Aramark is working with local flavors and hometown chefs this fall at the nine professional football stadiums where it provides foodservice to offer new items that will resonate with customers in each market.
Many of the company's new items are localized variations of ballpark classics, ranging from hot dogs to nachos and sandwiches.
“Our chefs spent the last off-season working really hard trying what they can to enhance fans’ game experience,” said Chris Culver, vice president of culinary at Philadelphia-based Aramark.
At Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Philadelphia Eagles, Aramark is offering Italian nachos with sausage Bolognese, mozzarella cheese sauce, house-made ricotta and jalapeños. At M&T Bank Stadium, the Baltimore Ravens’ home field, the nachos are topped with crab dip, jack cheese, tomatoes and scallions.
Other nacho variations include:
• Triple meat nachos with chili, pulled
• Barbecue pork nachos with pulled pork, cheesy corn, pit-smoked beans, pickles, red onions and Heinz Field signature barbecue sauce at the home of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
• Chicken Florentine nachos with chicken artichoke Florentine sauce and Parmesan cheese at Paul Brown Stadium, home of the Cincinnati Bengals.
• Buffalo chicken nachos with buffalo chicken, cheese sauce, blue cheese crumbles, celery and blue cheese dressing at Reliant Stadium, home of the Houston Texans.
Aramark has also created localized versions of sandwiches:
• The Allegheny Burger at Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers, is topped with shaved kielbasa, Cheddar, ketchup, caramelized onions, sauerkraut aïoli and a fried pierogi.
• Pass Interference, a play on a local roast pork sandwich traditionally made with sharp provolone and broccoli raab, will be served at Lincoln Financial Field. Aramark’s version is made with arugula, fontina cheese and garlic jus on a seeded Italian roll.
• Chicken flatbread, made with sundried tomato pesto, marinated tomatoes, apples, bacon and butter lettuce, is debuting at M&T Bank Stadium.
• The Who Dey Melt, which is a grilled cheese sandwich with the option of adding bacon, macaroni and cheese, or both, will be available at Paul Brown Stadium.
Aramark has given the classic hot dog a makeover and is offering it in the following formats:
• The Long Bomb Bratwurst at O.co Coliseum, home of the Oakland Raiders, is a one-pound, 20-inch seasoned pork sausage with onion-bacon jam and brown-mustard mayonnaise sauce, served on a grilled sourdough baguette.
• The Arrowhead Dog at Arrowhead stadium is topped with bacon, diced red onion and blue cheese crumbles.
• The Silver Star Local artisan Cheddar & jalapeño bratwurst at Heinz Field has caramelized onions and peppers with stadium mustard.
• Local favorites in Minnesota, Sheboygan bratwurst and hot dogs, will be offered at Mall of America Field, home of the Vikings.
• The Slider hot dog trio at Reliant Stadium includes three mini hot dogs with a choice of 20 different topping options, including crispy Spam hash.
“It’s not something we’d do in every market, but it’s a big hit in Houston,” Culver said of the Spam hash.
Additionally, in Cleveland, Aramark has teamed up with the Browns to launch the Cleveland Browns Hospitality Group, offering special menus for club and luxury suite levels at the stadium, including menu items from local celebrity chefs Michael Symon, Rocco Whalen and Jonathon Sawyer. Among the items are Sawyer’s Devils on Horseback — bacon-wrapped dates with roasted Fresno peppers, bittersweet chocolate and almonds — which are available for $120 for a party of 12. Symon’s brisket chili, with peppers, tomatoes, aged Cheddar and sour cream, is $150 for a party of 12, the same price as Rocco’s Meatball Bar, featuring his signature Mamma Rosie’s meatball’s, Rocco’s mozzarella meatballs, and chicken basil-roasted garlic meatballs.
Culver said the menu items were developed during the off-season and tested by guests during special events. “We were talking about these really as the playoffs were going on last year,” he said. “We tried to seek feedback at every opportunity.”
Culver said the items would likely be adjusted over the course of the season, and very successful items might be expanded to different markets.
Editor's note: This story updates the number of stadiums for which Aramark provides foodservice.
This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Correction: January 29, 2013 An earlier version of this article has been updated to include the correct spelling of Jonathon Sawyer’s name.