On-Deck at Busch Stadium: Expanded Dining Options and New Merchandise

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Sportservice Debuts Farmers’ Market-Style Concessions, Gluten-Free Options, Food Network Menus

After a long winter, Cardinals’ fans are eager for sunshine, spring air, and most importantly – baseball season! To get ready for Opening Day, Delaware North Companies Sportservice, the St. Louis Cardinals’ concessionaire partner for more than 50 years, is introducing expanded menus and shopping options based on fan demand.

Fans will find more healthy and fresh offerings that are made-to-order, as well as grab-and-go and gluten-free options. Meanwhile, fans who shop at the Official Cardinals Team Store will find gear to support a variety of pastimes, including camping, cooking and scrapbooking.

Food Inspired by Fan Demand:
For fans looking to grab a quick snack, Sportservice has added Busch Stadium’s first Farmers’ Market-style stand. Located near Gate 1 in Section 137, offerings at this stand were developed specifically with gluten-free dietary needs in mind, including garden and chef salads, yogurt and fruit. The stand also features fresh turkey and Italian sub sandwiches, veggie wraps and a variety of beverages, including regular and gluten-free Redbridge beer, water and soda.

“Sportservice has the benefit of serving at 10 ballparks nationwide, and we’ve learned from our colleagues that offering gluten-free options is a growing need for more fans,” said Sportservice Chef Norman Taylor, Jr. “We made it a priority to develop menu items that naturally tasted delicious without relying on gluten. Fans will find more offerings that aren’t breaded or sandwiched by bread, but will instead see more fruit, salads and other options.”

Gate 1 continues to be the prime destination for fans who desire the most variety in one action-packed space. Over the last several years, fans have raved about the pulled pork, smoked in-house by Sportservice chefs daily. Each offering here can be piled high with fan favorite toppings. New in 2011 are the Pig Skins (pulled pork potato skins), which can be topped with fresh tomatoes, jalapeños, sour cream and more. St. Louis fans prefer nachos over anything else at the ballpark, and at the Build Your Own Nachos stand, fans can create their own signature topping with pulled pork, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, jalapeños, green onions, pico de gallo and three types of hot sauce to satisfy mild or spicy cravings.

Sportservice will also debut the new Food Network portable cart in Section 144. This cart originated at the New Meadowlands Stadium and was a hit with New York Jets and Giants fans. Now available at Busch Stadium, a choice of two steak sandwiches will be served: the Food Network Signature Red, White and Blue Steak Sandwich and the St. Louis Food Network Sandwich. The Red, White and Blue Steak Sandwich is topped with blue cheese and a sweet and spicy pepper mayonnaise, while the St. Louis Steak Sandwich includes St. Louis-style barbecue sauce and cheddar cheese.

Sportservice is again offering deals to help fans stretch their dollars. At the Family Pavilion in Section 507, fans can purchase a kids’ meal with a hot dog, chips, cookie and juice or milk for $8.75. Sportservice and the Cardinals are also expanding the Grand Slam Ticket Pack to include most Sunday through Thursday home games (originally only available on Sundays). The Grand Slam Ticket Pack includes four terrace level seats, four Hunter hot dogs and four Coca-Cola soft drinks for $60 dollars.

Redbird Club Renovation:
For an upgraded fan experience in an air-conditioned, living-room-style area, the Redbird Club has been renovated to include new digital menu boards, increased seating for dining and watching the game indoors on numerous TV banks, and a refreshed gourmet menu.

As an innovative new twist on ballpark fare, Sportservice is adding Artisan Salads. Located near the escalator, chefs will be standing by to hand-toss salads custom-built by the fans. Guests will pick from a base of crisp romaine, spring mix or spinach, select toppings including carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, turkey and ham, and finish with one of six fresh dressings. Signature made-to-order classics will also be on the menu, including chicken Caesar, Athenian, cobb and chef salads. Steps away, guests will find hot and bubbly New York-Style Pizza by the Slice, cooked on-site in a hearth oven with toppings such as spinach, artichoke, cheese, pepperoni and sausage.

