10 Greatest Ballparks for Foodies
Citi(C) Field, New York
Heavy hitters: Shake Shack burgers, cannoli, hot pastrami on rye
The stadium is named after a bank that took billions in bailout money. It is owned by folks who were cleaned out by Bernie Madoff's ponzi scheme. The team on the field is more than .500 despite having its payroll slashed and its stars depart.
At least the food is decent. Mama's of Corona has some great Italian sandwiches, but its blue-and-orange stuffed pastry tubes are the best snack at the park. The hot pastrami has its own stand, is piled high between slices of rye bread and comes packaged with a sour pickle. If you want a real taste of what New York has been offering in the past decade or so, skip a couple of innings to wait on line for a burger at Shake Shack. Danny Meyer's burger ranks among the city's best, but the hourlong wait -- similar to that at the stand's first location in Madison Square Park -- is one of the most overrated, touristy NYC experiences that doesn't involve a cupcake or Cosmopolitan.
Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore
Heavy hitters: Boog's BBQ
There's a lot of barbecue in big-league baseball these days, and former Oriole Boog Powell isn't the only retired player serving it.
He was the first when he opened his stand nearly 20 years ago and is still the best when it comes to serving up spicy sauce with a dash of his own personality. Powell himself runs the grill and dishes out the hickory-smoked pork, turkey and beef throughout the game, tormenting those who pass up his stand by letting the smoke from his pit flow over the outfield all night long. The Kansas City Royals will claim better BBQ at Gates' in Kaufmann Stadium (and they'd have a strong argument) and ex-jocks in Philly, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee and San Diego stand by their own fare. But Boog's provides a bellyful of authenticity few can match.
Petco Field, San Diego
Heavy hitters: Sonoran hot dogs and shrimp tacos
With apologies to Randy Jones' barbecue, the best San Diego offerings originate south of the border. San Diego restaurant Rubio's brought its shrimp and fish tacos up from Baja nearly 30 years ago and loads them up with cabbage, salsa and garlic sauce. The ballpark versions are pricier, but no less perfect. If you're craving something a bit meatier, a Sonoran hot dog comes wrapped in bacon and jammed with onions, tomatoes and pinto beans. It's all served on a potato bun, then topped with mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise and jalapeno sauce. Thank you, Mexico.