SunTrust Park will seat over 40,000 baseball fans, and Peter Smithing, the park’s executive chef, said feeding such a big crowd will be a challenge, but one his team is ready for.
“I’ve done events that are this large at different times, but never on an 81-game basis,” said Smithing, who came to SunTrust Park from the Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek. “But I’ve got a great staff that has actually done it, and I’m guiding them, and they’ve been with the Braves for a year, almost all of them … We’ve got a good core staff.”
Smithing and SunTrust Park food service provider Delaware North opened the gates of the stadium Thursday to offer a sneak peek at how the fans will feast on game days.
Smithing said the main idea behind the stadium’s menu is “a taste of Braves country,” which will encompass food favorites from across the South.
“I’m from North Carolina,” Smithing said. “I grew up watching the Braves. That was our home team. So why don’t we activate that with everybody? So we’ve got South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia. And then we’ve got food offerings for each of those. So we decided from my home, it’s pulled pork with a little vinegar-based sauce. South Carolina, pimento cheese. So we activated those with things we knew fans would like as well, (like) Nashville hot chicken.”
Representing Georgia are Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q, Hugh Acheson 1st and 3rd Hot Dog and Sausage Shack, Chick-fil-A and Waffle House.
Mississippi is represented by a blackened catfish po’boy taco, and Alabama residents can get a taste of home with a gigantic fried pork “tomahawk” chop served on an extra-large potato roll with collard green slaw and white barbecue sauce.
The park is also touting its “farm to fan” program, which incorporates ingredients from over 40 Atlanta-area farms into dishes served in the park.
Here are some of the offerings at snack stands that were open Thursday.
If you enter the stadium from the Chophouse entrance, which is behind right field, and turn right, this will be the first concessions area you see.
It’s in the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta section and offers ballpark favorites like hot dogs, chips and even pretzels shaped like the Braves’ “A” logo.
One thing you won’t be able to get at Sandlot Snacks is a bag of peanuts. This stand is nut-free to protect those with allergies to nuts.
You can, however, get a kids meal that includes a hot dog, a bag of chips and a small drink served in a souvenir helmet-shaped bowl for $7.
Here you can try the blackened catfish po’boy taco, or get street-style tacos filled with chicken, pork or barbacoa beef wrapped in flour tortillas.
A trio of tacos or a taco bowl will cost $12 for regular ticket holders or $10.50 for those with season tickets.
Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q
The bros will serve up the same barbecue from their Little Five Points location.
A pulled pork or chopped brisket sandwich with coleslaw or baked beans will cost $14.
A slice of cheese or pepperoni costs $7 for regular ticket holders or $6.50 for season ticket holders.
The “burgerizza” followed the Braves from Turner Field. It is a cheeseburger, but the patty weighs two pounds and the buns are 8-inch pepperoni pizzas. It comes with a quarter-pound of bacon and six slices of cheddar cheese.
This shop with a convenience store feel sells a variety of drinks, ice creams and snacks.
Those with an intolerance to gluten can get a gluten-free hotdog here out of a special hotdog cart to avoid cross-contamination.
Gu’s Dumpling Cart, aka Intentional Wok
Chef Gu’s boiled dumplings can normally be found at the Krog Street Market in Atlanta, but they will be served at SunTrust Park in a cart with the punny sign “Intentional Wok.”
In addition to the dumplings, which are served with a sweet and spicy Zhong sauce, the cart will offer Chengdu noodles and cold egg noodles served in a sweet and spicy sauce mixed with bean sprouts and topped with garlic, sesame seeds and fresh green onion.
Gu will also offer chicken pad Thai made with gluten-free rice noodles.
Each of the offerings will cost $9.
You know what Chick-fil-A is. It’s the fried chicken place with the beloved illiterate cow mascot.
At SunTrust Park, a classic Chick-fil-A sandwich will cost $6.75, as will an 8-pack of chicken nuggets. An order of waffle fries will set you back $4, and a regular drink will be another $5.50.
Named after the year the Atlanta Braves got their start, back when they were called the Boston Red Stockings, 1871 Grille is the place to go for burgers, chicken tenders or hot dogs.
Special menu items include the pimento cheese patty melt, which is served with caramelized onions and smoked paprika on rye bread and will cost $12.
This place is named after the fact that you can watch a man use a machine to slice potatoes into fries.
The name may be simple, but the fries are top notch. Diners can order their frittes topped with a variety of seasonings, including garlic-rosemary and buffalo. An order of fries can cost between $6 and $10.
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