A Taste of Spring Training

By local contributor
Kerrick James

Arizona's Cactus League burst to life in postwar 1947, when the Valley of the Sun became a much-desired home for big-league players to tune up their swings for the regular season. Fifteen major league teams now play in Arizona's spring showcase, and Scottsdale is home to three of them: The San Francisco Giants, Colorado Rockies, and Arizona Diamondbacks. Plan ahead and you can enjoy every Cactus League team without driving the entire Valley, as they play against Scottsdale's NL West trio.

Scottsdale Stadium, the spring training home of the San Francisco Giants, boasts a convenient downtown location, Camelback Mountain views from the lawn, and a hip, cosmopolitan vibe

Just up the street, Salt River Fields hosts the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies. A relatively new kid on the block, this stadium boasts spacious public areas, stunning mountain views and nary a bad seat in the house.

But one thing both ballparks have in common is creative ballpark cuisine. Sure, you'll find the usual suspects, but check out these tasty game-day changeups:

 


WOK FRIED SOBA NOODLES


At Scottsdale Stadium, try the Wok Fried Soba Noodles with Teriyaki Chicken. Heavy on the veggies and quite savory, these may balance the treat you really want – Garlic Fries, a San Francisco tradition. Wash down this (semi-) healthy repast with an icy Anchor Steam beer. 

 


SALTY'S BEACH HOUSE NACHOS


At Salt River Fields, you can go savory with Salty's Beach House Nachos (sea salt corn chips with melted queso, jalapeños, sour cream and choice of grilled chicken or beef) or their Taco Bar. Get two street-tacos — your choice of chicken, fish, or steak — dressed by you with fresh chopped veggies and salsa.

 


TALKING STICK DOG


And if you're in "go big or go home" mode, step up to the Talking Stick Dog. This outlandish creation is the Titanic of ballpark dogs, a 12"x1.5" quality kosher dog in a stretched bun, covered in pulled pork and fresh mac 'n' cheese swirls. Two adults could easily fill up on it, but mere kids devour these 30 to 40 times per day in the spring (it helps to have a hollow leg!)