It's hard to believe, but summer is nearing completion and football pre-season is already here. The Miami Dolphins play the St. Louis Rams this Thursday, August 28 at Sun Life Stadium and if you're going to the game -- go hungry for both a win and a solid meal.
This time, we're not talking just nachos and hot dogs, although those are still available in elevated form. This season, you're just as likely to chow down on sausages from heritage pork, chicken wings, sushi, and kale from a celebrity chef.
For the 2014 season, the Miami Dolphins "upped their game" foodwise. As Dolphins President & CEO Tom Garfinkel welcomed Miami media in to sample the new options at the stadium, he said he went directly to fans to ask them what they wanted. The answer? Simple food that tastes good, great service, and value pricing. "$14 is too much for a beer," the Dolphins executive exclaimed. Garfinkel also tapped into the local community when searching for food partners.
The result is a stellar lineup of dining (yes..dining) options that range from upscale versions of standard fan-food to healthy meals (we counted two quinoa sightings) that might just change the way we eat at sporting events.
The big, surprise news was the announcement that Michelle Bernstein's Crumb on Parchment would offer fine cafe dining on BankUnited Club Level's section 213. Chef Bernstein was on hand to serve up a sous vide free-range turkey sandwich on pretzel roll ($12); vegetarian sandwich on seedy grain bread ($12); and a kale and quinoa salad with green mangoes and chayote ($12). How will veggies and quinoa play with the football crowd? Bernstein says that at first she had some doubts, but she's gotten rave reviews from everyone who tries them. "The vegetable sandwich is surprisingly hearty. Besides, everyone needs to eat their veggies."
Sushi Maki, located at section 241, will offer a large selection of rolls including a California ($12); spicy tuna ($12); JB ($12); and a "Fins" roll, made with spicy salmon, avocado, and tempura flake, topped with salmon and finished with sweet mayo ($12).
Everglades BBQ rubs and smokes their pork at the stadium, then pulls the meat to top nachos ($10) and use in sandwiches ($10). Offerings are available at Gate E Plaza and sections 122; 156; 215; 243; 256; 410; and 443.
New for this year is the Taste of the NFL. A rotating lineup of offerings inspired by the visiting team's home turf. We sampled the lobster roll, which will be available at the September 7 game against the New England Patriots. Available at Sabor at sections 210 and 238.
BurgerFi offers their all-natural, hormone and antibiotic-free Angus beef burgers ($10), as well as a VegeFi burger, made with a quinoa and lentil patty ($9). Available at section 130.
Dolphins great Kim Bokamper's own sports bar and grill is represented at Sun Life with classic game food and lighter options. We sampled executive chef Jimmy Dean's bacon & blue cheese sliders and mac & cheese balls, but were most impressed with the fresh tuna wontons, given a kick with a drizzle of sriracha. Bokamper's is available at section 328, suite level.
Another "Fin" alum turned restaurateur, Bob "Bru" Brudzinski's Bru's Room takes his popular sports grill to the stadium with his famous Bru's wings ($10), tossed in hot Buffalo sauce or tangy barbecue sauce ($10). A side of curly fries makes the meal ($5). Bru's Room can be found at section 154.
A classic Cuban sandwich ($10), pressed with slow roasted mojo-seasoned pork, is available at Cuban Guys, located at section 425.
It's going to be a delicious season!