overall, just delightful.   Cheese fries are determined by how the french fry is cooked, and it was a major success.  I was in the zone, everything was full potential, and pair that up with the top notch waffle bombs, and you have a perfect score in my book!  10/10





Weekend Review 7/27-7/28/2019

Hello Folks!

Back at the grind, blogging!

Had some terrific eats this weekend.  I started Saturday with a homemade recipe for Taco Burgers courtesy of my Mother.  The gas grill just makes a tasty burger, doesn’t it?  The perfect amount of taco seasoning, with the right amount of salsa, with the right amount of spice on the salsa, makes the perfect taco burger.  Follow it up with some Lawry’s seasoning on a batch of tater tots, and you have a tasty meal for a fraction of the cost, if you went to a restaurant.   9/10

Now it’s Sunday.  I went with KFC for lunch.  I have never tried the Georgia Gold sauce before.  I’ve had the Carolina Gold flavor recently, and I had to try KFC’s version.  Ooh yeah (Kool-Aid man voice), it exceeded expectations.  I am not the biggest sweet mustard fan, and I am not the GOAT (Tom Brady) of mustard fans, but boy I am on my way if I keep eating it.  The mashed potatoes/gravy and macaroni/cheese, with the Georgia Gold Crispy Tenders, a perfect match!  Golf clap, anyone??  Just saw Brooks Koepka dominate the field again, so I had to make a golf reference.   Dessert was a one scoop sundae at Culver’s.  They did not provide me on my birthday with their usual treat, but they gave me a belated birthday coupon.  Culver’s never disappoints.  Butterfinger with hot fudge, with vanilla custard, shown.  8/10

Sunday Dinner Time!  Homemade grilled chicken caesar wraps with a side of homemade french fries.  My Mom spoils me, I know.  I don’t thank her enough for the hard work providing this hungry/hangry man his food!  I love chicken.  I love croutons.  I love caesar dressing.  I love wraps.  So this means I must have loved this dish.  I did!  9/10


Food Review – Chicago 11/30/18-12/2/18


Welcome to a Chicago edition of my latest food blog! Today I will review my latest visit to my brother Brett’s neck of the woods.

The sad part is I do not get enough time to enjoy the city of Chicago. We usually roll in late evening between 8-10 on a Friday, and we leave by 2 ish on Sunday. We try to pack in as much activity as we can, I mean alcoholic beverages.

The beverages of the weekend are a maple old fashioned, that Brett made. The second and third were mulled wines from the Christkindlemarket in Downtown Chicago. There was a regular Gluwein and an apple cinnamon version. So darn good!

I am going to center in one particular meal from the weekend. We were within a short walking distance of an Italian restaurant called La Scarola, which is a building right next to the iconic old school Richards Bar (you can still smoke inside this bar) on Grand Avenue.

The place we had a reservation for 8:00. It is a small and quaint place, but the restaurant sure knows how to pack the customers in.

We started off by sharing a bottle of wine. Then immediately came the bread and butter; Matt is a happy man right now. The bread had some Italian seasoning, which would have been very delicious on its own, but I had to put some butter on it.

We waited for a good amount of time, so our wine and bread can settle in, which absolutely no complaints at all. Honestly I ate too much bread, because when I got my main dish, well you know.

I ordered the lasagna. They had some creative fantastic sounding entrees, but I know what I like, so lasagna it is. Oh my Chicago, that was the best lasagna I’ve ever had. If only I would have eaten less bread. Still, I 100 percent appreciated the presentation, temperature of the food, texture and taste. In my family, I’m the one who “almost always” finishes their meal. Except this meal, I did not. My family thought I was sick, honestly! No I’m kidding, my Mom knew right away!

And the price for four entrees and two bottles of wine, was a very good value for a Chicago, $200 including a 20% tip.

A no brainer 10/10 in my books. One of the best experiences of the year.


Eat the Way You Want to Eat

Hi Folks,

I’m changing it up here.  I am not posting a review, and I am not critiquing anything.

I began to pay attention about my weight since 2002, when being overweight was making me unhappy.  I’ve focused on one goal since then, calories.

As long as I stick with a caloric budget most of the week, then I’m fine.  I’ve tried Atkins, and I succeeded.  I tried South Beach for a little bit, and I succeeded.  But I love that 1-2 days a week feeling, when I am on the see-food diet.  I love bad food, who doesn’t?  If I cut bad food completely out of my diet, then it’s back to unhappiness.

Today, it is National Cheeseburger Day.  But, I managed to get a great workout in, and I stayed within my caloric budget.

So my message is, whatever diet you are trying to accomplish, eat the way you want to eat.  If it’s fruits/veggies, vegan, low carb, low caloric, enjoy it, and be happy.



