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Citi Field Seating Tips – Best Seats, Cheap Seats + Standing Room
Posted by Kurt Smith
If you are planning a trip to see the home of the Mets, or even if you’re a regular who would like to improve their view of the game, we’ve got your back. Here is your complete, user-friendly Citi Field seating guide – with everything you need to know to find the best seats at Citi Field, for whatever your budget size!
Citi is a great ballpark, but there are some seats to avoid, and some seats have great advantages, like club access for a lower price than you’d think. (BTW, be sure to check out my complete guide to Citi Field, and learn about the superb Citi Field food menu before your next trip.)
So here we go, broken down for some simplicity (it’s a lot, but for good reason, I promise!):
Citi Field Seating Chart + Layout
Really Cool + Pricey Club Seats
Group + Party Areas
Field Level Seating
Excelsior (Mezzanine) Level
Cheap Seats + Coca-Cola Corner
Promenade Level (+ More Cheap Seats)
Avoiding Obstructed Views
Standing Room at Citi Field
By the way, be sure to check out my complete guide to Citi Field, full of money-saving tips, and definitely know what’s on the superb Citi Field menu before you go!
There’s a lot to know here, so let’s get started after this quick word from TickPick…thank you for supporting our sponsors!
My friends at TickPick have Mets tickets…they offer a best price guarantee, a buyer’s trust guarantee, and NO service fees. Sounds like a no-brainer to me!
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Citi Field Seating, Part 1: Citi Field Seating Chart + Layout
The Citi Field seating layout is simple enough. The one- and two-digit numbered sections are the low seats behind home plate—club seats that are triple digits in price. The rest of the ballpark’s sections are numbered in three-digits. The lowest level (100) is the Field Level, the mezzanine with the Piazza 31 Club and Box seats is called the Excelsior Level (300), and the upper deck is the Promenade Level (400 and 500).
The numbering starts with 101 and 301 in right field and increases clockwise around the ballpark. The Promenade level starts in the right field corner with 401 and 501. The numbering continues until the Big Apple Reserved seats in center field at 140-142. The Coca-Cola Corner in right field is Sections 301-305.
Seat 1 in any row is closest to home plate, and in the Promenade level sections there are 17 rows to the top of the ballpark, where you can wave to pilots in the planes taking off from LaGuardia International. (Incidentally, if you want a better view of the planes, sit on the first base side of the field. It’s actually kind of cool.)
Short of the obstructed view seats (I’ll talk about that), generally most of the seats get high marks for the view of the field. If you’re just a foodie going to the game for the delicacies (and that’s definitely understandable here), you’d do well to sit down the line in right field or in the left field landing seats.
Depending on which types of seats you buy, you’ll have access to certain clubs; which ones will be listed on your ticket and the Mets have a chart on their website to help. It’s way too complicated to explain here – if this matters to you, check out the access chart.
So here is the breakdown, going from most to least expensive (I’m not bothering with the suites):
Citi Field Seating, Part 2: Really Cool But Pricey Club Seats
Delta Sky360 Club seats are nine sections of those padded, comfortable monsters directly behind home plate. They can cost as much as a half a grand and like in many sections, the first two Platinum rows of each section are costlier than the rest.
The Mets charge quite a bit for these tickets, and you can often find a better deal for them from TickPick or another third party seller. Delta Silver seats are directly behind the Delta Gold seats and cost about half the price; the markup probably isn’t worth “Lounge” access.
These seats come with access to the Delta Sky360 Club directly behind home plate. Two full service bars and chef-prepared dining, since that’s what baseball is about. The low end items like hot dogs and coffee are complimentary, gourmet items are not.
The restaurant has no view of the field, but it does have a view of the Mets batting practice cages. Like in all of the clubs, there are TVs to watch the action. In-seat service is included.
Recently the Mets have turned the first eight rows behind home plate into the Clover Home Plate Club, which they deem as “a perfect fit for companies looking to entertain their current or prospective clients in the best seats at Citi Field.” How can I become a “prospective client”?
Everything from Shackburgers to gourmet pizza and non-alcoholic beverages are all included in the Clover Club and can be ordered right from your seat. No small thing given typical Shake Shack lines. You can also use your ticket to get free food anywhere in the ballpark, which is pretty cool, but probably not worth the extra several hundred dollars.
Incidentally, the last rows of Delta sections have seats in front of aisles, making for an awful obstructed views with people walking in front of you. Avoid Row 20.
The Hyundai Club seats are the two lower level areas behind the Delta Club seats at first and third base. There’s a very cool-looking car decorated in Mets colors outside the club if you’re looking for it.
These seats are also usually triple digits in price, but you can get a reasonable deal on a midweek, non-Yankees game in April or May; it’s a better deal than the Deltas and worth it for the club access. Most of these go to season ticket holders, so you may find a better deal on TickPick or elsewhere, just be sure to compare the price to the Mets website.
This was originally called the “Ebbets Club”; it was renamed in response to Mets fans complaining about the tributes to the Dodgers at Citi, and pictures and memorabilia of the 1969 and 1986 championship teams have been added here.
The Hyundai Club includes a high end buffet with a carvery and pasta bar, and a dessert cart that is rolled out during the 7th inning. All of this, with non-alcoholic drinks and in-seat service, are included with the ticket.
The Piazza 31 Club Infield seats are on the Excelsior (Mezzanine) level between the bases. These tickets are now “Excelsior Gold” or “Excelsior Box”, and cost about half of what the Deltas cost.
