The trend of ballparks providing quality food options from local restaurants hasn't hit Louisville yet. But with Against the Grain Brewery at least co-locating at Louisville Slugger Field, it's getting close. Still, the ballpark has plenty of dining options that should help you eat and drink your way through a three-hour game. In honor of the opening day of the 2013 Major League Baseball season (the Bats home opener is Thursday, April 4), here's a guide to what and where to eat at Louisville Slugger Field.
Best Bet: Against the Grain
Official Slugger Field food vendor Centerplate's rules prevent outside grub from being brought into the ballpark—even if the restaurant cohabits at Slugger Field. So while you're watching the Bats, having this craft brewery and smokehouse at the stadium is like a team that can't carry a lead into the ninth having an ace reliever in the pen. Pro tip: Eat and drink here before forking over your ticket, drink just enough at the game to maintain a buzz, and eat and drink here afterwards. Or, break out your Derby smuggling skills, stuff a growler down your shirt, Berkshire Schnitzel down your trousers and head to your seats (what do you think Buddy Bat has hidden in his costume?).
Other food options
Centerplate was formerly known as Volume Services America, Inc.—not a name that implies fresh and local. That being said, with more than 50 types of food available throughout the park, Slugger Field has plenty of decent concession options.
·Double stacked fried bologna sandwiches, one of Louisville's nine most iconic sandwiches, are sold at the portable grill near section 114 and the concourse's first base grill at section 110.
·The self-proclaimed famous pork chop sandwich is available on the outfield beam.
·The sandwich station behind home plate carries healthier (or at least non-fried) options like paninis, wraps and subs.
·During weekend games Chef Jim's Corner behind third base features the chef's specials. Last year those dishes included salmon burgers, crab cakes and fish tacos.
·At the Mexican cart on the third base line near home plate (section 119), you can top your nachos supreme with taco meat, BBQ or other options. Also, there are burritos.
A minor league baseball game without beer is like a little league game without a flask.
·The concession stand behind home plate (section 115) has the best variety in the ballpark (Heineken! Stella! Red Stripe!).
·Other drafts are available on the outfield berm with bottled beers for sale near sections 109 and 118 (the former has more options).
·The Diamond Drinks bar (section 118) and Jack Daniels Bar (on the second level) also carry The Bat Brew, made by Budweiser.
And because minor league teams know they need to provide more than just baseball to get you to the game (even though you probably got that ticket for free):
·Every Thursday features a $1 Budweiser and Bud Light Happy Hour from 5:30-7 p.m.
·Louisville Bats introduce Riggleman as new skipper [Business First]
·Where to Eat at Louisville International Airport (SDF) [~ELOU~]
·Finally! Red Sox win World Series [USA Today]
[Photo: Courtesy Louisville Bats]