Serious sports fans may roll their eyes, but food lovers have been known to attend sports matches just for the courtside snacks. (And chances are, if you clicked on this article, you’re one of them. Just embrace it.) There is something charming about attending a game, knowing you can get in on that stadium food fare and indulge while you cheer your heart out for your team.
When we think baseball, we think hot dogs. We think football, we think buffalo wings. We think hockey, we think nachos. And of course, when we think any game, we think beer. These games wouldn’t be the same without the fare to match the atmosphere and bring out what makes going to games and events so much fun.
But it seems that sports snacks don’t stop at the usual, go-to stadium foods. Going to a game overseas — even going to a game Stateside — can be a culinary and cultural lesson in itself. There is something that just seems very out of place about sitting beside another fan who is eating sushi while wildly cheering and rooting for his team.
It’s true: Stadiums around the world go beyond — and we mean way beyond — our definition of typical game day food.
Around the world, spectators munch on everything from spicy kimchi to dried fish meat while watching athletes battle it out on the field. And whether the idea of fried octopus makes you want to shell out some Japanese yen or hurl, there’s no denying: sports and snack food are two things all cultures have in common.
Just keep that heartwarming fact in mind while you scroll through some of the weirder snacks in the following slideshow.
No joke: People across Taiwan willingly shell out cash for a snack with the word “stinky” in the title. At Taipei’sXinzhuang Field, the food’s putrid smell wafts through the air meters away from the stands that sell it. Cooks first soften the tofu with brine made from fermented milk, then top it with pickled vegetables. Add-ons can be anything from solidified duck blood to intestines.
Denmark’s national stadium offers a refreshing, if expensive, change of pace. The stadium hosts Geranium, the only soccer-stadium restaurant to have earned a Michelin star. Food lovers across Copenhagen know Geranium for its high-quality New Nordic cuisine — perhaps fitting, given that the city is also home to Noma. The restaurant also boasts views over the city’s Fælledparken gardens. Different from chips and beer, much?