Most of these seats are padded and covered by the upper tier, and there aren’t many rows, making getting in and out of your seat easy enough.
The Piazza lounge, on the Excelsior (second) level behind home plate, is open to Promenade Gold ticket holders and anyone else that paid more for their tickets. It is on top of the rotunda, and offers fine views of Flushing landmarks like the Unisphere and the Citi Field parking lot, but there is no view of the game. There are leather sofas though.
Inside the Club are food stands with high end grub, soft pretzels and cookies (check out Whole Hog BBQ), and there are a few stands where you can avoid lines. You have to pay for the food here, unfortunately, but there’s plenty of space to sit and eat.
Those are the seating areas for the well-to-do New Yorkers among us; before I tackle the rest of the seating areas, let’s go into the party areas for groups, which are numerous:
Citi Field Seating, Part 3: Group + Party Areas
After moving the Citi Field fences in for 2012 to accommodate whiny sluggers, the Mets discovered they had more party space for groups. Here is a list of spots where you can reserve tickets for a group with some perks included:
Big Apple Reserved seats are the field level seats in straightaway center, right next to that Big Apple that pops up whenever a Mets player hits a home run. Directly behind the Big Apple seats are tables where people can stand and watch while eating a gourmet food item; these are the closest seats to the center field concourse with its fancy food and Mr. Met kids area.
These seats used to only be available for groups, but you can get a ticket for a single game these days. For some reason, they’re popular on weekend nights and priced accordingly; but for weeknights they’re among the cheapest tickets in the ballpark.
The Citi Pavilion at Shea Bridge was formerly the “Shea Bridge Terrace”; apparently the Mets needed a more unwieldy name to help fans with its location. The sets of tables and chairs in this landing are just in front of the Shea Bridge, over the bullpens in right center field.
The Mets have updated this space, and there are now drink rails and tables with comfortable seating and phone chargers. They’ve also added a bar with “light snacks” exclusively for this section.
The Citi Pavilion is a group area and is now a drinks-inclusive ticket, at least if you don’t mind drinking Bud Light throughout the game. The seats go for triple digits in price though, so you’ll need to find a lot of enthusiastic fans.
The Honda Clubhouse is underneath the right field reserved seats, for a true field-level view of both the field and the bullpen. There are windows that can be closed on cold nights. The seating is table seating with padded seats in front.
There aren’t a lot of seats here, so if someone invites you, get to the game early. It has been expanded to accommodate the fences being moved in, but that just means there will be more people at your outing.
The Clubhouse is also for groups only—it includes buffet service and hi-def TVs to watch the parts of the game you miss at the odd vantage point. The Mets actually mentioned as one of the group benefits “Scoreboard Greeting (not visible from area)”. Yes, I laughed too when I read that. This spot can be reasonable for a night out with your friends, and as a group leader you get four tickets to a future game.
M&M’s Sweet Seats. The high left field wall is still here, but there’s a new and closer to home plate fence in front of it, so the Mets dedicated the space between the two fences to the iconic candy bits. Tickets include food and drinks served to your seat (or stool); before the game fans can chow on Nathan’s dogs among other food items. Nothing high end, unless you consider Nathan’s high end, which it is I suppose. They’ll even give you a cookie late in the game.
Again, tickets to a future game are included for the group leader.
As the Mets state, this is a prime spot to catch a batting practice home run ball in the newly hitter-friendly Citi Field, and it’s exclusive so you won’t have to push those pesky kids out of the way.
OK then, now on to seats for the rest of us, or some of us…again, from most to least expensive:
Citi Field Seating, Part 4: Field Level
The Metropolitan Box seats are on the lower level to the outside of the Delta Club seats. They come in four flavors, Gold, Silver, Bronze and good old Metropolitan Box, and the better ones have better club access that probably isn’t worth the markup of sometimes double the price.
If you’re looking at back row Field Level tickets (31 is the last row in most sections) and have a choice, try the Excelsior Box seats instead. The view is just as good, better even than top rows of field level seats that are covered and lose the scoreboards, club access is the same, and Excelsior seats are cheaper.
Field Level and Baseline Box seats are beyond the bases towards the foul pole. These seats are nicely angled towards the infield, making for less neck-twisting, and if you’re in Section 104, you’re facing directly towards home plate. Like just about everywhere else in the park, the first two rows of Field Box sections are more expensive, and not worth the significant markup in my opinion.
Lower level seats down the lines cost a bit more than even a team with the Mets’ recent success probably should, so this isn’t the place to look for bargains unless you’re using a third party seller, and look for low demand games.
Citi Field Seating, Part 5: Excelsior (Mezzanine) Level
The Excelsior is the Mezzanine (second) level; I’ve already talked about the Excelsior Gold and Box seats that are near to the Piazza 31 Club, but there are specialized outfield sections as well. Like the infield sections, the outfield sections are covered by the overhang of the upper deck, great for the shade, although in the upper rows you may lose some of the big scoreboards.
The rest of the Excelsior seats belong in the “cheap seats” section (including the Coca-Cola Corner):
Citi Field Seating, Part 6: Cheap Seats + Coca-Cola Corner
The Left Field and Right Field Reserved seats in the lower level have had their pricing lowered and are now the cheaper seats. Most of the seats are covered, especially in the Right Field area that is overlapped by the Coca-Cola Corner–nice on a hot or rainy day but it offers no view of either of the impressive big scoreboards.
