De­li­cious fare at Mile High

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Lori Punko

If your idea of sta­dium food is drippy na­chos, greasy pizza and luke­warm hot dogs, get ready for an up­grade at your next Bron­cos game.

New menu items for Bron­cos Sta­dium at Mile High were re­vealed Fri­day, in­clud­ing dishes from lo­cal chefs and gourmet treats that will have you dou­ble check­ing that you’re ac­tu­ally at a sport­ing event. We’re talk­ing things such as Green Chili Mac ’n’ Cheese in­fused with 505 Green Chile and topped with smoked pork shoul­der.

And that’s just the be­gin­ning as more lo­cal com­pa­nies are be­ing brought into the mix.

“Ev­ery­thing is chang­ing in what we do in sta­di­ums,” Cen­ter­plate ex­ec­u­tive chef Chris De­john said at Fri­day’s me­dia tast­ing.

Denver’s own 505 South­west­ern brand will be the fea­tured salsa, queso dip and tor­tilla chips at the sta­dium. Other lo­cal com­pa­nies on board are City Pop Gourmet Pop­corn and Poli­dori Sausage, which is fea­tured in the new Oven-fired Pizza subs.

Cen­ter­plate has also cre­ated its own Culi­nary Coun­cil of lo­cal celebrity chefs to add to the menu.

The sta­dium will have sev­eral types of hand-tossed ar­ti­san pizza from chef Elise Wig­gins, owner of Sta­ple­ton’s Cat­tivella restau­rant. Wig­gins has been work­ing for sev­eral weeks help­ing the sta­dium staff to per­fect the recipes for ones like the “break­fast” pizza topped with fried egg and ba­con.

“We’ve gone through 100 pounds of pizza to get it right,” De­john said.

No need to worry if you’re a fan of the tra­di­tional huge slices served at the sta­dium; Cen­ter­plate gen­eral man­ager Justin Kiz­ima says those will still be avail­able.

The other lo­cal chefs par­tic­i­pat­ing are Lon Sy­mensma of the Cholon Restau­rant Con­cepts group and Troy Guard of the TAG Restau­rant Group. Sy­mensma’s dishes in­clude a Saigon Bowl with Rice Noo­dles and a Red Curry Rice Bowl, while Guard has cre­ated a dish of lo­cally sourced ground beef slid­ers served with duck fat fries.

It may sound like these dishes would go only to the lucky folks in the club seats or suites, but De­john con­firmed that the se­lec­tions will be avail­able through­out the sta­dium at lim­ited lo­ca­tions.

And the menu op­tions won’t break your wal­let, ei­ther. Prices for the new items range from $8 for the BBQ Thun­der Dog to $12 to $15 for the noo­dle and rice bowls made with fresh veg­eta­bles.

On the sub­ject of veg­eta­bles, Cen­ter­plate has a num­ber of health­ier op­tions in­clud­ing a se­lec­tion of sal­ads, veg­etable trays and a gluten-free Turkey Hoagie.

New this year is the Su­per­bowl, a veg­e­tar­ian, non-gmo, or­ganic bowl of acai smoothie topped with a se­lec­tion of dress­ings, fruits and nuts — and even gluten­free gra­nola. “We’ve seen our guests change a lot with what they want,” De­john said of the health­ier op­tions.

The Bron­cos have also made an ef­fort to sat­isfy fans in other ways. Jay Roberts, sta­dium gen­eral man­ager, said the sta­dium is bring­ing back the $5 12-ounce reg­u­lar beer in re­sponse to fan de­mand. They have also added bike racks on the east side of the sta­dium, ad­di­tional phone-charg­ing sta­tions in­side and out­side the venue and com­pleted the up­grade to the sta­dium Wi-fi.

You can also “print” an image in the foam on your beer with An­heuser-busch’s “Rip­ple” tech­nol­ogy. The ma­chines, cur­rently avail­able only in the Bud Light Cham­pi­ons Club, use a malt-based ex­tract to im­print an image such as a Bron­cos logo on the foam on your beer.

Pho­tos by Sha­ban Athu­man, The Denver Post

Cen­ter­plate ex­ec­u­tive chef Chris De­john talks Fri­day about the new dishes of­fered to fans this sea­son at Bron­cos Sta­dium at Mile High.

REUBEN SAND­WICH: A twist on the clas­sic sand­wich with hot corned beef on mar­ble rye with Thou­sand Is­land dress­ing and sauerkraut.

BBQ THUN­DER DOG: The Thun­der Dog is a foot-long hot dog with chopped brisket, triple hot cheese sauce, fried onions and a driz­zling of BBQ sauce.

Ital­ian meat­balls OVEN-FIRED PIZZA SUBS: or sausage, toasted on a hoagie bun, topped with mari­nara, pep­per­oni and sliced moz­zarella cheese.

GREEN CHILI MAC ’N’ CHEESE: White ched­dar mac ’n’ cheese, in­fused with spicy 505 Green Chile and topped with smoked pork and fried and green onions.

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