We attended the Kobalt Tools 400 yesterday, held at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Matt Kenseth turned 41 AND he won the race, but we only know because we looked it up. We really don’t know anything about NASCAR, except that its inspiration is the evasion of law enforcement while transporting illegal booze during the Prohibition Era. With that in mind, we thought we’d use this opportunity to highlight the interesting and different foods and beverages offered.
The drive to the stadium took us through Nellis Air Force Base. We got to see some planes (that August knows nothing about but Zach was able to identify).
Our fabulous hostess Joanie at the Tropicana got us amazing seats between Turns 3 and 4 in one of the Grandstands. We had a great view of the cars coming ’round the bend and the magnitude of the speedway (capacity is 142,000 people!).
A sliced apple, homemade caramel, white chocolate, and nuts made a delightful, refreshing, and not-so-guilty dessertish item. August isn’t typically a fan of apples because all too often she picks the mealy ones, but this was a nice, crisp, juicy apple.
We got a traditional gyro (with lamb and beef), also from Kabob Shack like the caramel apple blossom. The vegetables were very fresh, the pita was light in texture, and the tzatziki sauce was creamy and flavorful.
We did not anticipate seeing Asian-inspired fare at NASCAR, but here it is. This stand had no banner, no business cards, no complete descriptions of their items, but Zach wanted to try the fried shrimp combo plate. Everything was fresh, and it was a nice change to see this competing with burgers, nachos, and corn dogs.
There was plenty of beer, water, and soda, but why bother with the standards when this unique gem was here? We got a mug of Cherry Wine (soda) from this Pioneer Pop stand run by a headstrong high school senior.
A “grilled all beef hot dog topped with smoked prime rib, caramelized onions, ‘giardiniere‘ vegetables and creamy horseradish” were served as a “taste of NASCAR” from the joint collaboration of Levy Restaurants and the young men at Pi Kappa Alpha. There were other types of dogs with names like the Atlanta, the Charlotte, and the Kentucky in reference to other speedways, but when you’re in Vegas, go all the way – hence the Vegas Buffet Dog.
The most awesome surprise of the variety of NASCAR food was the frozen yogurt food trailer from Sin City Street Treats. We were amazed by the 12 flavors and selection of toppings, but we wanted to taste the frozen yogurt unadulterated. We got apple pie and dulce de leche, and our taste buds’ first impression was “wow.” Real ingredients are used, so the apple pie actually has the tartness of a true apple, nothing like apple candy like we were expecting. The dulce de leche had a mild caramel flavor, so combined with the apple pie it mimicked the flavor of streusel crumble sometimes found on pie instead of lattice.
We never thought we’d go to NASCAR, but we did. And we never thought we’d find anything besides burgers, nachos, and corn dogs, but we did. It just goes to show that you can get unique food in the most unexpected places.