These seats are close to both the center field concourse area and the World’s Fare Market, so you have plenty of very good grub choices just a few steps away, but I don’t know that it’s worth the very limited view.
Left Field Landing seats are on the Excelsior level in left field. Like the Piazza 31 Club seats, most of them are covered and there aren’t many rows. Out in left field here, you’re pretty far from home plate, so try to get the first couple of rows if you can.
These seats, like the Coca-Cola Corner seats, include access to the Piazza Club. This is important to know not only for club access (they are the cheapest tickets that include it), but also so that you don’t have to go up or down a floor to get from one side of the Excelsior level to the other. Good to know if you use a farther entrance.
Like with the Piazza Club, the Left Field Landing and Coca-Cola Corner are now available for group packages with food and beverage included.
Now about that big section under the Coca-Cola sign: The Coca-Cola Corner is that five sections of seats in the Excelsior level in right field, which hang over the Right Field Reserved seats.
These seats are sort of set aside from the rest of the park, and the Coca-Cola Corner has its own concourse area with sofas, cornhole games, a picnic area with Coke bottle top tables, and a landing to view lovely downtown Flushing. It’s a perfect view of Queens…blocks of muffler shops. Enjoy the urban renewal.
Coca-Cola Corner seats cost about the same as Left Field Landing, although they’re very different atmospheres. The Coca-Cola seats used to be about the same price as Promenade Infield, but they are more now, so apparently the Corner is becoming a popular place. Batting practice homers land here, for one. It’s also, with its extra entertainment, a decent spot for kids.
If you’re sensitive to the sun, though, this definitely isn’t the best choice, since you’ll bake during day games and it’s the last place to see shade for night games. Highly recommended to bring a hat, sunscreen and sunglasses here.
Citi Field Seating, Part 7: Promenade Level
The cheapest seats in Citi Field are in the Promenade (400-500 sections) level past the bases. The Promenade Reserved Infield seats are only slightly more expensive than the Promenade Reserved (500 sections past the bases)–nowadays the outfield sections of the Promenade Level are the cheapest seats in the ballpark (and rightly so). They are very far away, and can be downright frightening on a windy day.
The Promenade Gold and Box seats in the upper level (400 section) are considerably pricier–sometimes more than double – than those in the 500 section directly behind them. Twice as good seats? For the peace of mind of avoiding a glass landing being in front of you, maybe–but you can often find a deal with a third party.
The Jim Beam Highball Club on this level is available to just about everyone except for the Promenade Reserved ticket holders. It is behind home plate on the upper level, offers some amazing food choices and two full bars in an air-conditioned place to come in out of the rain or heat. That’s worth something. You can watch the game from there, but a lot of people do this, and the view isn’t quite optimal.
I’ve read that the ushers can be somewhat lax in checking your ticket there, in case you’re looking to crash a party.
Citi Field Seating, Part 8: Avoiding Promenade Obstructed Views
In many cases, obstructed views at Citi Field are a by-product of placing seats close to the field, something the Mets weren’t willing to compromise and is common in most ballparks. You shouldn’t miss much with those. But in some instances, especially in the Promenade level, glass partitions are placed in a manner that can block as much as a quarter of the field to people sitting in the wrong spot.
The Mets have started labeling such tickets as having a limited view, but you’d do well to know what to look for beforehand.
The worst problems by far are in the Promenade Reserved seats past the bases, so pay attention buying seats there. Since Seat 1 is always closest to home plate, you should be okay with a higher-numbered seat in a low row. Otherwise, try to get a seat in Row 4 or higher.
If you do end up with an obstructed view seat, you can call Fan Assistance (646-438-5000) and nicely ask to be moved to a better seat. The Mets will probably accommodate you.
Citi Field Seating, Part 9: Standing Room
The Mets occasionally make standing room tickets available for popular contests like Opening Day, and they will announce availability in your newsletter or their other social media outlets. They also offer an “Amazin’ Mets Pass”; for a very reasonable monthly fee you can attend most all of the Mets home games that month, (Yankees and Opening Day games excluded). You need the MLB Ballpark app for this to get the barcode on your phone. A chance to sample all of the killer food options at Citi.
I read a great suggestion on Reddit about this…if you go on a couple of giveaway nights, you could sell your swag on eBay and recoup a good portion of the cost.
Should you have gotten into the ballpark this way (or should you be otherwise unhappy with your seat), the open concourse throughout most of the field level creates plenty of standing space, and there are rails to lean on. You can also find spots for standing and tables for food in the center field food court, which is closer to the action than upper left field seats.
Lots of space in the Coca-Cola Corner too, if you like a good hangout spot. If you’re not picky, you could probably grab a seat in the lesser Promenade level seats.
Feeling educated? I hope this extensive Citi Field seating guide has been helpful to you; being able to land a great seat makes a big difference at this ballpark. I speak from experience.
Plenty more Citi Field info on this site for you…check out my complete guide to Citi Field, including details on the best ways to get to the ballpark and some great photo-ops…or have a look at the delicious looking photos on this very detailed Citi Field food page.
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Citi Field Food: Best Eats at New York Mets Games
Posted by Kurt Smith
Here it is baseball and Mets fans, your astoundingly detailed, enticingly illustrated, and incredibly helpful guide to the Citi Field food menu! Don’t miss out on the Amazin’ eats at one of the best ballparks for food in baseball. This post will help you find the best food at Citi Field for your own taste, at a Mets game or any event, for that matter…and partake of some inimitable NYC baseball cuisine.
