The USTA and Levy Restaurants, the official restaurant partner of the U.S. Open, have announced the official menu and expanded culinary offerings at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center for the 2011 U.S. Open, set for Aug. 29-Sept. 11. With a menu that reflects the international flair of the event, the U.S. Open showcases flavors from around the world and utilizes ingredients from around the region.
The world’s highest-attended annual sporting event, the U.S. Open will attract more than 700,000 fans over the course of the 20-day event. Overseeing all culinary efforts is Levy Restaurants Regional Chef Jim Abbey, who will have a 250-person culinary staff to serve guests at 60 concession stands, five restaurants, 100 luxury suites and the Player’s Lounge.
An event that draws tennis aficionados from all over the world, the U.S. Open menu will continue to feature fresh, inventive cuisine. This year, the use of locally-sourced ingredients expands, with more than 35 percent of all produce sourced from the region.
Culinary highlights for the 2011 U.S. Open include:
Food Village, South Plaza Cafe & Heineken Light Lounge
►Global Flavor: Patrons visiting the Food Village, the primary concessions area, can take a culinary trip around the world. New Asian flavors have been added to the mix for 2011 with dishes ranging from Szechwan chicken stir fry and sweet and sour pork to spicy beef stir fry and vegetable fried rice. The popular crepe stand returns with sweet and savory crepes including La Poulet made with marinated chicken, spinach, mozzarella cheese, and mushroom, and Un Plasir, made with fresh strawberries and Nutella. New Delhi Spice dishes up Indian flavors including samosas and the new shrimp kati roll. Additional international flavors returning this year include sushi, Fresca Mexicana, and Italian specialties at Pizza Pasta.
►Signature Concessions: The Signature Lobster Roll at Fulton’s Seafood Stand in Food Village remains a U.S. Open staple. Served on a split-top bun seared in butter, the roll is filled with chunks of Maine lobster, celery and Louis dressing made in house with chili sauce, ketchup, tarragon and scallions. Another U.S. Open favorite–the half-pound hamburgers at the Burger-Burger stand in the Food Village. These signature half-pound, custom, La Frieda-blend hamburgers are served on a brioche-style bun baked daily by a New York bakery.
►South Plaza Cafe: The Cafe features three types of panini, quesadillas made to order, salads and fresh fruit ideal for grabbing en route to a match. The Cafe has also added gluten-free snacks and Red Bridge Beer, brewed without wheat.
►Heineken Light Lounge: The Belgian waffle takes center stage with sweet and savory treats including a waffle with Nutella hazelnut sauce and the Belgian waffle club sandwich made with maple-glazed turkey, hickory smoked bacon, lettuce and tomato served between two waffles.
Moet Champagne Bar
A new sponsorship with Moët brings champagne to the US Open and a range of Moët offerings including Moët & Chandon Rose Imperial, Moët & Chandon Grand Vintage and even the new Moët Ice Imperial, the first champagne created to be enjoyed over ice. Guests can enjoy most of the vintages in the bars and restaurants throughout the U.S. Open, but the only place to find the Ice Imperial is at the new champagne bar near food village and adjacent to Mojito Restaurant.
Wine Bar Food
James Beard Award-winning Chef Tony Mantuano returns offering a wine bar atmosphere in the South Plaza and on the Club Level of Arthur Ashe Stadium. Featuring Mediterranean small plates and wine pairings from his Wine Bar Food cookbook, signature dishes include the flaming ouzo shrimp, tomato bread and a mozzarella plate.
The Honey Deuce is the signature drink of the U.S. Open and more than 60,000 were sold in 2010. The drink is a blend of GREY GOOSE Vodka, a touch of raspberry liqueur, lemonade and honeydew melon “tennis” balls, served in a U.S. Open commemorative glass which lists past U.S. Open winners.
►ACES (Club Level): The premier dining destination on the grounds, ACES is known for its sophisticated seafood menu. Chef Masaharu Morimoto returns this year to prepare all the sushi and sashimi. Other stand-out dishes include the Plateau Royal – a tower of chilled seafood, chilled corn and lemongrass soup made with local corn and served with jumbo lump crab and cilantro, and the seared sea scallops with a local arugula and grapefruit salad, shaved fennel and citrus emulsion.
►Champions Bar & Grill (Club Level): This classic steakhouse offers premium cuts of meat and seafood including Creekstone Farm’s angus beef and cedar plank salmon.
►Mojito Restaurant and Bar (Arthur Ashe Stadium ground floor): Open to all guests and often an evening meeting spot, Mojito focuses on Latin specialties and festive libations. Snack on the smoked pork bocaditos with sweet plantains, black beans and cilantro cream or diablo shrimp and scallop ceviche with orange, lime, chile and tomato. Seasonal mojitos, sangria and outdoor seating make this an ideal between- and post-match spot.
►Patio Café & Bar (outside the U.S. Open Club): This relaxing spot under the blue umbrellas is a favorite for many and this year is expanded to include a larger bar area. The tree-lined Café features a casual menu of chop salad, burgers and sandwiches as well as refreshing specialty cocktails.
When the top athletes in tennis descend on the U.S. Open they need sustenance to fuel their game. Levy Restaurants’ chefs offer plenty of lean protein and complex carbohydrates, along with a range of options to appeal to the international palates of today’s tennis stars. Most popular are the made-to-order pasta bar, baked potato bar, grilled chicken, brown rice and smoothies. Sushi is also popular, and this year it will be prepared by Chef Morimoto. Given the surge in tennis players adopting a gluten-free diet, Chef Abbey is expanding the gluten-free choices available to players.
►Green Efforts: Lessening environmental impact is a major focus for the USTA and Levy Restaurants. Guests will notice that service ware is made from recyclable, biodegradable or compostable materials and more than 500 recycling bins are placed throughout the grounds. Levy Restaurants is also composting at all kitchens, and the cooking oil recycling program continues, converting oil into clean-burning, renewable biodiesel fuel.
►City Harvest Donation: The USTA and Levy Restaurants will donate unused food to City Harvest, which delivers rescued food to soup kitchens and food pantries across the five boroughs. Last year, more than 25,000 pounds of food were donated, and City Harvest has collected more than 275,000 pounds of food from the U.S. Open since 1998.