A vast mass of food swirls around the Super Bowl. Fortunately, this year the two teams left standing come from places with excellent culinary pedigrees (apologies to the Arizona Cardinals, but North Carolina barbecue is tough to argue with). But it’s not just Carolina ribs that stand out. All over the country, chefs and bartenders are whipping up dishes and cocktails in honor of this Sunday’s game. Here, some of the best.
1. The Nose Dive, Greenville, South Carolina
The Ham Newton features speck and Capicola hams with a homemade fig spread, bleu cheese and caramelized onions, served with a crusty baguette for stacking.
2. Bad Daddy’s, Various Locations
The Wham! Bam! Thank you, Cam (Newton)! burger features a 7-ounce patty topped with pulled pork, pepper jack cheese, onion straws and house-made apple-bacon barbecue sauce. “I love being a Charlotte-based chef and getting to create the Wham! Bam! Thank You, Cam! Burger is definitely the best way that I can show my support for the Panthers!” says Tim Kast, executive chef at Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar.
3. Oasthouse Gastropub, Austin, Texas
Peyton’s Pig Wings are a little larger in size than the wings you are used to, and they're packed with flavor. Oasthouse Gastropub uses slow-cooked pork shanks that are then seasoned, grilled to the perfect crisp-to-tender ratio and finished with a beer glaze.
4. Punch Bowl Social, Denver, Colorado
Punch Bowl Social has created a special punch to honor the hometown team as they head to the Super Bowl. The sharable punch called “Orange is the New Blue” features Old Forester bourbon, Domaine de Canton, lemon juice, apple butter, simple syrup and pear tea, and is garnished with orange slices and blueberries for an orange and blue color scheme.
5. Peck's Homemade, Brooklyn, NY
Peck’s Homemade makes a Bronco Chili Casserole with a blend of pork belly and beef. “This meaty goodness gets its deep flavor from our homemade chili paste. To make it more enticing, we top it with fried jalapeños, cheese, and cilantro!” says owner Theo Peck.
6. Cupcrazed, Fort Mill, South Carolina
Pantherfetti has been a thing at Cupcrazed since the bakery opened in 2010, but it really started taking off at the start of the 2015 Carolina Panthers season. The most popular? Pantherfetti cookies, cake pops and cupcakes, with homemade white or chocolate cake, buttercream frosting and, of course, Panther blue, black and white sprinkles.
7. Berryhill Baja Grill, Various Locations
There will be a battle of tacos at select locations of Berryhill Baja Grill. On one side will be the Tar Heel Taco—a salute to North Carolina’s famed barbecue, made with pulled barbecued pork in a tangy barbecue sauce, topped with creamy slaw and crispy onion strings. On the other side is the spicy Denver Omelet Taco made with fresh scrambled eggs, grilled onions, red and green peppers, diced ham and shredded sharp cheese. “The Tar Heel Taco was easy. North Carolina prides itself on pork barbecue. We went Lexington-style because it's closer to what Texans think of as barbecue. The Denver Omelet Taco is like a great breakfast taco, and everyone knows the Denver Omelet. With Colorado being in the news a lot about its marijuana laws, though, we considered calling it the Pot Luck Taco!" says Andrew Hradecky, executive chef of Berryhill Baja Grill in Houston.
8. Now Boarding, Los Angeles, CA
This Los Angeles craft cocktail destination has created a Super Bowl cocktail named after the Lombardi Trophy. Lombardi Ice Tea is a 1/2 ounce Bombay Dry Gin, 1/2 ounce Svedka Vodka, 1/2 ounce Bacardi light rum, 1/2 ounce Cointreau, 3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice, sugar and 3/4 ounce Mexican Coke from a bottle. It’s then shaken, strained into a Collins glass over crushed ice, and topped with a lemon twist. “Our play on a classic, it’s served long, but has plenty of kick, a refreshing zesty taste, and that much needed energy boost from the Coke to keep you going throughout what could be a 4 hour game!” says owner Steve Kelly.
9. Bill’s Bar & Burger, All Locations
A Bronco Burger, made of ground Colorado Bison topped with queso sauce, green chile and bacon relish and served with sweet potato fries, will be served at all Bill’s Bar & Burger locations, only on Super Bowl Sunday. “I grew up in Colorado and my family has had Broncos season tickets for over 40 years. To me, the burger tastes like home—it doesn’t get any better than this!” says executive chef Ivy Stark.
10. BLT Steak, Charlotte, NC
BLT Steak is offering a Super Bowl special with dueling burgers from the Panthers and the Broncos available for lunch, Monday February 1 through Sunday, February 7: The Panthers Carolina is a pulled pork sandwich with coleslaw and pickled onion on a brioche bun, and the Broncos Colorado burger comes with white cheddar, fried onions and horseradish sauce.
11. The Blue Bonnet, Denver, CO
This Denver landmark is Denver's Coach Kubiak's favorite spot. Coming to this restaurant and bar has been his post-playoff-game ritual; it’s where he loves to celebrate a win with family and coaching staff. Blue Bonnet's famous Kubiak's Guac is named after Coach Kubiak. “After the AFC Championship, the Denver Broncos coaching staff ate this guacamole. It is their absolute favorite and the perfect party snack,” says owner Marci Rosenberg.