The State Fair of Texas is thrilled to announce the new series “Deep Fried Dynasty” premiering tomorrow, Tuesday, March 8, at 9 p.m. CT on A&E with back-to-back episodes. Filmed at the 2021 Fried Food Capital of Texas™, featuring eight State Fair concessionaires, “Deep Fried Dynasty” explores the State Fair of Texas and one of its best-known attractions – food. Whether you’re a self-proclaimed foodie, an entrepreneurial spirit, or just a reality TV junkie, folks across the nation can tune in to see just what it is that makes the State Fair of Texas one of the greatest events in the world.
A&E’s “Deep Fried Dynasty” is all about the big personalities behind the mouthwatering food at the State Fair of Texas. These grease-soaked geniuses have only 24 demanding days to turn deep fried delicacies into major profits. They create the dishes that define the event. Wild and creative bites like Deep Fried Butter, Crispy Crazy Corn, Toffee Coffee Crunch Cake, and Fried S’Mores. The series is an inside look at how these imaginative foods come to life and the millions of dollars at stake for these family-run small businesses. With millions of fairgoers making their way through the gates, each team is on a mission to stand out and rake in profits to meet their annual goal. It’s the American Dream – deep-fried, chocolate-covered, and wrapped in bacon.
“I am most excited for people to learn about the State Fair of Texas and our team, our relationship with our vendors, and what it entails for us to work together and make this annual event a success,” said Melanie Linnear, State Fair of Texas vice president of food and beverage. “I hope folks enjoy watching the inner-workings of the Fair that draw people together from all walks of life, year after year. I also want people see that the old, negative carnival ideologies aren’t reflective of what being a Fair vendor is actually like – It takes real grit and entrepreneurial skills to succeed at an event of this caliber. Our concessionaires are both culinary and business geniuses.”
“What a crazy year for the Probst family and the State Fair of Texas,” said Clint Probst, owner of Gulf Coast Grill, and Crazy Otto’s. “Our concessions booths kept us running back and forth and had the cameramen hustling to keep up! We are happy that Deep Fried Dynasty will show the entire world what goes into the daily operations of the biggest State Fair you can visit. We hope everyone enjoys seeing the family bonds, rivalries, and good-natured hijinks that make up the State Fair of Texas concessionaire family. It’s thanks to our customers, staff, and the State Fair of Texas folks that we are a resounding success Fair after Fair!”
“It makes perfect sense for A&E to create an entire series about the State Fair of Texas concessionaires,” said Christi Erpillo, co-owner of Fernie’s Funnel Cakes. “It checks all the boxes for great TV – reality, eccentric characters, food, entertainment, family traditions all in the pursuit of the American Dream. We are so excited for everyone to see what goes on behind the scenes! The public will be shocked how much blood, sweat, tears, and creativity go into putting on the Fair. Every day is a fine line between optimism and Murphy’s Law, and somehow it all comes together.”
“Deep Fried Dynasty” Cast:
Brett “Juicy” Enright
Brett is one of the busiest vendors in the country. His “Juicy’s” stands travel to fairs all around the country, and at his three State Fair of Texas locations, he specializes in Mexican Loaded Fries, his famous “Outlaw” Burgers, “Texas-Sized” Turkey Legs and dozens of other Fair favorites.
Christi Erpillo and Johnna McKee
This is the first year that Christi and Johnna are running their stands without their beloved mother and namesake, “Fernie,” at the State Fair of Texas. Fernie’s Funnel Cakes was the first stand to bring funnel cakes to the Fair. They have an expanded footprint of five booths and their menu includes the 2021 Big Tex Choice Awards Finalist Fernie’s Deep Fried Toffee Coffee Crunch Cake, Fernie’s Deep Fried Grilled Cheese, and Fernie’s Deep Fried Burnt End Burritos.
Abel “Fried Jesus” Gonzales
Abel is the creator of Fried Butter, Fried PB&J, Fried Cookie Dough, Fried Jambalaya, Fried Pancakes, and Fried Lobster. With these incredibly unique concoctions, he earned the moniker “Fried Jesus.” This five-time Big Tex Choice Award winner is the proprietor of two Vandalay Industries booths at the State Fair of Texas.
Chef Cassy Jones
Chef Cassy has just one booth at the State Fair of Texas, Chef Cassy’s Creations. And out of this booth she sells her signature Deep Fried Collard Greens, in addition to Fried Alligator Eggs Nest and Honey Pecan Chicken Wings.
Tammi Jo Nevin’s-Mayes and Josie Mayes
Tammi Jo and Josie are the second and third generation respectively to run the Nevins’ Concessions booths at the State Fair of Texas. Their nine booths are known for signature Fair foods like cheeseburgers and corn dogs. This year they’ve even debuted a brand-new “Meat-on-a-Stick” booth.
Clint and Gretchen Probst
Clint and Gretchen run two booths at the State Fair of Texas: Gulf Coast Grill, and Crazy Otto’s. Out of those locations, they sell their 2021 Big Tex Choice Awards Finalist Deep Fried I-35 (a brisket and peaches dish inspired by a road trip down Texas’ main highway), their signature Deep Fried Surf and Turf, and Bacon Cheddar Ranch Fries.
Brent and Juan Reaves
The Reaves brothers have four booths at the State Fair of Texas. Started by their father, “Smokey” John Reaves, the brothers are second-generation owners of the “Smokey John’s BBQ” booths. Brent and Juan partnered with Ruth’s Tamales to create two 2021 Big Tex Choice Award Finalists, Crispy Crazy Corn and Brisket Brittle, and are best-known for the juiciest, smokiest turkey legs at the State Fair.
Rick and Tammy Stiffler
Owners of nine booths at the State Fair of Texas, including “Stiffler’s Sweet Spot” and “Stiffler’s Mom’s Cookie Factory.” Their specialties include Fried S’Mores, Fried Oreos, Fried Pumpkin Pie, and Fried Snickers.
Airing back-to-back episodes every Tuesday at 9 p.m. CT, folks can get their Fair food fix on A&E. Viewers can also catch up on the series on-demand and stream on the A&E app and aetv.com. Mark your calendar now to try all these mouthwatering foods and see these concessionaires in action during the 2022 State Fair of Texas, scheduled to run September 30 through October 23, 2022, in historic Fair Park, Dallas.
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