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One of the many things that make the baseball experience
much better today than 20 years ago is the food.
I still get a hot dog at almost every game I go to. I guess
it’s a matter of making sure that I’m doing my part to ensure that hot dogs are
always available at ballgames, and protecting a tradition in a sport whose
charm lies in its history.
But of late I’ve been much more eager to try the local
offerings at a ballpark, whether it is the Tony Luke’s cheesesteak at Citizens
Bank Park in Philly, the Ben’s All-The-Way Chili Dog at Nationals Park in Washington,
or the Shackburger at Citi Field in New York. As I detail in Ballpark E-Guides,
there are many, many food choices at nearly all ballparks these days, and many
of them have that signature item that reflects the local flavor.
Well at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, that item happens to be a
Primanti Bros. sandwich. I have yet to have one at the park itself, but I have
tried it in one of their restaurants. A Primanti Bros. meal includes the
sandwich on Italian white bread with fresh-cut fries and coleslaw. Nothing
unusual, until you see that the fries and cole slaw are actually piled onto the
sandwich! Hey, it all ends up in the same place, right?
The legend I originally heard was that truckers would
frequent the restaurant but often did not have time to eat the fries and slaw
with their sandwich, so they were all packed together. Well, that’s not quite
right, as the Primanti Bros. website describes here.
Still, a popular and unusual food item in a city is always
worth checking out, and if it’s available in a gorgeous ballpark, hey, triple
I have read opinions of people that suggest getting your
Primanti Bros. sandwich elsewhere at any of the many locations in greater
Pittsburgh, since it’s less expensive, the portions are slightly bigger, and
reportedly it’s just a higher quality sandwich elsewhere. But if you want to spare yourself the trouble
of finding another place and make a Primanti Bros. sandwich your meal of choice
at the ballpark, it’s perfectly adequate.
And if you spend some time sitting with a Primanti and an
Iron City beer (more on that in a future post) at beautiful PNC Park, this
Pittsburgh place will really grow on you.