Podcast Episode 112: The Joy of Ballpark Food


An interview with Bennett Jacobstein


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Bennett Jacobstein

Bennett Jacobstein

Bennet Jacobstein, author of The Joy of Ballpark Food: From Hot Dogs to Haute Cuisine, talks to us about what foodies can find at different baseball stadiums around the country.

  • Hot dogs and sausages are not the same thing.
  • The quality of ballpark food was elevated in the 90s as new stadiums were built and food television shows took off.
  • Stadiums have highlighted regional foods.
  • Gordon Biersch‘s founder Dan Gordon introduced garlic fries at Candlestick Park in 1994.
  • The song “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” was written in 1908.
  • The Yankees replaced Cracker Jacks at one point, but brought it back after a public outcry.
  • San Francisco Giant Gordon Biersch Garlic Fries

    San Francisco Giant Gordon Biersch Garlic Fries

    Veggie Happy spearheaded the movement to get veggie dogs sold at ballpark stadiums.

  • Andrew Zimmern has a stand in the Minnesota ballpark.
  • Rocky Mountain Oysters are bull testicles.
  • “The Big Six” are the food companies that service the major ballparks.
  • As you go from ballpark to ballpark, try the hot dogs at each to see how they’re done differently.
  • Proceeds from Bennett’s book go to Second Harvest Food Bank.

 

Food for Thought

  • The Joy of Ballpark Food Q: In what year were Cracker Jacks first served at a baseball game?
  • A: 1896 in Atlantic City.

 

Out of the Frying Pan

Here’s what Bennet recommends you try at each ballpark:

  • Yankees Stadium in New York City: Chicken and Waffles.
  • Fenway Park in Boston: Lobster Roll and a cuban sandwich.
  • Wrigley Field in Chicago: Chicago-style hot dog with Vienna beef.
  • Turner Field in Atlanta: Boiled peanuts.
  • Marlins Park in Miami: Cuban dishes.
  • Safeco Field in Seattle: The Ivar’s hot dog (with fish) and cream cheese hot dog.
  • Nationals Park in Washington D.C.: A cauliflower hot dog and presidential cupcakes.
  • Chicago White Sox Chicago-Style Hot Dog

    Chicago White Sox Chicago-Style Hot Dog

    Busch Stadium in St. Louis: The BBQ.

  • Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles: Tommy Lasorda Spumoni ice cream.
  • AT&T Park in San Francisco: Crab salad, lamb sausages, and Gordon Biersch garlic fries.


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