Redbird Club guests will be able to pick from the most popular concourse favorites, including Build Your Own Nachos and the Barbecue Bacon Dog, which will be located near the dessert stand. Of course, the Redbird Club will continue serving the always awe-inspiring homemade cupcakes: Cardinal pride, mint condition, cherry bomb, confetti, peanut butter cup, carrot cake, and for a limited time, s’mores and margarita with a Key lime cream cheese frosting.

Fans enjoying the game from the suites can select from a new menu developed in collaboration with the Food Network. Sportservice’s exclusive partnership with the culinary pioneer, a first in baseball history, will provide fans with the choice of several menu options, such as buffalo chicken mac ‘n’ cheese, crunchy Asian shrimp lettuce cups and a slow roasted drunken pork sandwich with celery root slaw.

Exclusive Retail For All Fans:
From tents and outdoor gear to scrapbooking materials and fashion-forward apparel, Sportservice allows Cardinals’ fans to show their team spirit in everything they do.

“Each year, we evaluate the most popular requests from the previous year and collaborate with our vendors to develop never-before-seen Cardinals’ merchandise,” said Megan Curts, Sportservice Retail Manager. “The result is the most exclusive and widest selection of Cardinals’ merchandise in St. Louis. We’re getting new items in daily, so we encourage fans to visit us and experience Cardinal Heaven as they get ready for the season.”

The Official Cardinals Team Store:
St. Louisans love barbecuing, and this year, enthusiasts will find a selection of Cardinals-inspired outdoor gear, including Coleman coolers (coming soon), tailgating tents, grill and gas tank covers and fold up bag chairs (in toddler, standard and extra-large sizes). Fans can complete the barbecue experience with cooking equipment that sears the Cardinals’ logo directly into the food, including the new panini press, hot dog or hamburger press (coming soon), and the ProToast toaster. Meanwhile, a 4-foot St. Louis Cardinals’ yard stencil, which can be used several times, allows fans to recreate the Busch Stadium turf on their front lawns. Other favorites include stepping stones, garden signs and forest faces.

Dressing for Opening Day has never been easier as Sportservice is expanding its range of colors, sizes and looks. Last year, fans requested more options for girls, and this year, the team store features more frill, pink and sparkle. For young soccer stars, new Adidas-style shorts, V-neck shirts, and pant-and-jacket sets will outfit the athlete in the household.

For women, on-field jackets have been added to round out cold-weather apparel, while men can show their Cardinals spirit from head to toe in retro style apparel, the new on-field jacket and button-down Majestic jersey (the same jersey worn during Cardinal batting practice). The team store will also offer the official 2011 Opening Day T-shirt, baseball and lapel pins.

Back by overwhelming demand are dozens of $12 and under souvenirs, including the pin of the month, mini-bats, koozies, magnets, baseball cards, jewelry, posters, postcards, foam fingers, foam claws, key chains, lanyards, pennants, player plaques and sunglasses. New for 2011, Sportservice is offering Disney character pins. In addition, fans who want more than a souvenir can build the ultimate album with Cardinals-themed scrapbooking supplies, scrapbooks, frames, stickers and more.

Sportservice has also transformed the Level 4 walk-in store (section 437) from a counter-only store into a more robust retail destination, allowing fans to get closer to the merchandise.

About Delaware North Companies Sportservice
Delaware North Companies Sportservice is one of the nation’s leading food, beverage and retail management companies, providing concessions, gourmet catering and fine dining operations at more than 50 professional sporting venues, entertainment complexes and convention centers across the United States and Canada. Sportservice is the provider of choice for an impressive client roster, including the World Series, the National Hockey League and Major League Baseball’s All-Star games, the Stanley Cup Championships and the Olympic Games.

Throughout its 90-year history, Sportservice has demonstrated that it knows what it takes to effectively develop, operate and manage multi-faceted kitchens, restaurants, suites with fine dining, and retail facilities in order to meet the changing demands of today’s fans. From introducing healthier food selections and creative cuisine to twists on traditional fare and new organic options, Sportservice continues to innovate and enhance the fan experience

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Dana Purkey
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