Fenway to Serve House-Smoked Franks with Locally Made "Catsup"

March 31, 2016

After a management shakeup, Sox fans can count on a winning culinary team this season.

Catherine Smart
Fenway to Serve House-Smoked Franks with Locally Made "Catsup" | WGBH | Craving Boston

In an effort to keep up with the city's cutting edge food scene, Fenway Park has ditched its longtime supplier of franks, in favor of hiring a flock of bearded ex- Brooklynites to curate the park's new hot-dog program. "You can be sure we checked these guys out good," says Pat O'Brien, the stadiums new culinary director, "Every one of em’ is a Mets fan."

As part of the initiative, the park will unveil it's most exciting new import, — no, not David Price — a massive wood-fired sausage smoker, commissioned from a master welder in Vienna, Austria.

"Look, guys like Tony Maws and Jamie Bissonnette might think they've got this nose-to-tail thing on lock, but wee-ya doin' some wicked, frickin’ awesome stuff behind The Green Monsta’, bro," says O'Brien, through a thick accent suggesting he was raised in a triple-decker filled part of town formerly run by Whitey Bulger & Co. that's now teeming with young hipster families, and pour-over coffee places.

Doug Clement, the park's head of operations, emphasizes O'Brien was a strategic hire, "We knew he would bring a real sense of place to our ambitious artisanal meats menu.”  Clement points to O’Brien’s strong culinary background — having spent time in the kitchens of Boston-bred heavyweights like Barbara Lynch and Jeremy Sewall — as strong assets. But, Clement says, his restaurant pedigree wasn’t the only reason he got the job. “He is comfortable enough in his own skin to show up at work with a large Dunks' iced coffee, extra, extra….real salt of the earth this guy."

The $18 dog — which debuts opening day, and will only be available between the bottom of the 5th and the 7th inning stretch — can be procured by screaming and waving wildly at vendors running up and down the stands, and praying no one in your row drops the damn thing as it's pawed and passed your way. "We want our service to be every bit as memorable as the food," says Clement. 

O'Brien is confident that if the charcuterie itself doesn't win you over, the baked-on-premises-daily, poppyseed-studded brioche bun, and optional probiotic-packed, lacto-fermented pickled onions definitely will. The Fenway food czar offers up a pro tip: “Just shell out $7.75 for a foamy Bud Light, and you’ve got yourself a perfect pairin’.”

The culinary director couldn't comment on whether the available mustard would be stone-ground in state, but he was quoted as saying "it sure as [expletive] won't be Ballpark brand.” He also wanted to state, for the record, "Go Sox."

(April Fool's! From the sports and food fans here at Craving Boston.)

  • March 31, 2016