It's almost baseball season and, I, for one, am less excited about the actual nine innings than I am about drinking beer and eating ballpark food on a warm, spring day. Hot dogs are great, but we've been there, done that. From cheese curds to crab sandwiches, here are eight stadiums to get your grub on. Play ball!
Dungeness crab sandwich at AT&T Park (San Francisco Giants)
This ballpark has a reputation for killer stadium food and the Crazy Crab'z counter is kind of a big deal. Their crab sandwich is loaded with fresh local meat that's stuffed into warm sourdough bread. Grab a handful of napkins and a fork – this bad boy oozes with butter and crab.
Primanti Brothers sandwich at PNC Park (Pittsburgh Pirates)
This behemoth of a sandwich dates back to the 1930s when Joe Primanti opened his cart selling lunch to local truckers looking to refuel on the go. Today, the thick slices of bread piled high with sliced steak, coleslaw, tomatoes, and French fries are beloved by Pirates fans.
Pit beef sandwich at Oriole Park at Oriole Park at Camden Yards (Baltimore Orioles)
Boog Powell made many worthy contributions to the baseball diamond for almost 17 years; but today, he happens to be doing even better work off the field. Do yourself a favor and march past the bevy of Maryland crab cake stands to fetch yourself a pit beef sandwich at Boog's BBQ.
ShackBurger at Citi Field (New York Mets)
New York City may be a foodie mecca, but until Citi Field came along, ballparks in this metropolis were suffering from more than this lackluster team (ouch). Danny Meyer's cult-favorite ShackBurgers have super-juicy 100 percent all-natural Angus beef and are topped with special ShackSauce. They're best with the crinkle fries and a cold beer.
BBQ stuffed baked potato at Minute Maid Park (Houston Astros)
Baked potatoes and ballgames don't exactly go hand-in-hand, but this beast of a spud is a must-eat. The big boy made by Maverick Smokehouse is loaded with brisket, onions, jalapeños and is smothered in cheese and barbecue sauce. Loosen your belt a notch because everything really is bigger in Texas.
Tony Luke's cheesesteak at Citizens Bank Park (Philadelphia Phillies)
Don't eat before you visit this stadium. In fact, fast for a few days. Citizens Bank Park is renowned for dynamite, stick-to-your-ribs ballpark food and Tony Luke's is a fan favorite. Their cheesesteak is worthy of the line, with heaps of meat on crusty bread to soak up the juices. Order it early so you'll have room for the hot pork sub topped with garlicky broccoli rabe and sharp provolone.
The ribeye stack at Kaufmann Stadium (Kansas City Royals)
Kansas City is a damn fine barbecue city, so it's fitting that KC All-Star Barbecue has a pitmaster on staff manning two massive smokers at the stadium. The "Stack" is a meaty mess of smoked ribeye steak, bacon, onion rings, cheddar, sautéed mushrooms, and barbecue sauce. They had us at ‘onion rings.'
Cheese curds at Miller Park (Milwaukee Brewers)
The good people of Milwaukee (and the whole state of Wisconsin, for that matter) love their cheese, and for this, we are thankful (even vegetarians can rejoice). This impressive list of cheesy choices is right at home at a baseball stadium (in other words, it goes well with beer): greasy poutine, grilled cheese, cheese fries, and best of all…cheese curds. These fried balls of cheese are the perfect snack for popping between burgers, hot dogs, or frosty beverages. Plus, you can find them at just about every concessions stand at Miller Park.
What (and where) are your favorite ballpark eats? Share them below!
MORE from ShermansTravel: