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I agree that Flippin is a chain from outside the DC area, but I think there IS a huge quality difference between them and Papa John's.

But again, I'm conparing the retail stores in MoCo, not the ballpark stands. I've not had Flippin in the park, but the PJ's goes from bad (retail) to inedible (RFK) IMO.

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I agree that Flippin is a chain from outside the DC area, but I think there IS a huge quality difference between them and Papa John's.

But again, I'm conparing the retail stores in MoCo, not the ballpark stands. I've not had Flippin in the park, but the PJ's goes from bad (retail) to inedible (RFK) IMO.

I know! You just said all this above.

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I agree that Flippin is a chain from outside the DC area, but I think there IS a huge quality difference between them and Papa John's.

But again, I'm conparing the retail stores in MoCo, not the ballpark stands. I've not had Flippin in the park, but the PJ's goes from bad (retail) to inedible (RFK) IMO.

I can't speak to the quality in the park this year, because I rarely eat pizza at a game, but the couple of times I had Flippin' at the park, it was truly awful. They had no concept of how to take the process from the store and translate it to the ballpark.

For that reason, I would assume Papa John's would end up being better. Even if you don't like their product as much (I think it's fine for what it is), they have more experience in getting their product served in a mass setting like a ballpark.

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They must have changed vendors; there was a "Hatfield" logo on the sign at the Senators Sausages stand I patronized last night. The sausage was also slightly smaller than I remember it from last time (shorter than the bun).

Hatfield and Nick's Sausage are both brands under the same company, so unless the Nats dropping Kayem for Hatfield for their hot dog contract (which I doubt), it's probably the same brand of sausage, with different branding made more prominent.

That's what I'd hope, at least - Nick's is the "premium" sausage option in the Clemens line, so to switch off Nick's to Hatfield would be fairly counterintuitive.

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Mr. lperry gives two thumbs up to the jerk chicken. We were there early (bobblehead day) and he got a plate just as they pulled it off the grill. He was making happy noises for the next twenty minutes or so.

Oh, good! I will get that next time. I forewent the trek to the taqueria this time and regretted it -- stood in line for sausage only to find that they were out of everything but jalapeno sausage, then went to Hard Times where they got my order wrong, I forgot some things, they gave me giant drinks when I didn't request them (and the exceptionally helpful cashier suggested I could go back and ask for the smaller size instead - I was juggling too much and got flustered and didn't think of it - then she helped me carry my stuff, thank you miss!). They used to have some standing tables that you could eat at, not far from Hard Times, but now they're all gone, and I found that chili was tricky to eat down in our seats (i.e. I dropped everything but the chili -- at least the cornbread and water didn't make a big mess like the chili would have). I think I'll stick to the tacos (easier to carry b/c it all fit in the tray better, and they sold bottles of drinks which were easier to carry), and/or try the jerk chicken.

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Shake Shack was fantastic at the exhibition game before the season started. The wait wasn't unbearable, maybe 15-20 minutes.

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Shake Shack was fantastic at the exhibition game before the season started. The wait wasn't unbearable, maybe 15-20 minutes.

How is missing an entire inning of a 9-inning game not unbearable?

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How is missing an entire inning of a 9-inning game not unbearable?

Most don't care about the game. From games that I have attended, there are a large number of folks that don't mind missing an inning or two to get food, beer, or whatever they are doing as they move in and out of the row.

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How is missing an entire inning of a 9-inning game not unbearable?

I think Steve and I left the stadium after the 6th inning on Friday night, after we've pigged out and had several beers. On our way out, the Braves hit their first homer. They would subsequently tie the game and win it in extra innings. It's too early in the season to care about the game. If I really want to watch the game, I'd watch it on TV. I never did see the replay of the Braves at bat that was ruled a double (ground rule double).....if I cared, I would've been pissed (I'm a Braves fan).

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I think Steve and I left the stadium after the 6th inning on Friday night, after we've pigged out and had several beers. On our way out, the Braves hit their first homer. They would subsequently tie the game and win it in extra innings. It's too early in the season to care about the game. If I really want to watch the game, I'd watch it on TV. I never did see the replay of the Braves at bat that was ruled a double (ground rule double).....if I cared, I would've been pissed (I'm a Braves fan).

Wins count the same early in the season as they do late in the season.

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Wow, a couple of true baseball fans in here! Haha. Also, what about 15-20 minutes equated to missing the entire game? I'm also not a "Nat's fan" and I had never been to any Shake Shack before.

