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The meat of the line-up at Camden Yards: Gino's, Stuggy's and Dempsey's

Some home-grown heavy hitters are joining the line-up Oriole Park.

For the 20th Anniversary season at Camden Yards, the Orioles and its second-year concessionaire, Delaware North Companies Sportservice, have powered up the local presence at the yard. The new 3-4-5 hitters are Gino's Burgers and Chicken, Stuggy's and Dempsey's Brew Pub and Restaurant, named for and partly owned by Rick Dempsey.

Word that Gino's Burgers and Chicken was coming to the Oriole Park leaked out in January. But the news about the addition of Stuggy's, a maker of specialty sausage and hot dogs based in Fells Point, has been simmerlingly quietly in management's steam pan. And although there had been word of a new brew-pub moving into the Camden Yard warehouse, fans are only learning Monday that the joint will be named for the lovable longtime Oriole Rick Dempsey.

The Orioles previewed these and other details about the new concessions to a Baltimore Sun reporter in advance of Monday's online publication of its A-to-Z Guide.

The modern day Gino's Burgers and Chicken is the sequel to a beloved  Baltimore-born burger franchise named for a Baltimore Colts legend. Dempsey, the 1983 World Series MVP, has been a Baltimore fan favorite in various roles since joining the Orioles in 1976 as part of 10-player trade. Relative newcomer Stuggy's was opened in the spring of 2010 by Baltimoreans Ryan and Stuart Perlberg. The Balto-centric additions are part of the Oriole management's stated desire to "bring Baltimore to the ballpark."

The new food options are one part of a 20th-anniversary Camden Yards facelift that also includes improved views from the Flag Court and a newly designed gathering area beyond centerfield.

Fans entering through Gate H -- the popular Eutaw Street entrance -- will see a major renovation off to the right only a few steps inside. A forgettable french fry stand has been rebuilt into the double-wide concession that will house the park's only locations for both Gino's and Stuggy's.

And on top of this structure, there is the brand new Roof Deck, a covered bar area that will be open to all Oriole Park ticket-holders. Variations of the Roof Deck have become popular mixing areas in other stadiums, especially for restless fans who want to keep half an eye on the game as they move around the park. The view of the field from the Roof Deck, which is adjacent to the Center Field scoreboard, are splendid.

The warehouse space that forever was the Bud Light Warehouse Bar is now Dempsey's Brew Pub and Restaurant, which will feature Chesapeake regional cuisine. Dempsey's, which extends also into a warehouse space formerly used for private hospitality, will seat 150 in its dining room, 100 in the bar area and an additional 80 at outside tables.

The plan is for Dempsey's to be a seven-day restaurant that will serve lunch and dinner not only on game days but on off days, too, and throughout the year. 

Dempsey's opening roster of beers, which will be brewed on premises, include Wild Pitch Wheat, Pine Tar Stout, Rick's Red Ale and -- how could they resist -- Rain Delay IPA, according to Camden Yard's food and beverage director Adrian Sedano. The bar at Dempsey's is scheduled to be open on April 6. The dining menu and house-brewed beers will may be ready for the second homestand, Sedano said.

Oriole Park's executive chef Joshua Distenfeld said that while Dempsey's will be family-focused, "the quality will make it upscale." On the menu: beer-battered haddock, beer-steamed mussels with Roma's Natty Boh brats, and Eutaw Street Sliders, beef and crabcake combos dressed with a stone-ground mustard made from one of Dempsey's home brews.

The push to bring Baltimore cuisine inside Oriole Park began last season, the first at Oriole Park for the Buffalo, New York-based Delaware North. First-year additions included -- in addition to new Baltimore-inspired cuisine throughout the park -- the Natty Boh Bar, Polock Johnny's sausage stands and seafood stands branded with the yellow-and-blue Old Bay logo.

"I am excited and proud of the new restaurant opening on Eutaw Street at Camden Yards," Dempsey said in an emailed statement. "It will serve as a constant celebration of the many players that have been a part of the Orioles’ great history.  I am extremely appreciative to the Orioles and Delaware North Sportservice who have given me the opportunity to be involved in Dempsey’s Brew Pub and Restaurant. I am confident that Dempsey’s will help make Oriole Park a year-round destination with its high-end cuisine, variety of microbrews and the ideal ambiance to celebrate with friends."

 

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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