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Official State Foods & Beverages

alkapal May 20, 2011 09:02 AM

I thought you might like a look at official state foods and beverages.

Foods: http://www.netstate.com/states/tables/state_food.htm
Beverages: http://www.netstate.com/states/tables/state_beverages.htm

Thanks to the Southern Food and Beverage Museum, and author Liz Williams: http://southernfood.org/okra/?p=711

Notables: Alabama has whisky -- the only state with the gumption to sanction booze.
Indiana -- clean livin' Indianans recognize...WATER!
Nebraska's official soft drink is Kool-Aid.

On a little tangent, but....I see many states have miilk as their official beverage, but that takes on greater significance as a Pennsylvanian Amish dairy farmer is now being prosecuted by the feds for daring to take fresh, unadulterated, safe and wholesome UNPASTEURIZED milk across the state line into Maryland. This food police statism has gotten so disgusting and pathetic!

  1. m
    mpjmph May 23, 2011 10:55 AM

    North Carolina has an official red berry (strawberry) AND an official blue berry (blueberry). We also have an official fruit (scuppernong grapes), just in case you didn't have enough small fruits to deal with.

    1. s
      Sherri May 23, 2011 10:36 AM

      Unfortunately, I live in a state with no official food & beverage yet in Arizona we have a state gun (Colt something or other) and state reptile (rattlesnake). I'm not thrilled with the priorities.

      I would like to nominate some of our wonderful mescal made with local agave plants. Chips and salsa to accompany the mescal could be our state food choice.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Sherri
        bushwickgirl May 23, 2011 01:24 PM

        Must move there. Not for the snake, though.

      2. LoBrauHouseFrau May 23, 2011 09:37 AM

        They left the official state sandwich of Massachusetts off the list. The Fluffernutter.

        1. j
          Japanecdote May 22, 2011 05:35 PM

          North Carolina's state food should be pulled pork, but I'm afraid of the civil war that would ensue when they try to decide which sauce to put on top...

          1. DonShirer May 22, 2011 03:37 PM

            With the states of the union in the shape they are in, you'd think that state legislatures would have more important things to do than choosing state foods, beverages, fruits, (and yes) insects.

            I see CT doesn't have a food (though they do have an insect). I hear they favored clam chowder but couldn't bear choosing one labeled Manhattan, Boston or Rhode Island.

            1 Reply
            1. re: DonShirer
              mpjmph May 23, 2011 10:52 AM

              I don't know about other states, but most of the state symbols in North Carolina (my home state) were chosen because they represent significant industries in the state. It may seem silly, but selecting the sweet potato as the official vegetable of NC does contribute a bit to the growth of the sweet potato industry, and it really doesn't take much effort on the part of the legislature. Of course, it's also worth considering that most of these designations were passed during times of prosperity and stability (at least in NC), so it's possible there weren't more important things to do during the 15 minutes it took to vote.

            2. monavano May 22, 2011 10:47 AM

              The food list seems lame with so many states that have NOTHING listed! I mean, come on-- New Jersey has the tomato. How hard was that one?
              Actually, I Googled around and say many "State Food" lists.

              1 Reply
              1. re: monavano
                goodhealthgourmet May 23, 2011 03:23 PM

                I mean, come on-- New Jersey has the tomato. How hard was that one?
                you'd think, right? yet *none* of these sources list it as a state food. meanwhile the blueberry was declared as the official NJ state fruit in 2004...

              2. LorenM May 22, 2011 10:31 AM

                A little bit tricky but for Colorado the beverage would have to be beer wtih the huge abundance of micro and macro breweries, The Great American Beerfest, etc.
                Food is a bit tougher, Buffalo (bison) maybe, Rocky Mountain Oysters (though I don't think all that many people actually eat them much), Colorado Lamb, or maybe Rainbow Trout. or Colorado-style Pork Green Chile. Nothing really stands out as THE State Food here that I can think of.

                1. bayoucook May 22, 2011 05:48 AM

                  It's hard to answer for Mississippi because the lower south is so different from the rest of the state. But for here: Barq's root beer and a shrimp poboy. To start.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: bayoucook
                    natewrites May 22, 2011 08:05 AM

                    Similar here, Bayoucook. Our eastern end of the state is quite different than our western end.

