MLB brings FoodFest to London

Major League Baseball (MLB) has announced it will take its FoodFest concept outside the United States for the first time, with London to play host to an event next month.

Taking place at Hawker House in the English capital from October 5-6, the FoodFest is designed to build on the success of this year’s first regular season games in Europe.

The two games at London Stadium between the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox on June 29-30 drew a total attendance of 118,718. The Chicago Cubs and St. Louis Cardinals will play the second iteration of the London Series at London Stadium on June 13-14, 2020.

Next month’s event will be MLB’s fourth FoodFest, following two in New York and one in Los Angeles earlier this year to start the 2019 season. The FoodFest is designed to showcase the array of food options on offer at MLB ballparks, with London’s event to feature food from 10 stadia.

Competition at ballpark concession stands has become intense with teams trying to bring the best one-of-a-kind offerings to their fans. Many clubs collaborate with acclaimed chefs to create exclusive culinary options to make their ballpark experience distinctive and memorable.

London’s FoodFest will feature classics including Smoked Pork Belly Bun Bao Buns from the Los Angeles Dodgers, Arizona Diamondbacks Churro Dogs and a vegan option from Seattle Mariners. To celebrate the London Series there will be Hot Lobster Rolls from the Red Sox and Yankee Dingers from the Yankees. Looking ahead to the 2020 series there will be Cardinals Chicken Nachos and the Cubs’ Chicago Dog.

In honour of the MLB postseason, there will be the Atlanta Braves Dagwood Grilled Cheese, Houston Astros Frito Dog and the Cleveland Indians Fat Rooster Chicken Sandwich. Vegan and vegetarian variations will be available.

There will be two sessions on each day of the FoodFest, 12pm to 5pm and 6pm to 11pm. Tickets for each session will be priced at £8 (€9/$10) each with children under the age of eight getting in for free.

In addition to the food options there will also be televisions showing a mix of live and rebroadcast postseason games, batting cages and an MLB merchandise shop.

Barbara McHugh, senior vice-president of marketing at MLB, said: “We really wanted to create a new fan experience – one that was geared towards a younger generation. This particular event creates a social-first experience that is both immersive and interactive. Hosting FoodFest in London allows fans in the United Kingdom to continue to engage with MLB after the success of the London Series 2019 and to acknowledge an exciting time in our calendar – the postseason.”