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Bill of Fare: Take me out to (eat at) the ballgame

Von Hanson’s Sausage Haus serves only stuffed brats with comical names like Garrison Squealer (stuffed with bacon, wild rice and cheese) or the Brat Favre (stuffed with jalapeno and cheddar). (Staff photo: Bill Klotz)

Von Hanson’s Sausage Haus serves only stuffed brats with comical names like Garrison Squealer (stuffed with bacon, wild rice and cheese) or the Brat Favre (stuffed with jalapeno and cheddar). (Staff photo: Bill Klotz)

Editor’s note: Bill of Fare is a feature on St. Paul dining that runs on the first and third Thursday of each month. Capitol Report is building an online dining guide, which is available here.

Although the old St. Paul Saints stadium will always have a special place in fans’ hearts, there’s no denying that CHS Field is a significant upgrade, especially given its prime Lowertown location. As part of that next-level experience, the Saints have been revamping their concessions since opening last year.

This season, they introduced a range of new selections while still keeping the menu fairly heavy on the burgers-and-dogs stadium fare. But, happily, many of the new choices include a tasty twist on old favorites. For example, fresh kimchi — a blend of fermented vegetables that’s high on the spicy scale — is showcased both on a hot dog and on the Dragon Burger, which also has bacon strips to balance out the flavors.

You can also go more traditional with the Lowertown Burger, which has onion rings wedged atop the patty, or the corn dog on a stick, perfect for eating while watching the game. What’s not so easy is the boneless beef short ribs, served with baked beans: Most likely, this is geared toward those with good balance or a high tolerance for potential spills.

For a wider selection of options, consider the many restaurants of Lowertown. The area is rich with choices, and many fans choose to grab a bite before a game and follow it up with some snacks and dessert items at CHS Field.

Some notable standouts for outside the stadium are Big River Pizza, which serves breakfast pizzas along with its more traditional pizzas, and Saint Dinette, a neighborhood standout that serves up some upscale and swoon-worthy dishes. Then there’s Handsome Hog, specializing in mouth-watering and pig-centric Southern food and cocktails.

Whether dining on burgers while watching the Saints or grabbing a bite before heading into CHS Field, you’ll find that Lowertown’s stadium and its neighbors will likely give you something to cheer about.

HANDSOME HOG

203 E. Sixth St., St. Paul

651-340-7710

Cuisine: American Southern

Two most popular dishes: Chicken & waffles, baby back ribs

Cost range: $8-$27

Hours: Monday-Thursday 11 a.m.-midnight, Friday 11 a.m.-1 a.m., Saturday 2 p.m.-1 a.m.

Delivery service? No

 

BIG RIVER PIZZA

280 E. Fifth St., St. Paul

651-683-2186

Cuisine: American

Two most popular dishes: Breakfast pizza, the Al Franken pizza

Cost range: $7-$25

Hours: Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-8 p.m.

Delivery service? No

 

SAINT DINETTE

261 E. Fifth St., St. Paul

651-800-1415

Cuisine: American

Two most popular dishes: Ceviche, smoked trout

Cost range: $6-$22

Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 5 p.m.-10 p.m., Friday 5 p.m.-11 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-11 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-9 p.m.

Delivery service? No

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