Minnesota’s culinary luminaries from restaurants Spoon and Stable and Revival will join Andrew Zimmern and Aramark in creating food for the new U.S. Bank Stadium.
The slogan for the food options at the stadium is “modern, memorable and Minnesota.”
Food and football belong together, Zimmern said, adding that Super Bowl Sunday — not Thanksgiving — is the biggest food day in the United States. He announced his new professional partnership with Gavin Kaysen, the owner-chef at Spoon and Stable, that will extend to sports venues throughout the country. Zimmern is also an investor in Kaysen’s restaurant, one of the toughest reservations in town.
He said the duo, which is going to take the partnership to other venues throughout the country, wants to create, “really good football food. We’re not doing sushi. We’re not doing coq au vin.”
Ike’s Food & Cocktails, a downtown Minneapolis spot, also will be there selling its “signature” Bloody Mary and “handcrafted steak sandwich” in the new $1.1 billion building.
Carl Mittleman, president of Aramark’s sports and entertainment division, said Tuesday’s announcement is the first of several regarding local food partners.
The new stadium will provide a “world-class food and beverage experience,” Mittleman said, adding, “I assure you that fans and guests are going to be in for a great treat.”
Zimmern, a cable TV food celebrity and award-winning chef based in the Twin Cities, already has stadium experience both here and elsewhere in the country. He created the popular AZ Canteen at Target Field, home of a notable Korean fried chicken sandwich and tasty nonalcoholic drinks.
He’ll open a Canteen outpost at U.S. Bank as well as AZC Hoagies with Kaysen from which they will “recalibrate the way people enjoy the Italian sandwich,” Zimmern said.
Among the offerings: Italian meatball, sausage, beef and roast pork sandwiches as well as bomboloni, or Italian doughnuts.
As they develop their items, Kaysen said they ask themselves: “Is it accessible? Is it who we are together and is it delicious?”
The restaurateurs also must consider how they deliver the food, aka the “vessel.” For example, Zimmern said a juicy hoagie is no good if ends up spilled all over a fan’s lap.
The two brought out a hoagie several feet long to demonstrate their concept. Inside: Italian roast pork, aged provolone, charred broccoli and chile aioli.
Most of the actual food items — and their prices — have not been determined, but operators stressed that the entire variety of food options will be available for all fans from the highest seats to the lowest, which are almost on the field.
Revival’s co-owners Thomas Boemer and Nick Rancone will bring their celebrated fried chicken to the new stadium.
The two served samples of what they will sell: fried chicken sandwiches (both mild and fiery versions) on warm, buttery buns. They will also sell their homemade pork rinds with spicy cheese. “Better than Cheetos,” Boemer said.
In his initial discussions with Aramark about Revival’s involvement, Rancone said his main concern was that the stadium food match the restaurant’s for quality. Rancone said Aramark assured him of that and the rest has been easy.
In addition to hoagies, Zimmern said he will have a “whole animal” spot called AZC Rotisserie, selling rotisserie beef, pork, goat and lamb.
The full array of stadium offerings will be rolled out in coming weeks.
The building will open Aug. 3 with a soccer match.