I’m going to cover a lot here, so I’m breaking this down for you; but don’t skip anything!
Citi Field Restaurants
Classic Tastes of NYC
Tastes Like Chicken
Big And Fancy Sides
NYC Pizza – Plus!
Underrated Stuff – Hot Dogs, Burgers, Sausages + Pastrami on Rye
Cookies, Waffles + Other Desserts
Keep It Healthy – Kosher, Vegetarian, Vegan + Gluten Free
Bring Your Own + Other Tips
Yep, we’ve got a lot to review here, so let’s get started…after this quick word from our sponsor:
My friends at TickPick have Mets tickets…they offer a best price guarantee, a buyer’s trust guarantee, and NO service fees. Sounds like a no-brainer to me!
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Citi Field Food, Part 1: Restaurants
I’m not going to go into the really fancy high end clubs; much of what is there is available around the ballpark anyway, but I will talk a bit about the more accessible restaurants at Citi Field.
The Caesars Sportsbook at the Metropolitan Grille restaurant (jeez, that’s a mouthful), in the left field corner on the mezzanine (Excelsior) level, is available to everyone except Promenade less than-Gold and Coca-Cola Corner non-season ticket holders. Your ticket will say if you have access. Here’s a pro tip while I’m thinking about it: if you’re searching for tickets from a third party like TickPick, try to get them from a season ticket holder…you’ll have access to all of the reasonably nice clubs.
By most accounts, the food here—salads, soups, wood-fired pizzas, hardwood smoked pork ribs, etc. from a chef-prepared buffet—and the views of the field, marina, and city are all extraordinary.
It will cost a little bit, and more so if you want a table with a view of the field and/or order some unusual mixed drinks from the full bar. Even with a prime ticket, you will likely need a reservation for a spot with a view.
The Mets have a game day lunch menu, where you can fill your plate with a nice variety of food–there’s even an omelet bar for brunches–for a reasonable price by ballpark standards. The dinner menu is a few bucks more. Both are slightly cheaper for kids.
The Piazza 31 Club lounge, on the Excelsior (mezzanine) level behind home plate and is named for one of the all-time great Mets. Like the Grille, is open to Promenade Gold ticket holders and anyone else that paid more for their tickets. It is on top of the front entrance rotunda, and offers fine views of Flushing landmarks like the Unisphere and the Citi Field parking lot, but there’s no view of the game.
Inside the Club are two food options that, to my knowledge, you can’t get anywhere else in the ballpark: the Whole Hog BBQ, with 16-hour smoked pork butt sandwiches slathered with Carolina BBQ sauce and braised pork belly burnt ends with pickled jalapenos. Easily worth the extra bucks for access. Whole Hog also has Cuban sandwiches and sausages with caramelized peppers and onions.
There’s also Twist homemade soft pretzels that you can get with pepperoni and cheddar or cinnamon sugar. Much better than your typical ballpark soft pretzel, even if that’s a low bar.
Ebbs Brewing Co. is technically a part the ballpark, but it’s got a separate entrance from being inside, replacing what was Mikkeller’s craft brew restaurant. Mikkeller’s was popular, but Ebbs isn’t very different. They offer some fine brew selections, including lagers, stouts, IPAs, double IPAs, and several hard seltzers. It’s a place to have a sit down meal before or after the game in an area where there isn’t much of that; the menu includes fancy items like everything bagel soft pretzels, handmade dumplings, and multiple types of sausages.
The prices for beer especially are lower than inside the ballpark, so it’s a place to have one or two better than Budweiser beers before the game. If you can wait until after the game to eat, it’s a good spot to wait out the often bad Citi Field exit traffic.
I’m not sure what the story is with the McFadden’s once attached to the ballpark; currently I’m reading that it’s a spot to get vaccinated, which wouldn’t make it much of a fun place to have a brew. Their website is inactive which probably isn’t a good sign. I’ll update this if I hear any news.
Citi Field Food, Part 2: A Taste of New York City
If you want to really see the amazing culinary offerings that Citi Field has to offer…and there’s quite a bit…start at the Taste of The City food court in center field.
The Shake Shack has a Madison Square Park tradition dating back to 2004. The Shack serves up the hugely popular fresh beef Shackburger, and the new Smoke Shack with applewood-smoked bacon, cheese and cherry peppers, both on potato buns. They also have a very good veggie ‘shroom burger. Very thick milkshakes and frozen custard for dessert.
The Shackburger is adorned with lettuce, cheese, tomato and Shack Sauce, and an extra patty is available for a few extra bucks (it’s worth it). Incidentally, the fries here with or without cheese are excellent, crinkle cut and crispy if not as thick as Nathan’s.
The Shake Shack is by far the most popular stand at Citi Field, so the lines get very long and the wait can be as long as a half an hour. I read that there were fans waiting for two hours during the 2015 World Series. The stand has been expanded and took over what was Blue Smoke BBQ, so hopefully that works better.
If you don’t want to wait long, try going as soon as the gates open or well after the game starts. If you’re gonna wait, go all out and get a concrete too; or a Strike Cone with vanilla custard blended with cookie dough. You can walk it off.
