Wednesday, Oct. 23, at Fenway Park the Cardinals and Red Sox will face off in the World Series for the fourth time. These two "best teams" have a long history, and the story of their confrontations makes for interesting reading. Their identical records this season make the championship games even more exciting.
Even though both teams have been to the championship playoffs since to face other opponents, who can forget their record-setting 4-0 games of 2004 that ended the Red Sox 86-year dry spell? No matter which team you support this year, you might want to remember that both of the previous matches between these two, in 1946 and 1967, went the full seven games, and resulted in Cardinals 4-3 victories over Boston.
If you're planning a get-together with friends for this evening's opening pitch at 7:07 p.m. Central Time, you might want to give a nod to tradition -- with a bit of a twist -- and simply serve all-American favorite foods, so that everyone can concentrate on the game.
It is said that the hot dog bun was introduced at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair, along with waffle cones, cotton candy, iced tea and hamburgers. Does that give you ideas for a menu?
We're not suggesting you serve cotton candy at your game party, but there's not much that's more traditional for a baseball evening than hot dogs. There is a reason to keep it simple, however, and what could be easier or more appealing than a ballpark buffet, with a thoroughly modern twist?
One innovative Pinterest board offers variations on standard burgers and franks. They're worth checking out for new taste treats. Options go far beyond choices of mustards, and there are many more possible additions than onion, pickle and tomato, or kraut, chile and cheese. Your game night ballpark franks may not be gourmet, but they can be creative, flavorful and individual. Make it interesting; make it memorable.
To celebrate the other team this year, add Boston Baked Beans; serve potato salad if you wish, some chips and snacks -- or fresh, buttered popcorn, and your favorite brew in addition to iced tea or apple cider. The game menu is complete.
Then, for the traditional seventh inning stretch, how about another buffet? Serve ice cream with choice of toppings, and some Cracker Jack crunch for a cool treat no one will refuse.
You may be planning to meet friends at a public place for at least some of the games, but when you're in the comfort of a private home, be sure to keep the food choices simple. Keep your eye on the ball; cheer for your favorite team, and know that for at least four games, you are watching the best of the best play America's favorite sport.