The Nats Make Concessions
Svrluga dropped an important word in his notes column today: Centerplate. As in, the new concessionaire at the Nats' new stadium. As in, the outfit responsible for the food at AT&T, which, as we all know, has finished first or second in the most-vegetarian friendly park standings three years in a row. Centerplate also does the food for the Mariners (third-most veggie friendly), and the Durham Bulls and Portland Beavers (first and second on the minor league list).
To shamelessly quote from the company's propaganda:
To extend the rich dining tradition of San Francisco into the ballpark and create a one-of-a-kind experience for fans, Centerplate formed agreements with local institutions like Ghirardelli Chocolate; The Stinking Rose, a San Francisco mainstay known for its famous Forty Clove Garlic Chicken Sandwich; and Gordon Biersch Brewery, maker of quality lagers, and home of the original garlic fries. Centerplate has also incorporated Northern California's nearby wine country by designing and constructing numerous wine bars throughout the stadium, offering more than forty California wines by the glass.
Also, when Centerplate recently took over the Asheville Tourists' concessions, better beer followed, accordign to the local paper: "Two Asheville breweries have their suds on draft: Highland and French Broad. You can get Smithwick's Irish ale, Guinness Stout, Corona, Sweetwater 420, even a kolsch called Pyramid Curve Ball."
The company also changed the offerings at Devil Rays' games this spring, according to Nation's Restaurant News:
Among the upgrades is the new Sand Bar Bullpen Beach, a party area behind the visiting team's bullpen, where fans are served specialty cocktails, such as margaritas and mojitos, in an upscale beach resort decor....New menu items at the ballpark include a grouper fillet sandwich with citrus mayonnaise; whole turkey legs; a steak and asiago panini; a turkey and pesto panini; and the new Sting 'em Dog, a hot dog piled with spicy chili and shredded Cheddar cheese.
And this season, according to the New York Times, Centerplate apparently helped introduce authentic Washington Heights foodstuffs to Yankee Stadium, including ground beef or cheese empanadas; chicken in salsa with sweet plantains, rice and beans; Cuban sandwiches with plantain chips; and papas rellenas, or fried stuffed potatoes.
I was all ready to head to Southwest and get in line for my first veggie BLT panini with the accompanying papusas and Ben's Veggie Chili and mojitos and Dominion Spring Brew when I realized that Centerplate also does the food at FedEx Field. So we'll see.
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