The glowing Pat LaFrieda’s cart with the grassy sign in the center field area is home to the gourmet NYC meat provider’s beef sandwich. LaFrieda’s sandwich is strips of filet mignon with Jack cheese and caramelized onions browned in balsamic vinegar, served on a baguette with au jus. I’ve never tried it, but I’m told the onions make the sandwich.
There is an additional stand on the Promenade level, so people there may be paying more for a sandwich than for their ticket. You can also get Steak Frites…waffle fries with steak, caramelized onions and Jack cheese sauce.
LaFrieda’s sandwiches command a hefty price tag even for a ballpark, but that doesn’t stop anyone, and the lines can get long here. (If you want to save a couple of bucks, check my Tightwad Tips at the end of this.)
A lot of fans, myself included, were sad to hear of Mama’s of Corona’s departure (Leo’s Latticini does still exist in NYC, though), but Cento Percento (Italian for “100 percent”, as in the quality of the experience) fills the bill quite nicely. Cento Percento accurately calls itself “Italian street food”; you can find their food trucks in various locations in NYC. It’s long past time for some food truck items to be in a ballpark.
Cento Percento is in the World’s Fare Market, in the right field corner. Their offerings include Tuscan-style paninis on fluffy ciabatta rolls, with porchetta and pesto, or a vegetarian mozzarella sandwich called the Classico. There’s also meatball or fried eggplant cups with arrabbiata sauce here.
I was going to cheat a bit here and include a picture of the Mama’s cannoli out of respect, but Cento Percento has cannolis as well.
Jacob’s Pickles is an Upper West Side eatery that has planted its flag at Citi Field, in the Jim Beam Highball Club on the Promenade Level (get to know the Highball Club, trust me). Their specialty is Southern-accented comfort food, and pickles, obviously, which they place prominently on their popular fried chicken and biscuit sandwich. You can get your fried pickles here as well, a vegetarian option.
The chicken and biscuit sandwich gets great reviews, even if it’s on the messy side (that might be an understatement), so it’s probably a good idea to grab some napkins and sit down for it. Southern comfort food is actually pretty rare in ballparks in my experience.
Like with Mama’s, the Mets seemed to anticipate fan unhappiness with the departure of a food stand, so when the revered “Catch of The Day” parted ways with Citi Field, they replaced it with the Lobster Shack (it’s not in the same spot, but it’s close). Lobster Shack is the Mets’ food guys’ handiwork, but they get it done with their delightfully photogenic fresh Maine lobster roll served with bayside chips. Try the East Shore edition with lobster dipped in melted butter as nature intended.
They also offer loaded chips, covered with lobster, lobster fondue, cilantro dressing and chives, and a creamy lobster bisque.
I hear lines can be pretty long at Lobster Shack, so try getting there when the gates open if you want to try it.
There’s Pig Beach BBQ outposts in both Brooklyn and Queens, two population centers known for producing Mets fans. Now the chef-inspired BBQ is doing their part to improve the grub at the Highball Club (see?). Pig Beach describes their approach to que as “an alchemy of multiple cooking disciplines, with a strong focus on live wood fire.”
I love when they choose bold words. Anyway, at Citi you can get a People’s Champion Burger, made with a beef brisket and short rib blend, “bacon onion magic”, American cheese, sweet and tangy pickles, and secret sauce on a Martin’s potato roll. If that isn’t championing the people, I don’t know what is.
But wait, there’s more…Bases Loaded Fries! Seasoned crispy fries with pulled pork, cheese sauce, pickled jalapenos and Pig Beach’s own vinegar BBQ sauce. Quite a bit for sharing, and all the major food groups represented except for candy corn.
People don’t say much about Tacocina in the Taste of The City food court…even the Mets just list their taco options and casually mention that they serve “food inspired by Mexican flavors”. They can do better than that, especially since the Tacocina joint in Brooklyn is a product of the Union Square Hospitality Group, founded by Danny Meyer of Shake Shack fame.
So now that I’ve given you more confidence in the Mets’ taco stand…get your chicken, pork and pineapple, or vegetarian tacos here…it’s among the healthier available foods in the food court, and don’t forget about the condiment sauces! Chips with salsa or guacamole are available here too, and they’re better quality than typical ballpark nacho chips.
I’m still going with the fancy items, but I separated some of these for chicken lovers.
Citi Field Food, Part 3: Tastes Like Chicken
Fuku’s spicy chicken sandwich in the right field corner is the creation of chef David Chang. The Fuku sandwich is simple but genius. It’s a chicken sandwich with something called “Ssam Korean chili sauce”–which has a hint of habanero – and is cooked just right to be crispy and juicy at the same time. It’s served on a roll with “Fuku butter”, which is something like mayo.
You used to be able to get “loaded fries” too, with spicy cheese sauce, ranch, bacon and scallions. I’ve read that the fries are amazeballs, but I don’t see them on the current Citi Field dining guide so I imagine you’ll have to look.
For families looking for a spicy meal, get a Mets helmet with two sandwiches, chicken fingers, potato wedges and sauce for a ballpark price. There’s also a “milk bar” that includes several different types of cookies, including a “compost” that includes ingredients like pretzels and coffee oats.
Fuku is popular in NYC and its addition to Citi was applauded a lot. It’s a very spicy sandwich, so be prepared with a drink if need be.
