Each year, Minnesota State Fair officials award 13 businesses with the title of best of the best. There are more than 1,000 vendors, attractions, exhibits, etc. so receiving a “Best Award” is quite the accomplishment. A Rochester native was one of the recipients this year. See the full list of 2021 winners below.

State Fair officials say the winners were selected based on these factors: Exceptional, efficient customer service and an outstanding experience for fair guests; knowledgeable staff with positive attitudes who are courteous, thoughtful, and professional; an amazing visual presentation and positive image; a premium quality product/service; and for offering a great value.

2021 Minnesota State Fair “Best Awards”

  • Angry Minnow Vintage - Sells a variety of vintage custom apparel and accessories. (Located at West End Market)
  • Baba’s - Features a variety of unique hummus bowls. (Located on the east side of Underwood Street just south of Little Farm Hands)
  • Bailey Builds - Creates new and reclaimed wood art mosaics. (Located on the south side of Judson Avenue outside the Lee & Rose Warner Coliseum)
  • Gopher State Expositions and the Equinox - (This ride is located at Mighty Midway)
  • GoServ Global - Nonprofit organization that provides modified grain bins as housing and other shelter in areas recovering from disasters. (Located on the west side of Underwood Street between Wright & Dan Patch avenues)
  • Hanging Garden - Sells hand-crafted terrariums and other plant accents. (Located at the International Bazaar)
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  • The Hideaway Speakeasy - Features artisan sandwiches, wine and more. (Located in the Veranda Grandstand upper level, northwest section)
  •  Kim O’s Concession and Lean & Toss - (This game is located at Mighty Midway)
  • Latitude Studios Co. - Repurposes shipping containers into unique and functional spaces. (Located on the north side of Judson Avenue, just east of Liggett Street)
  • Rutana’s Hot Apple Dumplings - Sells hot apple dumplings with ice cream. (Located on the north side of Randall Avenue between Cooper & Cosgrove streets, outside the Progress Center)
  • Solem Concessions Cheese Curds & Mini Donuts – Rochester native Jeremey Solem started Solem Concessions more than 20 years ago and is seen all around southeast Minnesota at various events throughout the summer. At the State Fair, Solem is selling blueberry mini donuts, Cajun-flavored cheese curds, and more. (Located on the east side of Underwood Street, just south of Murphy Avenue)
  • Tinsley Amusements and Charlie Chopper - (This ride is located at Kidway)
  • Waterstone Fire Tables - One of the 13 participants in the fair’s Adopt-a-Garden program. (Located on the east side of Liggett Street outside the Sheep & Poultry Barn)

The Minnesota State Fair continues through Labor Day.

Top spots in Rochester with amazing customer service!

Not sure if this is a priority for you but the majority of people like to see a little bit of R-E-S-P-E-C-T when they are buying things from a business. It could be ordering food at a restaurant, buying clothes at a store, or where you are filling up your gas tank for your car. Any place you spend money should have stellar customer service. If you've had a run of bad customer service lately, try going to one of these places in Rochester that were recommended by hundreds of people in town.