Chicken and waffle cones! Brisket reubens! Garlic crab fries! Let's play ball and eat up!
Your Tampa Bay Rays will debut a menu's-worth of delicious new food options at Tropicana Field this season; which kicks off Sunday with an opening day tilt against the New York Yankees (1 p.m. first pitch).
The boys of summer will also host a series of weekly ticket discounts to save money for families. This includes $2 Kids Tuesdays (kids 14 and under will cost just $2 a ticket for select seats with purchase of an adult ticket) and Senior Special Thursdays (fans 60 and older can get a $15 press level ticket).
In food news, the Rays will open a new Fish Shack in the First Base Food Court (fish sandwiches, fried seafood baskets, garlic crab fries -- yeah, they're pretty darn good). Longer more diverse wine lists and a gaudy Bloody Mary will also be available.
But the splashiest and tastiest additions are homegrown. Green Bench Brewing, the pride of St. Pete, will debut their new 4-Seam American Lager. (FULL DISCLOSURE: I JOURNALISTICALLY TRIED ONE AND IT'S DELICIOUS. AND I'M NOT REALLY A BEER GUY.)
"It's light, it's refreshing, it's easy drinking," says Khris Johnson, head brewer and owner of Green Bench Brewing. "You can have several of them. It goes really well with baseball food."
And Central Avenue stalwarts the Urban Restaurants Group (of Urban Brew and BBQ fame, whose brisket will make you weep) will open the Urban Dugout, a walk-up stand that serves the heavenly (and Instagram-worthy) Chicken and Waffle Cone: fried chicken in an ice-cream-style waffle cone drizzled in syrup -- "and the surprise at the bottom is going to be homemade bacon jam," says Urban mastermind Andy Salyards.
Let's go Rays!