The Amazin’ Chicken Co. isn’t a NYC chicken specialty shop…this one comes from the Mets own food preparing folks, who are actually up to the task. This is the spot for chicken tenders, chicken Caesar wraps, and “cheesy tater kegs”…a deep fried potato filled with a three cheese blend. There’s also General Tso’s chicken tenders, free range chicken with Tso’s sauce, sesame seeds and scallions.
They also offer a good family meal deal, if your kids are into chicken tenders (which has been a given since the invention of the McNugget); a big bucket of tenders covered with the tater kegs. The chicken pieces are very large, and you’ll have at least enough for two here.
Check out the condiment and sauce station near Amazin’ Chicken; garlic aioli, house ranch, chipotle BBQ, and Buffalo sauce, great additions to already amazin’ poultry offerings.
Sweet Chick, behind the right field seats on the field level, is a chicken and waffles/comfort food joint with several locations in NYC and LA; it’s partly owned by Nas, if you’re interested in supporting your local hip-hop community.
Sweet Chick offers up chicken and waffles with boneless chicken, honey butter and maple syrup; they also have a spicy Buffalo chicken sandwich with bread and butter pickles, or a simple fried chicken sandwich with lettuce, tomato and herb mayo. They’ve added loaded waffle fries that are a big hit at the ballpark. Sweet Chick is popular around the city, especially for their chicken, so there must be something right about the formula.
There’s also the aforementioned Jacob’s Pickles chicken sandwich…lots of well-done poultry here. Now for some stand-alone sides…after this quick word from our sponsor.
Citi Field Food, Part 4: Big And Fancy Sides
The Arancini Bros. aren’t actually named “Arancini”; it was two music techs who met on tour and created their own version of deep fried risotto balls. They’re sold at the Essex Street Market, Whole Foods, and of course, Citi Field.
At the ballpark you can get any of six types of risotto balls stuffed with either meat sauce, basil pesto and mozzarella, taco meat with salsa, sour cream and cheddar, or a dessert edition with Nutella and rolled in cinnamon sugar. You can get the full experience and mix and match any of them.
Arancini Bros. is on the upper and lower level; you no longer need club access for this.
If you’ve got an itch for local grass fed dairy farm fresh oversized mozzarella sticks…and we all get that from time to time…the Brooklyn catering crew at Big Mozz has a Vendy Award-winning version and you can find it on the upper and lower levels.
The slightly larger-than-usual mozz sticks come with four seasonings and a choice of pesto, chipotle, or marinara dipping sauce. I’ve tried these with the pesto sauce and they’re definitely a high quality mozzarella stick, so I’m happy to see them back in Citi. An extra cup of sauce costs extra.
The popular Box Frites stand has also been replaced; but if you like fancy French fries, you’ll be fine with the Metropolitan Fry Factory, also in center field. Again, these are the Mets’ guys, making hand-cut (I always picture people using karate chops to cut potatoes in half) fries with four house made sauces: chipotle BBQ, classic Buffalo, house ranch and garlic aioli. One of those has got to work for you.
Even more popular than the fried potatoes though, are the deep fried foot long hot dogs; MFF has four offerings including the Steakhouse Ripper with short rib & bacon chili, beer cheese and chives. Man, what are you talking about! Or the Tex Mex Ripper, with pickled jalapeno guacamole, chipotle aioli and chili dusted corn tortilla chips.
This is about the point where I think a Yankees fan might make a conversion.
If there’s anything that could only be in New York, it’s a guy named Murray making phenomenal mac and cheese. Murray’s Cheese got its start with a cheese shop in Greenwich Village, and today they’re featured in the Jim Beam Highball Club. It’s curly radiatore pasta with a three cheese blend…and it’s thick stuff, so you might want to hold off if you’re running a marathon afterward.
They have two types of mac and cheese, Classic or Buffalo, both with crispy breadcrumbs on the top. The Buffalo edition uses their signature blue cheese, with chicken, ranch, and Buffalo sauce. Comfort food at its best.
Citi Field Food, Part 5: NYC Pizza – Plus!
On pizza alone, Citi Field has been wiping up the floor with its NYC counterpart in the Bronx for years (Yankee Stadium actually featured Papa John’s…WTH), and they’ve got NYC pizza covered.
Patsy’s Pizzeria, in center field, the Piazza 31 Club, and the Promenade level, has existed since its beginnings in Harlem in 1933, so they’re arguably right to call themselves “New York’s Original and Preeminent Pizza Dynasty”. Even if I’m not sure exactly what that means, it has my respect, and it sounds like a step above your typical ballpark pizza. I presume it’s coal-fired here as well.
At the ballpark you have a choice of regular, Margherita, or pepperoni slices, nothing out of the ordinary. Maybe that is on purpose, so that fans save room for a pizza cupcake.
Did someone say Pizza Cupcakes? Yes, and the Pizza Cupcake is a New York delicacy in its own right; it’s a creation of chef Andrea Meggiato. The pizza cupcake is available in multiple places on all of the levels.
If you like pepperoni rolls, you’ll like the pizza cupcake…it’s just shaped differently when you think about it. Or you can get the Margherita version, another vegetarian option. This being a chef inspired thing, the sauce has the right zest, and the crust is properly flaky. The best part? It’s easier to carry around and eat than a slice of pizza. No offense Patsy.
The Pizza Cupcake was actually featured on Shark Tank, where Mark Cuban told them, “I hate you because I wanna eat these.” That’s a weird reason to hate someone unless you’re allergic.
Here’s one of my favorite things about the Citi Field food options…even the no frills ballpark fare is still pretty good.
