When you attend an Islanders game at UBS Arena, there are no guarantees of hearing Maxine Nightingale belting out “Right Back Where We Started From”, the team’s victory song. What the team and the arena can control is the fan experience from the time you enter the building until the time you leave.
Part of that experience is the food and beverage options and some new items were unveiled on Wednesday during a media event at UBS Arena.
“One of the most important things to the guest experience here is the ability to innovate around our food and beverage and our culinary and hospitality programs,” said Kim Stone, president of UBS Arena.
These days, grabbing something to eat at a sporting event or a concert is more than just your traditional hot dog, hamburger or chicken fingers. While the classic favorites may still be more than enough for many fans of all ages, there continues to be an evolution of the options a fan will have, especially at UBS Arena.
What a fan sees on the menu at the various concession stands and markets around UBS Arena will certainly play a role in the overall experience of going to an Islanders game or even that highly-anticipated Billy Joel concert on New Year’s Eve.
“It is the thing that touches our guests the most when they come here and I think we do a great job,” said Mike Sciortino, general manager of UBS Arena. “I’m really proud of the building and I’m really proud of the job our partners at Delaware North have done.”
Below are the new items, with descriptions and locations, courtesy of the Islanders.
The new items
New food items
- Slapshot Shareable Nachos: Crispy tortilla chips topped with chicken tinga, white queso, pico de gallo, cilantro, cotija cheese, salsa verde and fresh jalapenos. Served in a souvenir hockey puck. Available at Market 102.
- Blue and Orange Kettle Corn: The perfect mix of sweet and salty, all while supporting the Islanders’ colors. Available at the Section 110 popcorn stand and at all beer stands around the arena.
- Refillable Souvenir Popcorn Cup: Get yours while they last! Enjoy delicious fresh-popped popcorn and come back for more. Available at the Section 110 popcorn stand.
- Short Rib Grilled Cheese: Two thick slices of buttered and griddled Texas toast, filled with hearty short ribs, caramelized onions and N.Y. cheddar cheese. Available at Section 231.
- Italian Beef Sandwich: The classic beef sandwich. Slow herb-roasted beef, garlic jus and crunchy giardiniera on a seeded semolina hero. Available at Market 102.
- Grilled Shrimp Po Boy: Cajun grilled shrimp, lettuce, tomato and spicy aioli, served on crunchy French bread. Available at Market 220.
- Fear the Schmear: An explosion of flavor, this sandwich contains seared braised pork belly, fiery roasted habanero cream cheese, tomato and clover honey drizzle, all on an oversized English muffin. Available at Market 103.
- Burgerology Classic Cheeseburger: Signature beef blend patty, American cheese, tomato, pickles and house sauce on a torta bun. Available at Burgerology at Section 119, along with Markets 203 and 229 and Section 214.
- Burgerology Henry Ford Burger: Bacon, signature beef-blend patty, cheddar cheese, caramelized onions and house sauce on a torta bun. Available at Burgerology at Section 119.
- Cross Check Family-Sized Italian Hero: Enough for the whole family, this monstrous Italian hero has salami, pepperoni, ham, provolone, lettuce, tomato, red onion, banana peppers, olive oil and vinegar. Served with a half-pound each of macaroni salad and coleslaw in a New York Islanders-branded, 2-foot-long carry tray. Available at Market 102.
- Burgerology Rainbow Cookie Milkshake: Vanilla ice cream mixed with raspberry puree, chocolate syrup and rainbow cookie pieces. Topped with whipped cream and a rainbow cookie with rainbow sprinkles. Available at Burgerology at Section 119.
- Burgerology Campfire S’mores Milkshake: Vanilla ice cream mixed with graham crackers, chocolate syrup and toasted marshmallow syrup. Topped with graham cracker and homemade whipped cream, drizzled with chocolate syrup and graham dust. Available at Burgerology at Section 119.
- Glaze Donuts: Offerings include New York Islanders-themed, Bavarian cream-filled donut and coffee. Available at Market 111, Market 203 and a Glaze Donuts-branded portable location at Section 224.
New cocktail items
- Limited Edition Souvenir Mule Mugs: A collectible 3-set series (orange, blue and stainless steel) that will be released throughout the 2023-2024 New York Islanders season. Available at all bars around the arena. Limited quantities of each, so grab them while you can.
- NY Islanders Goalie Helmet Beer Tower: Enough beer for a group – and then some – served in a custom tower with a goalie helmet at the bottom. Available at the Hyundai Club and Belmont Hall.
- Smoked Cocktails: Options include the smoked Patron Margarita and Clyde May’s Whiskey. Available at the American Express Lounge.
- Frozen Cocktails: Rotating flavors include Electric Vodka Lemonade, Mojito, Margarita and Pina Colada. Available at bars at Sections 109, 118 and 204, and at Belmont Hall.
After the conclusion of an Islanders game, the “Three Stars of the Game” are announced to the crowd and the hope is that it’s a clean sweep for the Islanders because that would mean that it was a win. So, with that in mind, here are my “three stars” of the UBS Arena Food and Beverage event.
The third star was the Short Rib Grilled Cheese sandwich that will be available this season on the 200 level. The sandwich features a brazed short rib with cheese and caramelized onions on Texas Toast.
The second star was the fantastic and delicious assortment of donuts and other desserts from Glaze, the official donut and coffee of UBS Arena. They are freshly made with great options to choose from.
And my number one star of the event was the burgers and shakes from Burgerology, with five locations on Long Island in Farmingdale, Rockville Centre, Huntington, Patchogue and Stony Brook.
There were two burgers showcased on Wednesday, the classic cheeseburger and the “Henry Ford” burger that includes a bacon blend. The burgers were nice and juicy and bonus points for using a potato bun.
Also available were the “Campfire” s’mores shake and the “Rainbow Cookie” Milkshake.
Other options we liked
There are shareable items like the “Crosscheck” Italian hero, “Slapshot” shareable nachos that come in an Islanders souvenir hockey puck and a 100-ounce beer tower available in Hyundai Club and Belmont Hall. Keep in mind you will need two people in order to order the beer tower.
“We’re just really trying to push our culinary standard of innovation but also keeping our roots of what people on (Long) Island want to eat,” said Ted Donnelly, the Executive Chef at UBS Arena. “Not just fancy stuff…not just chicken tenders but really take old favorites and really innovate.”
Some other items unveiled include the “Fear the Schmear” sandwich which is a toasted English Muffin with roasted habanero cream cheese, brazed pork belly seared on a flat top, a slice of tomato and drizzled with honey. There’s also an Italian Beef sandwich which is a French Dip type of sandwich with spicey jar Donaire.
As far as drinks are concerned, there will be smoked cocktails available in certain locations and drinks can be ordered in a limited-edition cocktail mug available in silver, orange and blue.
As the Islanders get ready for their season and home opener against the Buffalo Sabres on Oct. 14, the staff at UBS Arena, along with their concession partners at Delaware North, are leaving no stone unturned when it comes to making sure that the fans don’t come home from a game hungry or thirsty.
All the photos below were taken by UBS Arena/Islanders photographer Dennis DaSilva.