Classic county fair food has a knack for falling into one of two categories, in terms of public reaction. An edible item can either come under the "I've GOT to try that immediately!" header or be relegated to the "Who on earth would eat that?" file.
And while fair regulars regularly sample just about every quirky comestible found among the food booths, there are some clear winners each year, in terms of what dishes and treats went big.
The OC Fair traditionally releases some of its huge numbers, in the days that fall the fair's final wrap-up. The last day of the 2015 spectacular was Aug. 16, which means we now get to pry behind the scenes and see what snacks soared.
Nosey people? Queue up here.
Those deep-fried Starbucks coffee balls tempted fair goers, who downed 15,000 of the caffeine-rich orbs. Some 5,000 eaters had to know what deep-fried Slim Fast tasted like, and about 11,000 Krispy Kreme Triple Donut Cheeseburgers crossed the counter at Chicken Charlie's during the fair's month-long run.
Chicken Charlie's also sold over 10,000 deep-fried Oreos, which, let's be honest, remains a tasty titan of the fried fair food line-up. New headline-grabbers may come and go, but something about the melty cream in the middle, and the way the cookies get soft with applied heat, makes the deep-fried Oreo the grand dame of the fair fryer.
As for the pickle wieners on a stick? Pickle O'Pete's sold 800 of 'em. Because pickle wieners on a stick, right? You're gonna.
Pink's Hot Dogs sold nearly 20k frankfurters. About a third of 'em, give or take, was The Bam Dog, which was chosen as the 2015 fair's winning food.
Lastly, and most buzzily, was the ballyhoo'd Caviar Twinkie, which came with a price point of $125 (with all proceeds going directly to The Children's Hospital of Orange County). Available at Chicken Charlie's, the fish egg-topped sponge cake went to 26 adventurous and generous eaters during the course of the midway-and-more bash.
You know many, many photos were taken by curious bystanders as the brave eater chomped down.
So what's to be gleaned from the stats -- thousands of pieces of bacon fried, tons of cinnamon sugar used -- that simmer up from the OC Fair each mid-August? That people will try the new, but the stuff that worked from years past tends to last.
May fair time always bring the weird edibles, the try-it-oncers, and may those deep-fried Oreos continue to keep their moist, golden-brown crown.