Get there early, get some Shake Shack and you'll be satisfied for the rest of the game.

*** "Nat's fans" (noun) natz fan: Being of the type that bought a National's hat in August 2012 and cheered until they fell apart in the playoffs.

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Wins count the same early in the season as they do late in the season.

Mathematically but not emotionally. When the Braves lost the play-in game last year (to the Cards), I'm pretty sure most people didn't moan about an earlier loss in the season. Instead, I remember Chipper booting a grounder that contributed to his own early retirement.

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Our favorite at the park is Max's without much of a contest though, at a recent game (I think White Sox), the wings at Hard Times were respectable. The hot dogs at Max's are better. They have kraut. The shwarmas are fresh and well made.

As for fan worthiness, wait for them to fall below .500 and then see what happens with attendance and ticket pricing on the secondary markets. Hopefully won't happen but, current course and speed...

Oh well, it can't ever get back to what it was in 2006-2010. Fun fact: excepting only 2005 when the Nationals first played in DC, and even including last year's successful 2012 season, National's total attendance has always been below the NL average. Maybe that's why we don't get better food options.

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Our favorite at the park is Max's

Will have to try that. We've had a 20 game package since 2005 and so have gotten very tired of all the options. And the prices.

We take food a lot. When I worked at AU, Vace was on the way to the park. We often had subs for dinner at the game. Wish I could still do that! Now it's random sandwiches from other places. For Sunday games we go to breakfast before we go. We also bring water, pistachios, and peanuts. Sometimes I make caramel corn too. Still have to buy beer and ice cream there though.

One of our group really likes the nachos from Hard Times. They are ok IMO, but get soggy too quickly.

I wish that fried dough and sugar waffles were available.

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I have to say that the beer selection at Shake Shack was deplorable. Miller Light or Killians. I can't stress this enough that KILLIANS WAS LABELLED A PREMIUM BEER. P R E M I U M !!!

Is there any craft beer in the park? Even a decent pale ale would suffice. I would even drink Sierra Nevada.

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Is there any craft beer in the park? Even a decent pale ale would suffice. I would even drink Sierra Nevada.

Yes. Here's the craft beer status:

http://www.dcbeer.com/news/home-run-double-strikeout-craft-beer-guide-nationals-stadium

In the stadium your best bet for craft beer is the Red Porch restaurant in center field (Section 100), conveniently located for the majority of fans who enter through the center field gates. IPAs currently dominate the taps, which include Dogfish Head’s 60 Minute IPA, as well as Flying Dog Snake Dog. Flying Dog's Under Dog, a hoppy lager, is also on tap, as is Dogfish's Indian Brown Ale. If hops aren't your thing, Starr Hill's German-style lager, Jomo, is there as well. The Nationals have contracted with Premium Distributors of Washington, DC, so look for Ommegang and Heavy Seas, among others, in this space during the season. You do not need a ticket for this area to enter the Red Porch. Walk in, buy your beer, and walk out...

And what I added to the post:

There's also the Sam Adams bar behind section 111 on the third base side. They had Boston Lager and Summer Ale on tap as of Friday afternoon - and Angry Orchard cider. They'll probably keep those three all season. Last year they had another seasonal tap with Tasmin Red for a couple months - smaller pour and more expensive. Nothing too exciting but the kegs are fresh and the ladies who serve there are super nice.

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I wish that fried dough and sugar waffles were available.

There's a fried dough stand on the upper concourse, around 310 if I recall. It was doing brisk business last weekend.

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There's a fried dough stand on the upper concourse, around 310 if I recall. It was doing brisk business last weekend.

Really? A portable one or a permanent one?

Our seats are in 308. I was there last Sunday. I did not see this. I have never seen this. I need to see (and try) this. I shall be looking for it, and will take any hints on what it is called.

ETA: You don't mean the funnel cake folks, do you? I like some funnel cake, but that is not fried dough. Also, they are not very good funnel cakes, IMO. I am wishing for the fried dough that is yeast dough, stretched out, deep fried, and served with cinnamon and sugar. And while I'm at it, in case someone knows where I can get sugar waffles (without making them myself), this is what I mean by sugar waffle.