Citi Field Food, Part 6: The Underrated Stuff – Hot Dogs, Burgers, Sausages + Pastrami on Rye
If you like burgers, Citi Field has multiple offerings for you, beyond the aforementioned Shake Shack. I have to give a mention to Alonso’s Arctic Grill (yes, named for that Pete Alonso) and their amazing and popular Polar Burger – a Pat LaFrieda beef burger with maple spiced caramelized onions, smoked gouda cheese, lettuce and tomato on a brioche bun.
In 2022 Alonso’s added the Polar Burger 2.0 – with special sauce, American cheese, cherry pepper bacon jam, and duck fat (!) on a toasted sesame brioche bun. Can’t wait for 2023! This is a caloric bomb, so Alonso’s also offers a Beyond Burger version.
As far as I know, this is the only stop at Citi where you can get onion rings, but I could be wrong about that.
Burgers & Fries In keeping with Pat LaFrieda’s plan to take over the Mets world, his burgers are the Official Burger of the Mets, much to the delight of fans (which may help explain the lines at the Shake Shack). LaFrieda’s burgers are now sold at any stand that sells burgers. The aptly named Burgers & Fries stands sell LaFrieda burgers, Nathan’s dogs, and veggie dogs, plus chicken tenders if you aren’t yet impressed.
Here’s a pro tip for you…there is no shame in eschewing the Shake Shack line for this generic burger stand. Not only is it high-quality beef, but the Mets have some of the best condiment stands I’ve seen in a ballpark, and you can load up your burger with mushrooms, sauerkraut and/or NYC red onion relish. Works just fine for a great burger.
There are enough Nathan’s hot dog stands in the rest of the ballpark that you are never far from one. In addition to their famous all-beef regular, footlong dogs, corn dogs and burgers, most Nathan’s stands have Carvel ice cream and most of them (but not all) serve crinkle-cut fries or Buffalo wings as well. I probably don’t need to tell you that Nathan’s fries are great.
The stands have packets of BBQ sauce or honey mustard, something a bit different. Take a dozen of them. (Citi Field has one of the most expensive hot dogs in baseball.) Again, remember the condiment stands…I’m a big fan of the NYC onion relish.
A good sausage at a ballgame should never be considered underrated…and there are Premio sausage stands throughout the concourse, and for all of the other options out there, some Mets fans will tell you that this simple sausage and pepper sandwich is the best deal for the money at Citi Field. Especially when you can pile on a nice variety of stuff from the condiment stands. (I promise that’s the last time I gush about the condiment stands, but just saying.)
The cryptically named Hot Pastrami on Rye stand in the left field corner has nice and hefty pastrami sandwiches and a pastrami dog (a hot dog covered in pastrami and Gold’s deli mustard). The pastrami sandwich is kind of an underrated item here; the stand isn’t in a big food court or anything, but it’s a popular New York thing and the sandwiches aren’t too high on the calories meter.
They didn’t have them in my last visit, but in the past the star at this stand was pastrachos: chips covered with pastrami sandwich stuff like sauerkraut. If I hear of their return I’ll let you know.
The Mets get really excited about CitySteak, enthusiastically pointing out on their website that you can get…wait for it…a “classic cheesesteak sandwich” here. Not just a cheesesteak sandwich, but a classic one! Incidentally, they don’t look too bad and the lines are probably shorter than most, and I’m presuming the meat is from Pat LaFrieda’s, so this might be a quiet little steal.
The Mets don’t have a crazy variation of one of baseball’s greatest foods, but the aptly named Nachos kiosks take care of supply; get a large plate of chicken or beef nachos, in a souvenir helmet if you like.
No fancy cheese, just the Whiz glop, but it works. It’s a big enough (and calorie-laden enough) pile of chips with junk for two. But looking at the prices it looks like the helmet is something like $6 extra; if you get that, keep the helmet. (Are there any videos of a fan wearing one after finishing the nachos? Please let me know if you find one.)
The Nachos stands also have burritos and burrito bowls…and just saying, I consider the burrito to be one of the ideal ballpark foods. Portability!
Citi Field Food, Part 7: Cookies, Waffles + Other Desserts
What, you thought just the main courses were fancy? Keep your fork!
Wowfulls was a staple of food festivals in the area for several years before opening up a store in Manhattan; it’s known for Hong Kong egg waffles, shaped into a cone and filled with ice cream and toppings.
Choose from multiple choices of fancy ice cream…vanilla rainbow, chocolate brownie batter, or salted caramel cheesecake…toppings include fruity pebbles, cookie dough bites or Oreo crumbles. All of the desserts something called “pocky sticks” on them…chocolate coated biscuit sticks. Well worth two hours on the treadmill.
The super popular Greenwich Village Cookie DO dessert shop’s cookie dough was added to the Citi Field food menu in 2017; shop owner Kristen Tomlan came up with a recipe that heat treats the flour and uses pasteurized egg product; in other words, you won’t get salmonella eating this cookie dough.
At the ballpark you can get chocolate chip cookie dough; with blue and orange sprinkles for Mets fans. I’ve read that Cookie DO makes a gluten free dough; no word on whether that is in the ballpark. It’s also not too high on the calorie meter as sugary desserts go.
Cookie DO is all over the ballpark these days, so no need to wait in line.
