Ballpark Brews

Ballpark Brews

Heading to the ballpark to watch a major-league game used to mean lowering alcohol standards by compromising your palate for mainstream brewers.

Now many ballparks offer locally brewed microbrews—and glasses of wine too. And in some cases, the beers are exclusive to the parks, like at Citi Field (New York Mets) where you can drink Brooklyn Brewery’s El Sabroso Ale and Blue Smoke Original Ale. Here are some other unique beer and wine experiences at major-league baseball parks.

Located inside the right-field foul pole at Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs), Skybox at Sheffield pours craft beers from Chicago’s Goose Island Microbrewery, such as Cubbie Blue (made with blueberries) and a brew featuring the Skybox label.

Downtown Minneapolis’s brand-new Target Field (Minnesota Twins) pours many beers with state ties, such as Summit, Schells, Finnegans and Grainbelt.

Pair those with regional food favorites such as Vincent burgers (Angus beef stuffed with braised short rib and smoked Gouda cheese) from Vincent-A Restaurant, a contemporary French eatery near the park; or the steak sandwich from nearby Murray’s (sirloin steak and Provolone cheese inside a ciabatta roll).

Twenty local craft beers are available to game-goers at PETCO Park (San Diego Padres) not just inside the restaurants but also at the park’s Wine Steals and Proper Gastropub. Wine Steals chose to open its fourth location earlier this year inside the park, where you can cozy up to a zinc counter and choose from more than 40 wines to sip by the glass, or pick up a bottle after the game for a post-celebration at home.

If you’re a member of the EMC Club, which is a section of premium seating inside Fenway Park (Boston Red Sox), you can sip Cakebread and Opus One wines, as well as Stags’ Leap Chardonnay, Hall Sauvignon Blanc and many other high-end California wines. Similarly, Club 3000 at PNC Park (Pittsburgh Pirates) lets premium-seat ticket holders into the sports bar where 21 taps of imported and craft beers, and high-end wines served in glass stemware, can be ordered. And if you order a six-pack of tickets, you get access to the Beer Passport Club, with pre-game samplings of local craft beers like The Church Brew Works, River Towne Pour House, Vecenie Distributing Company and East End Brewing Company.

Being so close to wine country, naturally both AT&T Park (San Francisco Giants) and Oakland Coliseum (Oakland Athletics) offer premium beers and wines—many from nearby cities. For instance, Public House, the restaurant at AT&T Park headed up by Traci Des Jardins, has 24 beers on draft and about 80 percent of those are local. Brew selections include Firestone Walker, North Coast Brewing Co. and Marin Brewing Co. It opened on April 9, also opening day for the Giants.

At Coors Field in Denver (Colorado Rockies) there’s a microbrewery inside the park. Coors operates The Blue Moon Brewery at The Sandlot, which is located behind the right-field stands on the first level. You can order Blue Moon and various craft beers too.


Published on June 18, 2010
Topics: BallparksBeers