Saturday, May 28, 2011

Ben’s Chili… Bowl?

One great thing about going to a ball game is enjoying the ballpark food. In Washington, D.C., Nationals Stadium does a great thing by inviting local D.C. restaurants to serve their food inside the venue. My personal favorite is Ben’s Chili Bowl. You would be hard pressed to find a real Washingtonian who doesn’t know about the original. Located on U Street, this late night chow spot is known for its chili and half-smokes. Their menu at the ballpark serves the highlights.

Like many games I had Ben’s and opted for a bowl of chili. I have to say, the taste lives up to the reputation. It’s not overloaded with beans, not drowned in Tabasco and has some seriously delicious meat.

There was just one problem. Ben’s chili needed a decent bowl.

All good food bloggers know that eating is about the whole experience and a flimsy easy to spill paper plate just didn’t cut it. Something with a lid would have been better.

I spy a friendly bowl!
So I did some research. Apparently Hard Times Café, another local restaurant with a food station in the park, also serves chili and definitely got the bowl thing right.

This really is a lesson for all vendors out there. You may be serving a cheap and delicious dish, but presentation still matters. Speaking from my own experience, I’d like to get the food into my mouth, not down the front of my shirt.

Last but not least, eaters! Top Chef DC had a great episode where contestants had to create a ballpark dish at Nationals Stadium. It's a juicy one. Check it out!


  1. The thing I love most about Ben's is it's open super late! I always drive by around 1am and just love smelling the chili in the air haha.

  2. So true! That smell is pure delight.

  3. This is the first friendly welcoming blog I have seen. The topic FOOD YEA. The crab grabbed me right away. Looking forward to keep with this inviting blog. hew

  4. Thanks for the nice comment HEW!