Cookie Crumz, also in the Highball Club (another reason to befriend a season ticket holder), comes from two locations in Astoria and Long Island City. The idea for their cookies, according to their website, was “a simple craving one day for a super indulgent, mind blowing cookie”. Must have been some craving given the result.
Their offerings at Citi include the Fun-Met-I (sounds like confetti, see). It’s got white chocolate chips and Mets-colored sprinkles. Or try their Chunky Dunk – packed with milk and dark chocolate chips. Subtle but profound differences in the classic dessert, and they’re thicker than you’re probably used to.
Mister Softee is the “Official Soft Serve Ice Cream of the Mets”. Mr. Softee cones and milkshakes are found in the concourse areas, and now you can get it in a Home Run Apple bowl…just when you thought simple ice cream at a ballgame wasn’t anything special!
But if you’d like a healthier sweet snack, try the Dole Whip (here’s the recipe!)…you can find these on the upper and lower level and in the Piazza 31 Club. For the uninitiated, a Dole Whip is something like softy serve ice cream, but it’s fruity and dairy free…at least the half that isn’t mixed with vanilla custard.
Choose from pineapple or strawberry, again with vanilla custard swirl if you’re okay with some dairy in your dessert. This, I think, is only available in the Piazza 31 Club.
Tipsy Scoop is an idea whose time has come, especially in the realm of ballpark delicacies. It’s various flavors of ice cream mixed with various flavors of mixed cocktails. Try a dark chocolate whiskey with salted caramel ice cream, or get a load of the Strawberry White Sangria Float: white Sangria sorbet with Prosecco, strawberry gummies, fresh lemon and a mini ice cream cone.
I perused Tipsy Scoop’s website a bit and on a couple of flavors of their boozy ice cream, they show it as being 5% alcohol. I don’t know how much hand-crafted, 10-proof ice cream you’d need to take the sting out of a tough Mets loss, but I’m sure it helps.
Tipsy Scoop is also in the Jim Beam Highball Club, which as you now know, is basically a one-stop destination for some of the best eats in baseball.
Citi Field Food, Part 8: Healthier Stuff at Citi Field – Kosher, Vegetarian, Vegan, and Gluten Free
Prime Kosher Sports has been around for a few years at Citi Field, and they offer the full gamut of ballpark food, kosher-style: hot dogs, burgers, fries, chicken tenders, deli sandwiches, knishes, even a pulled brisket sandwich on a pretzel roll. There are some decent snacks here too, like Bamba peanut butter puffs and fluff popcorn.
This is yet another style of French fries at Citi Field; I’m not sure what the total number of types of fries the Mets offer but I’m betting it’s close to a dozen. And that’s awesome. Prime Kosher Sports is in the center field food court with all the greats.
Since the ability to eat at the ballgame is a stumbling block to veganism for many, the Mets even covered that too…Vegan City in the right field corner makes it possible for vegans to eat Beyond Burgers, Beyond Sausage & Peppers, even vegan nachos with Jack Fruit chili, vegan cheese, roasted salsa and guacamole. You just might be able to talk me into going vegan now.
The World’s Fare Market in the right field corner has grab and go stuff, like bags of pistachios and peanuts and the like. The market houses a branch of Great Neck’s Daruma of Tokyo, where you can get the sushi, avocado rolls, and Asian salads that are offered in every ballpark these days (when I first wrote that years ago, it was sarcasm). This spot and the World’s Fare in general is also a good destination for vegetarians and healthy eaters, if a little pricey.
Citi Field also helps out celiac Mets fans, with a Gluten Free food stand in the World’s Fare Market area. They have gluten-free hot dogs and burgers (on gluten-free buns, obviously), turkey burgers, Nathan’s fries, and Glutenberg beer. The Mets on occasion have a Celiac Awareness Night, so keep an eye on your newsletter for that one.
Citi Field Food, Part 9: Bring Your Own + Other Money-Saving Tips
Remember that you can bring a 16*16*8 soft bag in the ballpark with you, so long as it does not contain hard bottles or alcohol. The Mets don’t list food as a prohibited item, but you’re allowed one plastic bottle of water or soda before the game.
There aren’t many takeout restaurants or drugstores a short walk away from Citi Field, but there are places near 7 train stations. Main Street in Flushing (one stop away on the 7 or LIRR station) has several great Mexican and Chinese and other ethnic takeout joints, but this is a lot of trouble just to save a few bucks. Unless you’re coming from one of these places anyway, I would just put water and maybe some peanuts in your bag.
There are four stands that offer smaller portions at smaller prices for kids. They are located behind Sections 114, 121, 408 and 421, including in the upper level food court. The Nathan’s dogs are skinny, but they won’t care. The Mr. Met Kitchen in center field has a kids meal with a dog, popcorn and a juice box with a prize included at a fair price.
It seems like a small thing, but bring your Citi credit card. Several stands, like the Pat LaFrieda steak sandwich stand, will offer a couple of bucks off an item for using your Citi card. Incidentally, I’ve done pretty well saving money with my Citi MasterCard here, especially finding ticket deals, and MasterCard can help you save some green at Yankees games too.
If you’re not drinking alcohol, you can become a designated driver at one of the Budweiser pledge booths, and they’ll give you a coupon for a free soda. The booths are located behind Section 119, 310, and 418.
There you have it my friends…all of your food choices at the beautiful home of the New York Metropolitans. It’s fitting that a New York City ballpark stepped up its concession game; while the Yankees have their own impressive selections, they don’t come close to the offerings in Queens.
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