As the Nationals and Marlins engaged in a slugfest on April 9, resulting in a 10-7 Nats win, the kosher food stand behind right field at Nationals Park was doing steady business.
Frank, a Columbia resident, ordered a kosher dog when he reached the front of
“I’m originally from Detroit, so I’m a Tigers fan,” he said. “So, except when the Tigers play [the Orioles] in Baltimore, I don’t really care which team I go to see.”
Dressed in a Nats shirt, Frank said his desire to have a hot dog outweighed his “slight preference” to see American League teams play — both the Orioles and the Tigers are in the American League, while the Nationals are in the National League.
“The best ballpark food is hot dogs,” Frank said. “Why shouldn’t everyone get one?”
Max’s Kosher Cafe and Catering provides the hot dogs at Nationals Park — as well as hamburgers, falafel and shawarma.
John and Sarah, from Silver Spring, said the kosher food is a pleasure.
“Nothing is better than being able to actually get a filling meal at a game,” said Sarah, 45, as she looked excitedly at her shawarma. She said the kosher stand beats stands at other ballparks where she has to pay more for vegetarian food that just isn’t filling.
John, 49, added that whenever they come to a Nationals game, they try to find tickets in section 141 so that they can be near the kosher stand.
“OK, so it’s a little more expensive. But that just encourages me not to have a beer,” he said. “Compared to other ballpark food, the prices really aren’t that awful” — $7 for a hot dog and $10 for the shawarma.
Other popular kosher-friendly vegetarian options at Nationals Park include Ben’s Chili Bowl’s vegetarian chili and Shake Shack’s veggie burger.
“The lines everywhere else are just ridiculous,” said Sarah. “At least at the kosher stand, I know I only have to miss a half inning because the line is usually not that bad.” John said they also enjoy waiting in the line at the kosher stand because they often run into people they know.
Claire, from Columbia Heights, isn’t Jewish, but she has a shawarma from the kosher stand at every game she goes to.
“I don’t know what they put in this stuff,” she said after savoring her first bite. “I can’t even pronounce it, but it’s really, really good. I have no idea what kosher means, but I’m thinking I might start doing it if this is what the food tastes like.”