Andrew Zimmern will curate Vikings stadium food offerings

Zimmern goat burger Stephanie A. Meyer x550.jpg
Stephanie A. Meyer
Andrew Zimmern poses with his cabrito burger
Not only will the new Vikings stadium be a dazzling sight to behold, it will also offer superior stadium fare. Food vendor behemoth Aramark has partnered with Andrew Zimmern to create an inspired menu for fans interested in more than heat-lamped hot dogs and ersatz nacho cheese.

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AZ_Canteen_Green_Papaya_550.jpg
Joy Summers
AZ Canteen's Green Papaya salad with egg

"[Aramark] is the Rolls Royce of [food vending] companies," says the James Beard Award-winning television personality and chef. "It's part of a larger move for me to get back to what I really love, which is feeding people."

Traditionalists can relax: The new stadium is going to have frankfurters, just not the questionably sourced, mystery meat ones that have tarnished the brand. "We've got a killer hot dog," says Zimmern, a vocal fan of the finer tubed meats. He has teamed with celebrity butcher Pat LaFrieda to produce a line of tasty sausages, including a hot dog.

Fans can also expect to find the sort of chef-driven, stands-friendly dishes we've come to expect from Zimmern's food truck, AZ Canteen. Imagine celebrating touchdowns by chowing down on the cabrito burger, made with goat meat, roasted tomatoes, and caramelized onions, or relaxing at halftime with a beautiful green papaya salad.

"It's a state-of-the-art facility that will be filled with the coolest food products of any stadium, anywhere," says Zimmern, who will curate a food court in addition to helping create the menu for inside the suites.

Sports fans won't have to wait until the Vikings stadium is finished in 2016 to get their paws on some of Zimmern's culinary creations, however. His deal with Aramark not only includes working on several concepts inside the stadium, but also involves serving food when the Vikings take up residence inside TCF Stadium. Whether that partnership will continue after the Vikings leave or if it involves serving food while the Gophers are playing, Zimmern couldn't say. But we do know that when the Twins return to Target Field, so will the AZ Canteen concept, straight from his food truck of the same name. 

"We will be greatly expanding our beverage and food items," Zimmern says. How exactly? That announcement will come soon from Target Field as they ramp up for the season.

All this talk made us wonder when we could expect to see the bright yellow AZ Canteen truck on the streets again. We reached out to Zimmern's business partner and president of the Minnesota Food Truck Association, John C. Levy. "Early to mid-April," Levy says, "depending on how the weather is doing." If you don't want to buy a Twins ticket just to get your hands on a Zimmern-approved frank, Levy assured us the truck itself will feature a "monster hot dog" this spring. We know what we're ordering first.

With all these irons in the fire, Zimmern is nevertheless planning to keep his television presence in high gear. "I'll still be doing the TV thing 10 years down the line," he says. "[But] I'm thrilled to get back into cooking. I've always believed in growing where you're planted."

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41 comments
Jamie Grimm
Jamie Grimm

I hope they have somebody doing fast and easy financing so people get get a loan to pay for their meal.

Mona Seimon
Mona Seimon

Andrew Zimmern is old news. And, he is annoying. Gross.

Jon Arnett
Jon Arnett

At least the food will not let you down...

George Adam
George Adam

Why not pretend the spectacle deserves more than the usual awfulness.

Austen Patrick Carey
Austen Patrick Carey

Awful food for $12 a burger? No thanks. There are better chefs out there than AZ.

Jake Wood
Jake Wood

You want 5 better chefs huh Eric Shawn Smith??? MARTIN BIXBY. STEVE DAVIDSON. DAVE THOMAS. WENDY MCQUINN. AL BORELAND... I. Dare. You to try and contest there skills...

Jill Remer
Jill Remer

It hurts to decipher your awful spelling and grammar.

John Bunch
John Bunch

I hate the word curate and how it is used today. It used to be used only for things like museums. Now if you make a hamburger, you are "curating" it.

Christian Abrahamson
Christian Abrahamson

I got a burger from his food truck once and it was the most well done burger I've ever had. Threw most of it away.

Craig Kent
Craig Kent

Songbird stew when they fly into the windows. Thanks Vikings. Don't want to ruin the aesthetics of the building do we? Wait I'm getting off topic. Andrew Zimmern is great. I've only eaten from AZ Andrew Zimmern's Canteen but it was real good.

James Schwantes
James Schwantes

I agree with Jake Wood!!!! And Cathy bailey!!! I have had his food and of course its not the greatest. So many other far better chefs/cooks in Minnesota!

Dan Mason
Dan Mason

Jake, I take it you didn't read the article? Too many words?

Eric Shawn Smith
Eric Shawn Smith

Jake Wood please name 5 chefs you know that are SO MUCH BETTER than AZ.

Jake Wood
Jake Wood

Andrew Zimmerman is. not. cool. I wish minnesotians would forget about him. the only reason his opinion matters is cause he's from st paul or whatever. I know SO. MANY. better cooks then him. plus noone gives a crap about stadium food its the most unhealthy CRAP ever! people need to grow up and eat healthy if Andrew Zimmerman was a real cook he. would. know. that!

Cathy Bailey
Cathy Bailey

No shit' that's just what I was thinking, lol

Jeff Skinner
Jeff Skinner

French fried eyeballs and greazy, grimy gopher guts sounds delicious.

Briana Pistolita Triviski
Briana Pistolita Triviski

Zimmerman is a hack. The man eats bull penis for a living and his food truck is terrible. Let him be in charge of a vending machine and call it a day.

Nathaniel Hodne
Nathaniel Hodne

So we won't be able to smoke but you can hopefully get a heart attack from the food..lame.

Alan Wiegand
Alan Wiegand

Everything will be overpriced.. Could afford shit at the dome....

Lynne Rollins
Lynne Rollins

Oooh! Meal worm sliders with carmelized beetles!

Brent Goodell
Brent Goodell

Agree with the overpriced and mediocre comments

Christian Abrahamson
Christian Abrahamson

His food truck served me the most well done hamburger I've ever had. No thanks.

Jennifer Bozich
Jennifer Bozich

There's always hot dogs. We all know what those really are, right?

Francisco Gonzalez
Francisco Gonzalez

Can't wait to try the warthog intestine sandwich or the tarantula on a stick! :-)

Marty Cudo
Marty Cudo

Food'll? How about some grammatical integrity?

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