Food: Sonoma Stompers game tasting better than ever

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Arnold Field, or “Stompers Field” during the team’s baseball season, is not the first place you would expect to find good food worth the trip.

Most of us have experienced finger-handled cold burgers and hot dogs at small town athletic fields.

But team owner Jon Sebastiani and Palooza Gastro Pub & Wine Bar of Kenwood have set a new standard right here in Sonoma.

When the I-T asked fans in the stands what they thought of the food at a game last week, they all spoke quickly about their favorites, which ranged from the kale salad to the giant bacon and brie burger.

On the menu you will find appetizers such as hummus and pita chips; fries that come as normal French, with garlic, truffles or farmers style; pretzel bites with garlic aioli and Brussels sprouts with garlic aioli ($6 to $9). Or try the Caesar or kale salads or wood-fired oysters Rockefeller, pesto barbecue or raw.

Palooza owners Suzette and Jeff Tyler started their food careers in the Valley with a Chicago-style hot dog cart and still sell those as all-beef Vienna hot dogs at the games.

The Chicago-style all-beef Vienna hot dog, is popular along with a veggie hot dog and a Kenwood Dog with pinot noir mushrooms, a poppy seed bun and mushroom aioli. Then there are the shrimp corn dogs, meaning a load of shrimp on a stick, deep fried with Cajon aioli; a classic burger with cheddar, a bacon and brie burger, blue cheese and bacon burger and the piece de resistance – a Maine Lobster Roll, full of delish lobster salad, in a roll baked by Les Pascals Patisserie in Glen Ellen. ($7 to $17).

The wines served are all Leese-Fitch wines ($8) from August Sebastiani’s 3 Badge Beverage Company, as well as his Gus the Bus IPA and other Sonoma County craft beers. You can also get water, sodas, Barking Dog Roasters coffee, Guayaki Yerba Mate and Aquakolas.

At another booth you can purchase beer and Mary’s Pizza Shack cheese or pepperoni pizza slices. Some guests in the “wine garden” said they were sorry they couldn’t get “real baseball food,” such as popcorn and nachos. Maybe in the future. Or in the past.

It’s almost worth it to do as many people do – buy a ticket to the game and go for dinner. Or you can go to their Kenwood restaurant. Palooza Gastropub & Wine Bar, 8910 Sonoma Highway, Kenwood. 833-4000.

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