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Opinion InMarket: It's Wacky Texas Food Month. Time for a bacon-beer milkshake...

InMarket: It’s Wacky Texas Food Month. Time for a bacon-beer milkshake…

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Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

We love bacon. We love beer. We love milkshakes. Will we love all three together? Why deny yourself? Have all three. Yes, this ménage á trois fantasy of caloric consumption can come true, thanks to Texas Motor Speedway and Levy Restaurants.

Earlier this year it was bacon cotton candy. Now Texas Motor Speedway has taken it to a new level – shaken things up, so to speak. Levy Restaurants’ executive chef Joel Pena has created the Shake ‘n Bacon Brew, a beer milkshake that is, according to the news release, “a delectable, bacon-infused, alcoholic novelty concoction.” Levy Restaurants is a Chicago group that partners with several sporting facilities to provide unique food and drink, and they seem to give free rein to their imagination for Texas. This latest brew will debut Oct. 31-Nov. 3 during the AAA Texas 500 NASCAR tripleheader race weekend at the speedway.

Don’t worry that you’re supporting some out-of-state organizations when you plunk down a Hamilton for one of these; the Shake ‘n Bacon Brew uses Texas products. The beer? It’s a craft beer from Rahr & Sons Brewing Co. right here in Fort Worth. The ice cream? Ever-popular Blue Bell Ice Cream from the company founded in 1907 in Brenham that has some of the best commercials around. The bacon? Don’t know where it came from, except it’s from a pig. Want the breakdown on the latest in “how-can-they-top-this” Southern cuisine?

According to the news release: “The frothy beverage consists of six ounces of Rahr & Sons Ugly Pug Black Lager, six ounces of Blue Bell homemade vanilla ice cream, two ounces of bacon-infused maple syrup that is mixed in a blender for a unique milkshake for adults 21 and over. The Shake ‘n Bacon Brew will be poured into a 16-ounce plastic souvenir cup featuring the brew’s pig mascot and then topped off with three ounces of whipped cream and bacon crumbles.” See the State Fair of Texas for more examples of this type of extreme Southern cuisine. Entries at the State Fair this year included whipped Nutella wrapped around dough and deep fried with toppings including strawberries and bananas; a fried millionaire pie made of cream cheese filling, pineapple and pecans with toppings including whipped cream and coconut; fried spinach artichoke dip bites; chicken-fried meatloaf; a fried fireball of pimento cheese, pickles, cayenne pepper and bacon; deep-fried Cuban roll; deep-fried turkey dinner and a deep-fried King Ranch casserole.

Perhaps October should be designated Wacky Texas Food Month and those guys from Duck Dynasty should be our spokesmodels. For those avoiding alcohol and under 21, but who don’t want to miss out on the fun or calories, Levy Restaurants also will produce a “Shirley Temple” version. The Shake ‘n Bacon Brewless will substitute root beer for the beer and also come in the 16-ounce souvenir cup. You could probably request sugar-free root beer, but what would be the point, really? In for a penny, in for several pounds, as they say. Shake ‘n Bacon Brew and Shake ‘n Bacon Brewless will only be available during race week, at the “Pig Rig” located on the main concourse between Gates 3 and 4.

Shake ‘n Bacon Brew and Brewless are the third and fourth bacon-infused concession items that Pena has produced, joining Texas Motor Speedway’s other novelty concession items that debuted during April’s NASCAR race weekend. The most popular item of the group was the “Hawg Heaven” bacon cotton candy, which was joined by the Bacon Martini, Smokin’ Hubcaps (brisket on a glazed donut), mac ‘n cheese hot dog and chocolate-covered Pit Stop Popcorn. All of these items will be available once again for the AAA Texas 500 race weekend.

In Market is a column written from the perspective of a plugged-in business journalist about business happenings in and around Tarrant County. Got an idea for In Market? Robert Francis can be reached at rfrancis@bizpress.net.  


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