As a kid in Orange County there were two places I constantly begged my parents to take me – Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm. I was pretty lucky because I made plenty of trips to both. Now that I’m older…who am I kidding? I still love them! Recently, my sister, Shannon, and I decided to spend a Saturday at Knott’s (we had media passes) when they happened to be celebrating their annual Boysenberry Festival and we had a berry good time!
Did you know the boysenberry was cultivate by Walter Knott himself? He started selling it at his farm stand and, lo and behold, it became a huge hit. Out of that grew the boysenberry pie, the chicken dinner restaurant and the famed theme park we know today. In fact, when you visit Knott’s you can see where it all began.
It’s no wonder that every year Knott’s celebrates this special fruit. As Shannon and I are both fans we were excited to check the fest out. Held throughout the Ghost Town area it featured a range of activities – most importantly boysenberry food and drink tastings. There were over 75 different items – where to begin? We decided to start with the tasting card which, for a flat fee, entitled us to 8 different tastings.
The tasting booths were scattered around Ghost Town and featured a variety of sweet and savory items. The tasting cards were quite popular and every booth was busy but we rarely had to wait very long.
Shannon and I both agreed the best items were the Boysenberry Sausage on a Bun and the Slow Cooked Boysenberry Short Rib. The smoked sausage was freshly grill and served on a toasted bun. We tried it with boysenberry ketchup and relish and both were quite flavorful! The short rib was made with a boysenberry glaze and served on a bed of rice with green onions. It was super tender and had a tasty sweet and spicy flavor.
I was also quite partial to the Boysenberry Cheese Quesadilla. That purple tortilla was, in fact, boysenberry flavored. It was a bit too sweet for me but the boysenberry salsas that went with it? Delicious! I’m kicking myself for not buying a jar.
Of course, all that tasting needed to be washed down with a cool beverage and we decided to try the Calico Soda. Hand mixed in the Calico Saloon and flavored with boysenberry and vanilla it was so, so good!
The Boysenberry Festival also offers an array of wine, beer and cider and we opted for the latter. Boysenberry flavored, of course!
It was also quite tasty and paired well with the Boysenberry Chicken Wings.
By the time we completed our punch card we were quite full but we couldn’t leave without having dessert! There were so many options to choose from like cinnamon rolls, funnel cake, deep fried cheesecake and on and on and on. Although it is available year round, we couldn’t help but choose the Boysenberry Ice Cream.
It had the longest line for a reason! This is my very favorite Knott’s item and I can’t leave the park without enjoying it. It’s so berry-licious!
I;m so happy I finally made it to Knott’s Boysenberry Festival. It was as fun as I imagined it to be and I won’t miss it next year!