Archives For Foodie

Over-the-top milkshakes, an exclusive pilsner, vegan sausage and hamburger options, fresh takes on nachos, chicken sandwiches and more.

No, I’m not listing the menu of a trendy hotspot in the Meatpacking District. Those are some of the new food offerings at Yankee Stadium this season.

“Ultimately, a lot of these stands are built with flexibility, so we can do whatever we want,” the stadium’s Senior Executive Chef, Matt Gibson, told me Monday. The 27-time World Series Champions opened the Audi Yankees Club yesterday to media for a tastings event of the new 2018 food items. “The Yankees have done a lot every year in regards to kind of renovating a bunch of stands. So we really just track the sales, see how the general population feels about things and then we can switch things out.”

Another factor: social media, specifically Instagram. The menu is tied to the campaign #YankeeStadiYUM and Gibson noted how the platforms affect both how the food is served and where it is consumed.

“We want to make sure that they have an offering that’s Instagram worthy as well as a good bang for their buck,” he said. “You should see the camera rolls on our phones. We look at (the food) from every different angle and how we can dress ‘em up so that it looks good on film, on your phone and as well as tastes good.”

Gibson joined the Legends Hospitality staff in the Bronx back in 2010 and save a year, has been there ever since. When the Stadium opened in 2009 the general buzz food-wise revolved around the Lobel’s sandwich, the availability of fresh fruit behind home plate and the sushi in right field. Additions since then have included a Parm Restaurant sandwich stand, foot-long cheese steaks, chicken and waffles, the Toyota Terrace and Frank’s Red Hot Terrace in center field and now a whole plethora of options, from plant-based to decadent and everything in between.

“At the end of the day, we wanted to make sure everyone enjoyed themselves here,” the executive chef said of the decision to include more vegetarian and vegan items. These include black bean taco cups from Brad Holtzman’s Taquitos Especiales (ed. note: Brad was a classmate of mine at Syracuse University) and the aforementioned vegan “meat” options, both served up by New York City-based chain Bareburger. “There’s a vegan sausage over there that’s lights-out. You won’t even miss the meat.”

And he was right. Rounding out the additions to the dining experience: a General Tso’s crispy chicken sandwich, King’s Hawaiian Original Sweet Pineapple BBQ Kalua Pork Nachos and a Lobel’s Meatloaf burger. On the beverage side, Bluepoint Brewing Company is the title sponsor for a new bar in the bleachers and will be serving a Pinstripe Pilsner exclusively at Yankee Stadium. There are also four new “Grand Slam” milkshakes including the “Celebration Shake,” which comes with a sugary-sprinkle-covered rim and a mini-cupcake garnishment.

For me, there still will be nothing sweeter than walking out of Yankee Stadium listening to Sinatra serenade a victory… but that might be a close second.

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When I first started at 95.5 PLJ in October of 2012, I was the new kid on a block of people who mostly had resided in the neighborhood for quite some time. You factor in the heritage of this legendary radio station with moving to a new city with a new job in a new living situation and yes, at times it was overwhelming.

Thankfully, I’m surrounded by a lot of great colleagues and coworkers. Plus, I’m living in the greatest city in the world. So it’s all gravy.

That said, when I was first starting out here, I would find myself asking at least one question every evening: “What’s for dinner?” And usually, there was only one person at the station when I asked it: our Creative Services Director, Dan Kelly, who works a similar schedule to mine.

Nightly, we’d order takeout from Seamless (which I introduced him to five years ago) or one of his other go-to spots. Dan has been at the station for well over 10 years now so naturally, he has a go-to taco and Chinese spot.

But then in the spring of 2014, I started eating much healthier: more salads, cold-pressed juices and a lot of greenery. By that summer, I experimented with veganism, trying it out for a month and a half. It was a life-changing experience; I saw what meat, fish and especially dairy were doing to the appearance of my body, specifically the complexion of my skin.

While I’m not a vegan, I do eat vegan cuisine quite a bit (usually breaking from it on special occasions/holidays and/or the weekend). And for my dinner partner, he is not only the exact opposite of vegan but will usually scoff at the mere notion of trying something classified as such.

Last week, a light-bulb went off: this could make for a perfect Facebook Live experiment.

I hopped on Seamless and ordered from a local vegan fast-food joint, Blossom du Jour. On our “tour de vegan” were three dishes: a “bacon, egg and cheese” sandwich, “mac and cheese” and Buffalo cauliflower.

What did Dan think? Check his reactions below.