I had one of the best Kennywood experiences of my whole life this past Sunday and the giddiness has been carrying me through this week. TRUST that I will wear you down with a deluge of words on this but I wanted to start with the Bites & Pints event. Kennywood, like numerous other parks, has been doing this food and drink pairing thing for several years now but we have never participated. If you know me, I’m the type of person who goes to park specifically to ride shit, and eating is secondary. We rarely partake in any event going on.
But this time, it was just Henry and me and I had watched a coaster enthusiast’s YouTube video on Bites & Pints just the other day and there were some things that looked pretty good that maybe I might have wanted to try.
So, Bites & Pints is comprised of numerous tents offering fare from a particular region. There was: Italy, Greece, Poland, Mexico, Germany, the Caribbean, and Asia (this one annoyed me for two reasons: Asia is gigantic and could mean anything??? and also it was the ONLY tent that didn’t have one single meatless option. C’mon now, “Asian” food can be so veggie-centric, do better Chef from Spoon & BRGR who organized this dumb thing).
(OK it’s not dumb, but that was definitely annoying. This could have been a great opportunity to do something spectacular with tofu!)
Originally, I thought that maybe we could just get one or two things a la carte, but the more I looked at the menu online, the more I was like, “Orrrrrr, we could just bite the bullet and get the Bite Card….”
Season Pass holders had the option to buy a 15-sample card for the same price as the 12-sample one so we ended up doing it, figuring we could just share everything.
You guys, it was worth it! I mean, nothing that really brought me to my knees, but we did enjoy everything we got, plus it was super fun to run around and get our card punched.
So before I start barraging your eyeballs with posts full of pictures of coasters and our dumb faces, here is a run-down of the FOODS we redeemed with our big shot Bite Card.
Arancini (5/5, actually would go back and buy this again, a la carte) and whipped fresh ricotta cheese (2/5; it was good but kind of unimagined and underwhelming, like it was a last minute addition to the menu).
Not pictured: Nutella stuffed pretzel (4/5 but also this was literally just from the Kennywood candy shop, so I felt like that was a cop-out, Dude from BRGR and Spoon – ITALY HAS SO MANY GREAT DESSERTS TO CHOOSE FROM).
I forgot to take a picture of Mexico, but we got the street corn which I knew would be good because Mexican street corn. Nothing ground-breaking here. (4/5)
Dolmas (3/5 – just basic grape leaves; I could walk down Brookline Blvd and get better ones at the Greek restaurant here) and Loukoumades (4/5 because of the addition of the HOT HONEY).
From the Caribbean:
Fried plantains! This was a 4.5/5 but was also notably the smallest portion of everything we got from the other stalls. If we had bought these without the Bite Card I think it would have been like $8.99 which seems outrageous.
Black Forest cupcake from Germany. (2/5 – just OK. I’ve had worse, but this felt like a grocery store bakery cupcake. The icing was oddly satisfying though and it was an icing that I’m not normally a fan of – the thick Crisco-flavored bullshit with very little sweetness.)
Placki Ziermniaczane – fried potato cakes with apple compote (4/5) and pierogies (3/5 – they put the BACON BITS on the side so that I could also enjoy. It was OK! I mean, we live in Pgh and pierogies are kind of a THING here so I wasn’t expecting to have the best pierogi ever from a tent at Kennywood, you know?).
We still had samples left to get punched on our card so we decided to try some of the bevs. I liked that the Bite Card got us small samples of the drinks (the food was regular-sized) because I am *not* a big drinker nor do I ever drink at amusement parks.
- Violet Cider
- wine mule (THIS ONE WAS MY FAVE)
- Speachless Peach Cider (I had a sip and it was delicious)
- Reed’s Classic Mule (this one was weird but good? Goodly weird?)
Walking around with a wine mule in my meat paw, I gurgled, “I NEVER DRINK ALCOHOL IN AMUSMENT PARKS. I FEEL LIKE AN ADULT.”
“You’re not,” Henry was quick to point out. Then literally 30 seconds later, I spotted Kenny Kangaroo and his handler so I started waving furiously until he waved back.
“HE WAVED! I MADE HIM WAVE!” I screamed into the side of Henry’s face.
“OK!” Henry snapped in annoyance. “I SAW.”
Um, I think that was it. I should note that we did all this in between walking around and riding stuff, we didn’t get a Bite Card and then go balls to the wall on a feeding frenzy! Even with the small portions though, I was stuffed.
That was definitely a fun thing to do! I feel like we got our money’s worth too because it probably cost just slightly more than if we had bought lunch somewhere in the park, but it was definitely more filling. I mean, I probably would have just eaten my traditional slice (or two) of park pizza, which I can just do another time.
I do think some of the things were phoned in though, and I obviously can’t speak for the meat options (Henry didn’t get any for himself because he’s a Real One who only gets things sans meat so that we can share. <3