St. Louis Cardinals’ New Food Items
I had the honor to be a guest at the St. Louis Cardinals “Blogger Event” last night. Aside from seeing a wonderful Cardinals’ victory and a masterful pitcher’s duel between Adam Wainwright and Mike Leake, there were quite a few luxuries that we got to partake in. The first thing I will talk about is the new food that is featured at Busch Stadium this year. The media guide we were given gave us a little bit of a preview of what we could expect from the food we were about to be served. I will get to some of the other things later.
The first new item that I will discuss is the Cardinals’ hottest new item, the “Waffle Sandwich”; which consists of Waffles (cooked to order) topped with “breaded chicken breast and maple bacon gravy”. It is also served with “chicken carnitas with crispy bacon, pico de gallo and ranch dressing, and BBQ pulled pork with creamy coleslaw and BBQ sauce”; all versions coming with “queso tater tots”. This sandwich is the pride and joy of the Cardinals’ culinary staff as it is rated #1 out of USA Today’s “17 best new ballpark foods for 2015”. I don’t know that I got an honest try of the sandwich as our waffles were not freshly made leaving them to be quite hard and difficult to eat like a sandwich. However, the maple bacon gravy that the sandwich is topped with was quite good. The sandwich can be found at the “Crowd the Plate Stand in section 148”.
Another new item the Cardinals are debuting this year is the “Quadruple Gooey Burger”. This is “four-four once hamburger patties on a fresh Hawaiian roll and topped with American cheese, signature sauce (think big mac sauce), shredded lettuce, and sliced tomato”. This sounds like an absolutely delicious sandwich but again the small version we were given did not lend itself to sitting under a heat lamp waiting for our arrival as the bread hardened and the burger tasted like it had been sitting for a while. This item can be found at the “Double Play Tap & Grill in section 135”.
The next couple items can be found at both “Broadway BBQ in section 109 and Bacon Station Portable in section 446”. They are the “Bacon Cheddar Bratwurst” and the “Extreme Bacon Sandwich”. The Bratwurst wasn’t really anything special, it tasted like every other brat I’ve had but with BBQ sauce on it. However, the “Extreme Bacon Sandwich” (“Apple wood smoked chopped bacon filled with BBQ spice and ground pork topped with cheddar cheese and wrapped with bacon on a fresh baked Hawaiian bun with BBQ aioli”) was fantastic, you could taste both the pork and bacon and it was very flavorful. I am sure this one is much better when actually ordered at the game as well. A dinner item that I did not have the chance to try was the Cardinals’ version of the Walking Taco. This features your standard beef taco meat, pulled pork, or chicken carnitas served in your choice of a large bag of Fritos or Doritos and topped with sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, and salsa. These can be found throughout the ballpark in sections 266, 432, and 199 (Shrimp Walking Tacos are available at the “Island Grill near section 144”). They will also have beef versions vended in the stands.
The last dinner item I will talk about is the “Turkey Burger” that can be found at the “Double Play Tap & Grill in section 135”. This item features an all white meat turkey patty, fresh Hawaiian roll, arugula, guacamole, pico de gallo. This was an item I had towards the end of the night, the bread again hardened by sitting under a warmer most of the night was hard to eat but the turkey burger itself was quite tasty and was a different item that what you would expect from a ballpark.
On to the best items of the night and in my opinion the winner for the Cardinals and their culinary team. The “Deep Fried Oreo”, yeah that’s right a wonderful cookie that is normally best with a cold glass of milk has been “battered in funnel cake batter, deep fried, and served with a side of whipped cream and chocolate sauce”.
It was absolutely the best thing I ate all night and was a hit with most that had it. These can be found in the “Red Bird Club section 251” and the Crowd the Plate stand in section 148. Another Oreo related dessert that can be found in the “Red Bird Club” as well as the “Oreo/Funnel Cake Portables in sections 454 and 145”, is the “Oreo Churro” which is apparently an
“Oreo battered churro that is served with Oreo creme dipping sauce”, you can pretty much sign me up for anything Oreo related. It was pretty tasty (not sure what Oreo things are not) even without the dipping sauce that I failed to notice was there and was an item again that is not expected to be at a ballpark but is something that apparently is already garnering popularity, as I noticed quite the line as I walked by the stand near section 145.
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Here are a few other new items at the ballpark this year that were not on our menu last night. The “Big Kahuna” which is “an 8 oz jumbo ice cream sandwich cookie (available at all of the Ballpark Favorite stands and available throughout the stadium via vendors)”, “Bavarian Pretzel” which is a extra large pretzel that media guide describes as “large enough to share with family or friends” (found in sections 141, 101, 271, 264, 266, 432), and the “Pretzel Bites” made by “A Different Twist” that come with “white queso dipping sauce”.
Kudos, to the St. Louis Cardinals for delivering an entirely different array of ballpark foods and taking advantage of the trends across the league as far as stadium food is concerned. It is things like this that will bring in more people like your average fan or even a person who has little to no interest in the team or sport. Even though I am a ballpark traditionalist when it comes to food, (I still believe you can’t beat a ballpark hot dog and souvenir soda) it is a good thing to see clubs branch out and try something new.
What foods do you look forward to trying this season?
All food locations and descriptions are courtesy of the St. Louis Cardinals’ Media Guide.