May 27, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Take Me Out to the Ballgame

'A hot dog just doesn’t taste the same unless there’s a baseball game in front of it'

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Baseball doesn’t use a clock.  Regardless of how long a game lasts, the odds are you are only going to enjoy one meal at the Ballpark. So make it a good one!  At Isotopes Park in Albuquerque the choices for that meal are so varied , it would be a shame for you or your family to go away disappointed.  Here’s a handy guide to everything Isotopes Park offers in the way  of food and beverages.

THE WEINER:
The old saying goes “A hot dog just doesn’t taste the same unless there’s a baseball game in front of it”.  While the basic dog at Isotopes Park is just that: basic…there are plenty of ways to make it something special.   The basic dog ($4.25, $6.75 in a basket with fries) will not bring back memories of a Dodger Dog, named after the Isotopes’ parent club so opt instead for a Hebrew National kosher dog or sausage on a bun (both available at stand alone stands and both healthier options, relatively speaking).  The Pecos River Café offers a Green Chili Dog ($6.25), or the Lasorda Dog, 2 franks on a tortilla with green chili and sour cream ($9.00).  It’s a bargain if you’d normally buy two dogs and I’m sure Tommy Lasorda, a Dodger icon and former Albuquerque Dukes manager, would be proud.  Where once a healthier Asian Noodles stand once stood down the right field line, foot long corn dogs are now offered  instead at $6 (along with Frito pies at $5.00).  Add all the free fixin’s (onions, pickle relish, catsup and mustard) to dress up any dog.

THE BURGER:
Not quite as many varieties to choose from as the exalted hot dog but you’ll find a basic cheeseburger throughout the park with a generously large meat patty ($7.00, $9.00 with fries) or head to Batters Up for the fancier Bacon Burger ($10) or a Tortilla Burger ($9.50). 

VEGETARIAN OPTIONS:
The Pecos River Café’s veggie dog is a suitable substitute for the real thing (and a bargain at $4.50) or choose a bean burrito there for $4.50 (with meat: $7.50).  If you’ll eat fowl while chasing down foul balls, a chicken sandwich ($9) or chicken tenders ($8) can be had.   Dion’s Pizza  serves up a Greek salad ($5) and fruit cups. You can also find  gluten-free sanchwich ($10) and salad ($7.50) options.  Exploring the Club Level upstairs, I also found  a rather sparse fruit tray (a variety of melons , $5) and a veggie tray (carrots, veggies and dipping sauce, $4.50)

OTHER GOODIES:
Besides pizza, Dion’s also offers up a reasonably priced chef salad ($5), and turkey or roast beef submarine sandwiches ($6.50).  The Pecos River Café serves Indian taco nachos ($7.50) or head to Sadie’s Restaurant stand.  Their delicious, loaded nachos are $8 or get chips and queso ($7), chips and guacamole ($7) or chips and salsa ($4).  That beats the chips and fake cheese dip served elsewhere. Big fat pretzels (with mustard) are a popular choice. Although Atomic Margaritas listed chicken wings on their menu for $9 they’re no longer available.  The Philly Cheesesteak stand  has also been unmanned on my first two visits to the stadium this year but refreshment stands offering pulled pork sandwiches ($7.50) and BBQ nachos ($7.75) were staffed and operational.

If you have Club Level seats there are a few bonuses for you and your guests:  a roast beef carving station  that will build you a sandwich for $10 and delicious dessert choices for $6.50:  Bananas Foster or Cherries Jubilee (also available at a  free-standing stand downstairs.

DESSERTS:
As you would imagine sweets are plentiful at the ballpark.  Candy will set you back $3, about half of  what movie theaters are charging these days.  The popular “Dippin’ Dots” in four flavors (just when the heck IS “the future of ice cream” going to arrive??) can be purchased for $5 or in a souvenir helmet cup for $6.  Sno Cones come in 7 flavors for $5.  Buy a brownie at Dion’s, a churro ($3) at Pecos River Café or cotton candy ($6, also available from roving vendors).  While funnel cake the size of a medium pizza is a whole lot of dough and powdered sugar for $6 opt instead for the funnel cake fries ($4.50) at The Sweet Spot.  They’re less messy, and less fattening…they’re really just funnel cake shaped like French fries .  The Sweet Spot also features milkshakes ($6), brownie sundaes ($6.50), root beer floats ($4.25), giant cookies ($3.75) and the decidedly not sweet chili covered French fries ($6).

BEVERAGES:
Beer starts at $7.50 a giant cup, just watch your consumption if you are driving to the game.  Fruit daiquiris , Atomic margaritas and all types of soda ($4 to $6) are also available.
Well, now you (or your kids) have no reason to complain there’s nothing to eat at the old ballpark.  As you can see there is plenty to choose from and in all price ranges, whether you prefer a  somewhat more exotic meal or just something sweet to munch on.  Oh yes,  if you remain a traditionalist: peanuts and Cracker Jacks will set you back a total of $7.75.  Enjoy the game!

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