Walking into historic Wrigley Field two hours before game time allowed me ample time to check out the Bartman seat (sorry Cubs fans), watch a little BP, and most importantly figure out what’s for lunch.
I asked a gentleman working the Cubs authentic shop what he suggests I try. “We have these new tots,” he said. “Loaded with Cholula hot sauce, mozzarella, and green onions, they’re awesome.” He continued by telling me about a hot dog stand where you can get unique styles of dogs. He said “go for the Heater”. He couldn’t have made two better suggestions.
Lucky for me and anyone else that wishes to indulge in the tots and a dog, they are sold at the same stand. As prescribed, I ordered the Cholula tots and a “Heater”. The heater is your standard hot dog topped with blue cheese coleslaw and buffalo wing sauce. The Cholula covered tots were hands down the best tots I’ve ever had. The surplus about of sauce wasn’t enough to make them overwhelming and the cheese gave them a creamy taste. Add in the chopped green onions for some flavor and crunch and you have a great ballpark snack.
The “Heater” hot dog was exactly what I expected, delicious. Personally I like hot dogs with slaw on them and the blue cheese taste made it a little more unique. Factor in the buffalo wing sauce and you have a tasty dog with some zing. If you haven’t had a dog with slaw on it before and aren’t afraid to try it, I highly suggest it!
If you’re like me, when someone says “ballpark food” you think of three things: hot dogs, nachos and beer. Those three are a staple of every baseball stadium in America, regardless of the hometown twists they might put on each item.
Well, the A’s don’t really attract a ton of fans, but the ones that do go can snag a pretty scrumptious snack. And that’s exactly what I did this past Sunday. Before watching the A’s offense make Hiroki Kuroda look like Hideo Nomo, I scarfed down on this pile of meaty goodness:
Those are normal nachos, but stuffed into a collectible plastic A’s helmet. They were in there so tight, I thought the plastic would bust. On top is some amazing Kalua pork and a little guacamole for color. You also have the option of putting jalapenos and/or pico de gallo on top, creating an even more colorful, delicious treat.
I went with the standard stuff, and I’ll tell you…I definitely got my $9’s worth. There were so many things right with the nachos, I don’t even know where to start.
The chips themselves were normal ballpark chips, but like I said, this helmet was packed FULL of them. The normal helping of nachos for just $3 less is about one-third as many (not to mention how badly they skimp on the cheese…there’s never any left for me to finger-pick out of there!).
And I guess whoever is running the pork nachos stand knows you’re paying almost double digits, because they just heaped on the cheese. Not to the point of soaking the chips into a soggy mess, but enough so that every single delectable chip was smothered with creamy deliciousness.
The guac added a little flavor just for kicks, but what really did it was the Kalua pork. Last time I got meat like that on a game day meal, there was a ton of fat, too much salt and absolutely no presentation (ironically enough, that was from an upscale restaurant also inside o.Co Coliseum).
This Kalua pork was tender, delicious and plentiful. You can see from the picture that most of the middle of that helmet is stuffed with pork. Honestly, the only other time I’ve been this full after a ballpark meal was when I got “all you can eat seats” – once at Safeco Field, once at Dodger Stadium.
But never, ever have I been so full and satisfied from one single plate of anything at a baseball game. I loved it. It was amazing. Go buy a $2 ticket for an A’s game (trust me, you’ll find a seat) and make sure to stop by the Kalua pork nachos stand down the left field line, almost to the bleachers.
Besides, even if you end up hating them for some reason…you have a brand new batting helmet for your infant!
Thanks for reading! For more Chowin’ Down, look through the Three Up, Three Down archives.
– Jeremy (@Jamblinman)