Plus a peek at what host Levi’s Stadium’s signature Bay Area-inspired dishes and the Clemson-Alabama matchup.

By Adam Campbell-Schmitt
January 03, 2019
Icon Sportswire/Getty Images

On January 7, two NCAA teams will face off in the final showdown of the 2018 college football season at the College Football Playoff National Championship Game: The SEC West champion Alabama Crimson Tide and the ACC Atlantic first place-finishing Clemson Tigers. While Clemson is considered the “away” team, both teams will travel to Santa Clara, CA to duke it out in Levi’s Stadium on Monday. There, fans of either the Tigers or the Tide who are in attendance will be able to grab a beer and munch on a pair of dishes created just for the occasion by Levy Restaurants executive chef Jon Severson, as well as get a taste of some Bay Area flavors. Here’s what’s on the menu on gameday:

Courtesy of Levy Restaurants

For South Carolina’s Clemson Tigers, Severson went the classic stadium food burger route and created Ginger Beef Tiger Sliders, which feature “grilled tri-tip, melted brie, cranberry balsamic chutney, and arugula on a branded ‘Tiger’ bun,” according to a description provided to Food & Wine.

Courtesy of Levy Restaurants

Fans of the Crimson Tide can chow down on the Alabama Slamma, a massive-looking meaty sandwich with “chopped Brookwood brisket on a grilled Silva hot link, with sloe gin barbecue sauce and creamy red cabbage slaw piled on a branded ‘A’ bun.”

"Our designs for the College Football Playoff menu actually started at the beginning of the 49ers season," Severson told Food & Wine via email. "We wanted to make dining at Levi’s Stadium more interactive for fans and create a fun foodie identity for the stadium, so we rolled out a new dining location called The Coin Toss that let fans taste test two new signature dishes each week. The College Football Playoff National Championship is the pinnacle match-up of the season, and we wanted to bring that same competitive drive to menu."

Courtesy of Levy Restaurants

But if visiting fans are looking to keep it local for the vacation eats (or if local fans want a taste of the familiar), Levi’s Stadium also serves up a couple of the venue’s regular offerings. The Dungeness Crab Pretzel features knuckle and claw meat mixed with garlic aioli, dijon, and chives on a fresh butter-toasted pretzel baguette, and the Bay Area Tots top the crispy potato nuggets with “bay shrimp, white cheddar cheese sauce, scallions, and Old Bay seasoning.”

Courtesy of Levy Restaurants

Of course, a bespoke team-themed menu takes time to create well before the Bowls have decided which colleges will come out on top to compete in the championship. Severson had his bases covered with options for both the eventually-defeated FBS College Football Playoff teams. For Notre Dame, a Reuben Foot-Long Dog: would have offered up “shaved corned beef, Thousand Island dressing, dill pickle spears, and aged white Cheddar cheese sauce.” And for Oklahoma, the Sooner Spud would have been a “giant Brookwood pulled pork-stuffed baked potato with Cheddar cheese, scallions, sour cream, and a barbecue sauce drizzle.”

So if your alma mater isn’t in the running during the playoffs, maybe it’s time to root for the team with the best dish!

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