Reporting Sara Pelissero
Target Field has certainly started a trend.
Sports stadiums across the Twin Cities are jumping on the new food bandwagon, ready to excite fans with the opportunity to enjoy more than just your typical hot dog. And why shouldn’t they? It gives stadium chefs the freedom to expand their menus and elevate their food while giving fans one more reason to fill the seats.
The latest example came Wednesday at the Target Center, where Chef Wayne Skjelstad previewed the new food offerings awaiting hungry Timberwolves fans this season.
The first item on the list was The Ball Hog — a half-pound kielbasa topped with your choice of sauerkraut, mustard and/or special sauce.
They’re also expanding their BBQ menu with the new Bar-B-Que Burger, a third-pound burger topped with pulled pork, BBQ sauce and crispy onions.
Chef Skjelstad said they’ve seen success already with the BBQ menu.
“This is something that people enjoy anywhere you go in the country and we wanted to offer a variety of options from all across the country, so this is our Midwestern and southern influence,” he said.
Other menu items that have been previous offered include a brisket sandwich and pulled pork sandwich.
“The brisket is cooked long and slow and we put our own secret blend of herbs and spices on there before we cook it,” he said. “That’s going over quite well.”
Even Crunch is getting in the game with his own signature dish. Crunch’s Tater Tot Supreme is a mix between nachos and those lovable tots. It comes topped with your choice of sour cream, nacho cheese and pico de gallo.
The Italian Panini is also new this year and features salami, pepperoni, pesto mayonnaise and mozzarella with a side of marinara sauce.
The final item for 2013 is the steak sandwich, a six-ounce steak topped with grilled onions and provolone cheese, served on a ciabatta bun.
“In general, we want to make sure we give a nice variety to the fans, things that can be made quickly so they don’t have to wait in line too long and we want to raise the quality that you might consider to be standard with stadium fare,” he said. “We’re still going to have hot dogs and brats but we’re bringing it to the next level, also.”
To help guests wash it all down, the new Hoops and Hops stand will offer fans a selection of craft beer, including Grain Belt, Finnegans, Fulton Beer Co., Surly Brewing Co., Lift Bridge Brewing Co., Summit Brewing Co. and Leinenkugel.
Nick Heitmeyer, general manager for Sportservice at Target Field, said they will add variety to that list throughout the season.
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