5 Great American Ball Park Food Items | Cincinnati Reds
Posted by Kurt Smith
The Great American Ball Park food menu isn’t overly complicated. The Reds don’t have the ridiculous amount of options that, say, the Mets do. I didn’t see a sushi or lobster roll stand there. But there is a decent variety, and you should be able to find something that fits your taste, especially if you’re an American and like hot dogs at the game.
There’s also several stands that celebrate the local chains, and each one has something that makes for great ballpark food.
Great American Ball Park Food Tip #1: The Skyline Chili Cheese Coney. If there’s a go-to item at Great American, at least judging by the number of them I saw being purchased, it’s probably the Skyline cheese and chili dog.
Skyline chili is a very popular chain that can be found all over Cincinnati, known for the local style of chili—which is probably different from the way most people outside of Cincinnati know it, with both cocoa and cinnamon as ingredients(!). There are several Skyline stands at Great American.
The Skyline Chili Cheese Coney is a small hot dog with a generous amount of Cincinnati-style chili and a nice helping of shredded cheddar piled on top. They’re not very long, only about four inches or so…and they’re economically priced so most people get two of them.
Definitely get a fork and some napkins for this one, but it’s good eats.
Great American Ball Park Food Tip #2: Fry Box Buffalo Chicken Fries. The Fry Box stand at Great American ranks near the top of fry stands I’ve seen at ballparks, and remember I live in the home of Chickie’s and Pete’s in Philly.
Put Buffalo-style chicken on cheesecake and it would probably taste good. But put it on hand cut fried potatoes…which is pretty much nature’s perfect food…and add a generous helping of ranch dressing and blue cheese, and you’ve got a classic why-have-I-been-settling-so-much-in-my-life ballpark dish. When you need a fork to eat your loaded fries, they’ve been done right.
OK, so maybe it isn’t the healthiest thing, so walk it off along the riverfront…
Great American Ball Park Food Tip #3: LaRosa’s Pizza. I would be giving LaRosa’s a shoutout anyway, since I visited one while I was in town and the folks there couldn’t have been nicer to me. But it’s pretty good pizza in its own right, and I’m a South Jersey pizza snob. I live in an area with several chains: Domino’s, Papa John’s, Little Caesar’s, Pizza Hut. LaRosa’s is easily better than all of them, and I hope they open a few in New Jersey.
At Great American LaRosa’s is represented with a few stands in the upper and lower concourses; you can get a plain slice, a slice with pepperoni, and a Montgomery Inn BBQ sandwich for some reason. According to the Reds website, they sell a calzone too, but I didn’t see it. Don’t be put off by the congealing slices that have been sitting on display for a while; your slice should be a little fresher.
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Great American Ball Park Food Tip #4) Frisch’s Big Boy Burgers. Frisch’s is another chain that started in Cincinnati; they were added to the long list of local chains featured in Great American once they figured out how to install their topsider grills. The stand in the main concourse actually has a statue of the big Frisch’s mascot in a Reds uniform. Very cool.
Frisch’s stands have the famous Big Boy burger, the double decker with two 1/8 pound patties, lettuce, cheese, pickles and Frisch’s famous tartar sauce (heavy on mayo and pickle relish). If you like that tartar sauce, you can get some extra for your burger.
Great American Ball Park Food Tip #5) Graeter’s (Black Cherry) Ice Cream. Cincinnatians know who Graeter’s is; heck, I’m from New Jersey and I know who they are. I once spent an hour searching through town for one; thankfully I can just go to a Reds game now.
Even though they’ve been in Cincinnati for almost 150 years. Graeter’s is probably the only brand of ice cream you need to know in town; they have a kiosk near Gapper’s Alley. I don’t know if they’ll have every Graeter’s flavor, but try the black cherry or the raspberry chocolate chip if they’re there.
That’s just a few of the great food items at Reds games; here’s the Reds menu if you’re looking for more. (Honestly though, these five are all I need.)
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