Nats’ New Stadium Eats, From Half Smokes (Yay!) to Gelato

Pittsburgh’s PNC Park has Primanti Brothers’ famous beef sandwiches. Baltimore’s Camden Yards has Boog’s barbecue. And now, finally, the Nats’ new stadium will step up to the culinary plate, offering more than flaccid hotdogs and sodden chicken tenders. When the ballpark opens March 29, there will be plenty of familiar local eats on offer. Here’s a sampling of what to expect.

• The most exciting addition to the stadium lineup is Ben’s Chili Bowl. The venerable U Street hangout has signed on to serve its signature half smokes and chili dogs, plus turkey burgers and veggie chili.

• More chili—including bowls of Texas-style chili with mac and cheese—will be ladled out by Hard Times, the Alexandria-based chain. Wings, too.

Cantina Marina, the beach-shack-like bar on the Southwest waterfront—the place is so laid-back that Corona comes in a can—plans to set up shop with frozen drinks and Tex-Mex fare.

• Sick of Dippin’ Dots? Gifford’s Ice Cream & Candy will sell ice cream by the scoop and ice-cream sandwiches. La Piccola Gelateria will serve gelato and sorbet.

Mayorga Coffee, the Silver Spring-based roaster, will pull lattes and cappuccinos at four carts around the stadium.

• Barbecue chain Red Hot & Blue plans to dish out the same barbecue beef, brisket, and pulled chicken and pork it has had at RFK for the past couple of years.

• Gaithersburg-based Noah's Pretzels will sell regular and gluten-free soft pretzels.

A good start, to be sure. But we've still got a wish list: Fried fish sandwiches from Horace & DickiesMarket Lunch blueberry pancakes for those early games…fried chicken from Oohhs & Aahhs…corned-beef sandwiches from Deli City…Italian subs from A. Litteri.

What would you like to munch on as you cheer on Dmitri Young? Let us know in the comments. 

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.