Food Review – Great Dane Pub, Wausau, WI

Hi There,

Welcome to another edition of my food blog.  Today I am reviewing “The Great Dane” in Wausau, WI.  I have not had the greatest experiences here, but the last two have been outstanding.  The last time, prior to last evening, was in July 2017 where I visited this restaurant for a 15 year high school reunion.  I ordered their cheese curds, which were outstanding.  Last night, I officially put “The Great Dane” back on the map of great restaurants in Wausau.

On the menu was french onion soup, which featured pretzel croutons.  Then I ordered a their grilled cheese sandwich, which featured ham and an awesome pimento beer cheese drizzled on the inside.  Then there was the classic poutine, which was very traditional, but their fries, gravy and cheese curds were very fresh and superb.  Then there had to be cocktails involved.  A double crown royal on the rocks and a landmark lite beer were involved.  Great Dane features their own craft beers on tap, and a lite beer was striking my mood last night.

I left the place with a bright smile on my face, and I am definitely visiting this place again soon.  Thank you for one of the greatest food experiences I have had in a long time.  10/10


Food Review – Cinco de Mayo Weekend 2018

Greetings and Salutations,

This blog is all about my dining experiences, from the previous weekend.

So what I did was, I threw my diet and exercise completely out the window, and ate like a champion.  I had a little bit of everything, so it is going to be a little difficult to crave anything these next few days.

So I am going to describe what is going on in each picture, and I will critique each picture and its food.

So what you see in the first picture is from Domino’s.  I stretched this out into three meals.  There’s a large buffalo chicken pizza, a medium pizza with double cheese, salami and Italian sausage.  Then as a side item, we have a 16 piece of parmesan bread bites.  The food tasted the absolute best when fresh, but warmed up, not that much.  It is highly recommended to eat Domino’s as much as you can, the day you get it delivered/carried out.  6.5/10

The second picture is a peanut butter cup shake I got from a gas station chain, very popular in the Midwest, called Kwik Trip.  Good shake, but the best shake I’ve ever had, triumphs this easily.  6/10

The third picture are from an authentic Mexican restaurant called La Taqueria, and it just opened on Wausau’s West Side.  So the item to get is the street taco.  I’ve tried their burrito and quesadilla, and I was not as impressed as the street taco.  So I ordered two street tacos, chicken and chorizo, and I washed it down with a strawberry margarita on the rocks.  Everything went down smooth, and the flavor was an unforgettable experience.  9/10

The fourth picture is a continuation of the Cinco de Mayo celebration, and I wanted to keep my buzz going.

The fifth and sixth pictures are from Culver’s, mostly out of the midwest, famous for their butter burgers, custard and reputation of always preparing their food fresh on the spot.  I tried their pretzel haus pub burger, and cheese curds were recommended to pair with the pub burger, and I washed it down with a diet Culver’s homemade root beer.  I also took advantage of their custard, with a one-scoop vanilla dish.  The burger reminded me of something I would get in a German restaurant.  It had that tangy mustard mixed with the cheeses, patty and pretzel buns.  It definitely, but I prefer their colby jack pub burger version – it’s more safe and more me.  As usual, a fresh dining experience at Culver’s.  7.5/10

The last and seventh picture is just a pile of sharp cheddar and mozzarella cheese, with Hormel pepperoni, and they are microwaved on top of a 1.5 oz serving of nacho cheese Doritos.  I did not feel like buying another meal Sunday night, so I did this.  Lazy, kind of boring, but a great way to end the see-food weekend diet.  7/10

Stay tuned for another dining experience from me.  Thank you for reading.

Food Review – 9/16/17, Everest Area Optimist Cheese Curds

Hello there!

This week we are going a little local on this blog.  This will be my one last hurrah, Summer blog before we start heading in the fall.

This blog is all about Wisconsin Cheese Curds.  We have a local stand in the Wausau area called the “Everest Area Optimist Club” who serves cheese curds, brats, hamburgers and hot dogs about a half of dozen times a Summer.  They’re always parked at Ace Hardware in Weston, WI (Wausau suburb), across from Target.  I found out they were serving food on Friday and Saturday.  The heart was racing with excitement.

I made plans, on Saturday, to visit the Everest Area Optimist Club one last time before the cooler weather hits, and as I expected, I was not disappointed by any means.  That golden beer battered curd was melting in my mouth immediately, cooked to perfection.  This is the curd to get guys.  This is the curd of the Summer!  A great beer battered cheese curd cannot be too greasy, which means they were not cooked long enough, and you should not be able to crunch the curd like a potato chip; that means they were cooked too long.

I experienced the perfect cheese curd, and Wisconsin folks know what I am talking about.  The only thing I am going to gripe about is, they could have been hotter, temperature wise.  They were definitely under a hot light, but they were still perfectly cooked.  9/10