Community Spotlight: Family, Fun & Food Brought To “Taste Of Dorset”
It’s not unusual for the small town of Dorset to see more than a thousand visitors in August thanks to their annual Taste of Dorset event.
For around 30 years now, the “Restaurant Capital of The World” has enticed visitors with dozens of mouth-watering bites that you can only find in the town.
“Taste of Dorset, it’s a fun day where everyone gets out. There’s family events. There’s all sorts of things that people can do. Tasting food and having a good time. Tons of bands and music. We have, what, 7 bands going on all around the area so that people can go listen to different types of music and enjoy time together as a family,” says Beth Durgin of Dorset House of Companeros.
The event happens every 1st Sunday in August. The restaurants of Dorset will set up shop outside and cook for the crowds. Almost everyone in the small community of 25 participates in some way.
“Compeneros, Dorset House, we have the chicken coup over there. La Pasta, the general store and then we have Meadow Brooks, Lundrigans. There’s a church that sales corn over there, an antique shop. There’s also a stainless glass shop and we all just kind of come together,” says Beth.
Attendees this weekend were offered everything from pizza and burritos to ice cream, fish, and ribs. There were also different kinds of beers and special virgin strawberry daiquiris for drinks.
“I had some quesadillas,” says attendee Daniel Otto who came to Dorset from Fargo.
“I had nachos. I wanted to get the Korean beef but they ran out rice,” says another attendee Shawn Glenn, who came up from Minneapolis.
“Sweet corn was delicious! I mean, it was fantastic,” adds Otto.
“And if you like Italian, they have Italian for you, too,” says Glenn.
Ana Koehler, an attendee from Germany says, “I tried a lot of the fried stuff because we don’t have cheese curds in Germany or, I think my favorite were the fried beans or the fried pickles.”
When they say thousands of people come to Taste of Dorset each year, it’s not an understatement. Cars are usually lined up on both of side of the highway right as the event starts at noon.
“The streets full and we have just thousands of people running around all the way down to the Highway 34, there’s cars lined up,” says Levi Durgin of Dorset House Of Companeros.
The party doesn’t stop when the food is put away at 3 pm. Directly after Taste, there’s a cornhole tournament and also a street dance.
“Being here in Northern Minnesota, it is different. I wouldn’t have expected it to be as different as it is, but it’s like different in a good way because you can see that the areas a bit different and the minds of the people is slightly different but still, they’re so open minded. They’re friendly,” says Koehler.