                    For example, we have "kuchen" and "fry bread" listed. Kuchen clearly represents the white European settlers on the eastern side; whereas the "frybread" represents the Native American population prevalent here on the western side.

                    I've scarfed down way more Indian fry bread than I have Kuchen, which I don't think I've ever had.

                    Indian Tacos = YUMMY!

                  2. m
                    Mag454 May 21, 2011 10:53 PM

                    Hmm Hawaii isn't listed but I'm sure our state food is spam...

                    Our state drink?? Blue Hawaii or mai tai??

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: Mag454
                      KaimukiMan May 22, 2011 09:39 AM

                      spam gets all the attention as a weird food, which may well qualify it, but as Hawaii's rice consumption is almost triple the rest of the country (50 lbs/person/year vs just about 18 lbs), my vote might go there.

                      For alcololic beverage, you are probably right on target, at least image wise,
                      for non-alcoholic... Fruit Punch and its cousins (passion orange, pog, guava nectar, etc)

                      1. re: KaimukiMan
                        mamachef May 22, 2011 10:02 AM

                        Re: the nonalcoholic options, wasn't Hawaiian Punch initially developed as a shave ice flavor? Would that put it in the running?

                        1. re: KaimukiMan
                          alkapal May 22, 2011 12:14 PM

                          hey, this may place me in the chow hall of shame, but i love the flavor of the old hawaiian punch drink!

                          1. re: alkapal
                            bushwickgirl May 23, 2011 01:23 PM

                            Shameful, you. ;)

                            1. re: bushwickgirl
                              alkapal May 23, 2011 02:38 PM

                              mmm…need to go buy some now! ah, the power of suggestion. maybe i'll need to add some rum!

                          2. re: KaimukiMan
                            KaimukiMan May 22, 2011 04:01 PM

                            fruit punch is a longtime favorite here in Honolulu, and is available at fast food chains, sold by the can like soda at most convenience stores, by the 6pack in grocery stores, and by the flat at the big box stores, along with the flavor variations above. Not really sure if the syrups were developed for drinking then used for shave ice or vice versa. And while you might find fruit punch in various places on the mainland I've not seen passion-orange, pineapple-orange, guava nectar, etc.

                            1. re: KaimukiMan
                              KaimukiMan May 22, 2011 09:00 PM

                              website for the most popular brand


                        2. goodhealthgourmet May 21, 2011 11:24 AM

                          topic comes up every so often. you might be interested in this article someone linked to in a similar thread:

                          1. a
                            amazinc May 21, 2011 11:06 AM

                            Texas doesn't have the guts to make it a state drink, but Lone Star Beer (but only in long neck bottles) gets my vote! My other choice is Sweet Iced Tea known around these parts as "Sweet Tea" everyone already understands the "iced" par.t

                            1. mamachef May 21, 2011 10:57 AM

                              I'm pretty sure Ohio's state beverage is tomato juice, but don't quote me. ; )

                              1. c
                                calliope_nh May 21, 2011 06:03 AM

                                New Hampshire had no official state fruit until 5-6 years ago. A group of 4th graders proposed the pumpkin as part of a civics lesson on how the government passed bills. When other groups heard of this, especially apple growers, lobby became fierce but the pumpkin won out.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: calliope_nh
                                  alkapal May 21, 2011 07:21 AM

                                  i love it -- the grassroots pumpkin campaign!

                                2. bushwickgirl May 21, 2011 05:20 AM

                                  New York's gotta be apple something or apple everything, cheddar and wine. Forget the milk.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: bushwickgirl
                                    al b. darned May 21, 2011 08:31 PM

                                    While not official, a recent poll showed New Yorkers prefer corn over onions for a state veg.


                                    1. re: al b. darned
                                      bushwickgirl May 23, 2011 01:23 PM

                                      Yes, corn, I saw that recently, and apples, which are a fruit. So we have a fruit and a veg. I have no idea why onions would even be considered.

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