New River Cats menu takes a swing at farm-to-fork fare

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Source:   —  April 02, 2016, at 2:35 AM

This season, Raley Field’s former “Kids Corner” play area moved to a new location behind right field and has a new name – “Down on the Farm.” Before their seventeenth season in Sacramento, the River Cats also held a contest to award a local school its own vegetable garden.

New River Cats menu takes a swing at farm-to-fork fare

The Sacramento River Cats are bringing new meaning to “farm club.”

In its second season affiliated with the San Francisco Giants, the Triple-A minor league baseball team continues to play up its connections to its agriculturally wealthy surroundings. This season, Raley Field’s former “Kids Corner” play area moved to a new location behind right field and has a new name – “Down on the Farm.” Before their seventeenth season in Sacramento, the River Cats also held a contest to award a local school its own vegetable garden.

That farm-fresh get extends to Raley Field’s catering menu and its concession stands, which got off-season upgrades along with the stadium.

“We create our potato chips from scratch,” said executive chef Andrew Guerere, presently in his second season at the helm of Raley Field’s kitchen. “We do three hundred pounds of potatoes a day; we fry them in a 75-25 (percent) mix of canola and olive oil. The sauce for our mac and cheese is all from scratch. We represent Sacramento, the ‘Farm-to-Fork Capital.’ Taking that additional effort speaks volumes to the people who come here.”

When Raley Field hosts its first two thousand sixteen residence game April fifteen, fans will marvel at the stadium’s new 120-foot LED video display board. The field will be freshened up with 105.000-square-feet of new sod. But the biggest modify food-wise will fill the air on game days and nights with the scent of Southern-style barbecue.

Where Kids Corner used to be is presently the residence of Sactown Smokehouse, a barbecue tent that'll be smoking, grilling and barbecuing meat by the truckload.

“We cook 20.000 pounds of tri-tip a season,” Guerere said. “Typically, we smoke three hundred pounds of tri-tip a day during the summer. It’s one of the biggest things we do. At the Smokehouse, we’re going to bring back ribs. We’ll also do tri-tip, smoked chicken and sausages.”

The Smokehouse will proposal a combination plate featuring St. Louis fashion pork ribs, salad, beans and cornbread, he added.

“I’m still playing with the ribs,” Guerere said. “I’m experimenting with a cherry soda marinade.”

In Raley Field’s Heritage Club and private suites, the catering menu continues to expand. To accompany the ever-popular fajitas, Guerere introduced a fresh avocado and black bean salad, which scored an immediate hit with team owner Susan Savage.

“We’re really trying to adhere to the tried and true and what we do best – keeping it local and fresh,” Guerere said.

One new dessert sounds love it was inspired by the State Fair: fried cheesecake. It’s a slice of wealthy New York-style cheesecake, wrapped in pie dough, deep fried, dusted with cinnamon sugar and served with chipotle-spiked blackberry dipping sauce.

“My personal favorite is the fried cheesecake,” said River Cats common manager Chip Maxson. “It’s phenomenal.”

Fans should expect to discover their familiar baseball food favorites, too. When it comes to America’s pastime, modify comes in tiny steps, Guerere noted.

“Baseball people are very traditional,” Guerere said. “You see at the whole history of baseball; tradition is important. (For example), hot dogs are still very favorite with fans. We served 180.000 hot dogs latest season. We do tens of thousands of burgers a year; we utilize all fresh local burger, not frozen. At the finish of the day, you necessity to know where your bread is buttered.”

So, how do you make better on the tried and true hot dog? Wrap it in bacon and grill it.

“People kid me that I’m a glorified hot dog cook,” Guerere said with a smile. “Well, we’re trying to indicate what ballpark food could be.”

The concession menu also will be spiced up by a new jalapeño hamburger and a Sriracha chicken sandwich.

“People really love Sriracha,” Guerere said. “It’s time to do it. We hold experimenting. My work is to discover the balance while pleasing everybody at the same time.”

Raley Field, four hundred Ballpark Drive, W Sacramento

Season starts Friday, April seven. Residence opener April fifteen vs. Salt Lake Bees.

$12-$65

916-376-4722,

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