The 5 Best Things To Eat At Madison Square Garden
Pastrami, fries, barbecue, and more.
When you imagine yourself watching a game at Madison Square Garden, you probably also imagine chicken tenders and fries. Maybe this daydream involves soft serve with rainbow sprinkles and a big cup of beer as well. We don’t want to be rude, but there’s a whole universe of food you’re missing out on in favor of your 101 approach to sports snacking. The next time you go to this iconic and probably haunted building on 33rd Street, expand your horizons. These are our five favorite things to eat at MSG.
What To Order: Chicken Tenders & Fries
We find it hard to watch athletes exerting themselves without shoving a pallet of chicken tenders down our throats. (Or “tendies,” if you want to be official about it.) The difference between these MSG chicken tenders and the chicken tenders of your past is that these come with a packet of Mike’s Hot Honey. Crispy, sweet, and a little spicy at the end—this is the ideal order if you’re looking for something classic. A bonus tip: French fries with Mike’s Hot Honey taste a little like waffles–in a nice way.
What To Order: Pastrami On Rye
You’ve probably heard of Carnegie Deli, the famous Jewish spot in Midtown that opened in 1937 and closed in 2016. Well, Madison Square Garden is now home to Carnegie Deli’s only operating location, and all the recipes and sourcing methods are the same as they were at the original. Get a mound of lean pastrami stacked between slices of rye bread with a couple of snappy dill pickles on the side. This thing comes with its own Carnegie Deli flag, which means you won't have to explain to your seat neighbors where you procured it. Because you know they’re going to ask.
What To Order: Sweet Potato Tempura Fries
There’s no feeling quite like biting into a crunchy tempura batter. Every edge of these sweet potato fries crisps up so that the fries are soft in the middle and crackly on the outside. Kobeyaki’s sweet potato tempura fries stay surprisingly fresh for a long time—so if you want to take a break and put them under your seat for 15 minutes, you won’t come back to sad, wilted potato sticks. Also, each order comes with spicy mayo and teriyaki ketchup. Our advice is to double dip and mix the two flavors together. They’re your fries. You make the double dipping rules.
What To Order: Burnt Ends Sandwich
Mighty Quinn’s has a couple locations around the city, but none of them come with a Rangers or Knicks game on the side. There are a bunch of good BBQ options at this MSG vendor, but if you’re only getting one thing, make it the burnt ends sandwich. The cubed burnt ends are smoky and tender, and there’s a generous amount of pickled fresno chilies to give the whole thing some bite, with cucumber slices to cool everything down.
What To Order: Spicy Chicken Sandwich
Fuku isn't exactly new to sports arenas, but this Momofuku spot still makes incredible fried chicken sandwiches. Our favorite is the spicy chicken version, which has so much gochugaru that you can spot the red flakes in the mayo-based sauce. This is a genuinely spicy sandwich, so if you like heat and crunchy pieces of chicken, you’ll love this.
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