Edited by saf

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Yes. Here's the craft beer status:

http://www.dcbeer.com/news/home-run-double-strikeout-craft-beer-guide-nationals-stadium

And what I added to the post:

Quote

There's also the Sam Adams bar behind section 111 on the third base side. They had Boston Lager and Summer Ale on tap as of Friday afternoon - and Angry Orchard cider. They'll probably keep those three all season. Last year they had another seasonal tap with Tasmin Red for a couple months - smaller pour and more expensive. Nothing too exciting but the kegs are fresh and the ladies who serve there are super nice.

Those super nice ladies offer me a smile and a Summer Ale as my first stop after fighting traffic to the ballpark more than 70 times a season. Last season they switched from Summer Ale to Octoberfest in September. The stand is oriented to people walking from third base side so casual folks walking in from Center Field gates walk right past.

Between innings I can make it to the Baseline Brews near Section 136 and purchase a draft Sierra Nevada and be back to my seat without missing any game action. The lady who serves on the far right is the quickest.

I do wish that Nationals Park had the sort of local "craft" beer selection that Oriole Park has. Oriole Park has a Heavy Seas stand in the 300 section on the third base side that has four rotating taps. The Red Porch is a hike from my seat and is often crowded before games.

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Really? A portable one or a permanent one?

Our seats are in 308. I was there last Sunday. I did not see this. I have never seen this. I need to see (and try) this. I shall be looking for it, and will take any hints on what it is called.

ETA: You don't mean the funnel cake folks, do you? I like some funnel cake, but that is not fried dough. Also, they are not very good funnel cakes, IMO. I am wishing for the fried dough that is yeast dough, stretched out, deep fried, and served with cinnamon and sugar. And while I'm at it, in case someone knows where I can get sugar waffles (without making them myself), this is what I mean by sugar waffle.

Oh, it's the funnel cake place. Funnel cake = fried dough to me. I'm not enough of an expert to recognize the difference :)

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I do wish that Nationals Park had the sort of local "craft" beer selection that Oriole Park has. Oriole Park has a Heavy Seas stand in the 300 section on the third base side that has four rotating taps. The Red Porch is a hike from my seat and is often crowded before games.

The Red Porch has had Heavy Seas selections in the past; I would not be surprised to see them pop up somewhere else in the stadium based on the dcbeer post.

The reason for lack of local beers is because none of them are part of the Premium Distributors portfolio.

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Oh, it's the funnel cake place.

Oh well. Thank you for trying!

(For good ballpark funnel cakes, go see the Potomac Nationals in Woodbridge,)

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Perhaps I should have consulted the concession map before I bought our tickets for Wed. I will have to navigate the little guy past cotton candy, gelato and dipping dots.

I'm not going to stress about missing part of or even a whole inning for an outing to Shake Shack or Blue Smoke. We had season tickets in 05 and partial package in 06. As much as I love baseball (and there were bobbleheads of Fredbird and Mr. Met at my wedding...), I don't want to be so invested in the game that we miss the experience. We'll record it so we can watch the highlights later.

Go Cards!

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Perhaps I should have consulted the concession map before I bought our tickets for Wed. I will have to navigate the little guy past cotton candy, gelato and dipping dots.

I'm not going to stress about missing part of or even a whole inning for an outing to Shake Shack or Blue Smoke. We had season tickets in 05 and partial package in 06. As much as I love baseball (and there were bobbleheads of Fredbird and Mr. Met at my wedding...), I don't want to be so invested in the game that we miss the experience. We'll record it so we can watch the highlights later.

Go Cards!

Well, when I was a "little guy" the "experience" was the actual game, at RFK Stadium, nee (can not figure out how to get the accent aigu) DC Stadium (not quite old enough to claim to have been at Griffith Stadium). We would maybe get a hot dog, or peanuts, or, heaven forbid, something resembling fresh-spun cotton candy, from the vendors that would come down the aisles. Your desire to stand in a line at Shake Shack or whereever while missing potentially significant action, along with 25,000 others like you (and, believe it or not, this is not a personal attack on you) makes me wonder if this will ever (or ever again) be a real baseball town. I guess I am officially an old curmudgeon for raising this issue. At least you are a Cards' fan, which gives me hope for Nats' fans everywhere. I also guess that I am very thankful that my college-aged son appreciates the game like I do, and is not in it for the "experience" that you infer. I realize, of course, that he may have to veer in that direction if he is ever to get a real date. Oh, the irony...(Don, non-food rant, please delete if you find in inappropriate.)

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