You have to agree the name Bavarian Rhapsody is absolutely perfect for a new Akron RubberDucks sausage dish — even if you’re not a fan of British rock band Queen.
The sausage, named for the song and recent biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody,” joins the Extreme Foods Menu this season.
The Bavarian Rhapsody is a traditional extra-long beer-braised Austrian sausage link stuffed in a fresh Bavarian pretzel bun. The entire thing is dipped in homemade Dijon cheese sauce and garnished with crispy potato sticks.
The new item will be available for $11 in Canal Park's Bier Garten during RubberDucks games. The 2019 season for the Double-A club begins Thursday, when the team takes on the Altoona Curve at 6:35 p.m.
Also at a news conference Tuesday, the RubberDucks highlighted other new eats this season, including the Duck & Donuts cart that will feature homemade mini doughnuts. Toppings will be cinnamon, powdered sugar and glazed.
New items at the Game Grill + Bar include the Triple Decker Chipotle Chicken BLT, Anthony Bourdain's Bologna and Cheese, and Chipotle Chicken Sliders. The restaurant at the stadium opens two hours before each home game and closes about two hours afterward.
The Bavarian Rhapsody name comes from Eric Csuhta, 40, of New Franklin, who won a contest sponsored by the RubberDucks and Akron’s WONE 97.5-FM classic rock 'n' roll radio station. Listeners submitted rock 'n' roll names for the sausage created by RubberDucks officials. Officially, the name is “WONE Bavarian Rhapsody.”
"It’s great … It’s simple,” RubberDucks spokesman Adam Liberman said of the winning name. “The pretzel is kind of wrapped around the sausage.”
Other entries included “Stairwurst to Heaven,” a nod to Led Zeppelin's “Stairway to Heaven,” and “It’s Only Brat and Roll (But I Like It)," a riff on the Rolling Stones’ "It’s Only Rock 'n' Roll (But I Like It)."
The team's tradition of menu items out of left field, which for the most part are gut-busting, got started in 2011.
That's when then-chef Jason Kerton introduced the Nice 2 Meat U Burger, a tower of three beef patties, two beef franks and bacon; the Three Dog Night, a hot dog stuffed in a bratwurst wrapped in a kielbasa; and the Screamer, which features 21 scoops of ice cream on top of a brownie base and finished off with chocolate syrup, bananas, whipped cream, sprinkles and maraschino cherries. All three are still served.
Buzz about the menu took off on social media after comedian Lewis Black mentioned the Nice 2 Meat U on "The Daily Show." Ken Babby, who purchased the then-Akron Aeros in October 2012, embraced the idea of unusual food, as have owners of other minor- and major-league teams.
The RubberDucks revealed last month that concessions this season will include the new OBJ Dog, named for Odell Beckham Jr., the superstar wide receiver recently acquired by the Browns. It's an all-beef jumbo hot dog dipped in Louisiana Hot Sauce and topped with an onion-bacon-jalapeño (OBJ) relish. It will sell for $7.
Italy in Falls
Here’s an update with a twist on the Rose Italian Kitchen that was announced last year for Front Street in Cuyahoga Falls.
Yes, the folks behind the Burntwood Tavern still plan to open a restaurant in the revived stretch of roadway, in the space that previously housed Hibachi Japan.
But it will not be the second Rose Italian Kitchen. The first was launched about a year ago in Solon.
The new Falls eatery will be Leo’s Italian Social, and will open sometime in May, said Jen Leonard, marketing and events manager for Chef Art Pour, the restaurant group headquartered in Chagrin Falls, which operates nine Burntwood Taverns in Northeast Ohio.
Leonard said Leo’s menu will feature a mix of items available at Rose Italian Kitchen and M Italian in Chagrin Falls, also run by Chef Art Pour. Like M Italian, Leo's will offer pizzas baked in a wood-burning oven. A 3 to 6 p.m. happy hour seven days a week will feature half-price appetizers.
There will be a much larger bar than initially planned, and outdoor bocce courts and a terrace are still coming.
New restaurants often don’t open on schedule, and this one is no exception. Chef Art Pour originally thought it might be open before the end of last year.
Leonard said Chef Art Pour wanted an eatery in the Falls that will be “equally accommodating for a business lunch, or date night or a family dinner.”
The Akron Hungarian American Club, at 694 Waterloo Road, is selling Hungarian sausage, with orders due Friday.
Pickup is from 1 to 3 p.m. April 13. Cost is $4.50 a pound for medium or hot.
To order, call Teresa at 330-753-3135 or the club at 330-724-0259 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A Party Pop-Up at the Whisker Space at the Saalfield Building in Akron, will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 14 and feature food trucks, art, music and more.
The event is in celebration of the first anniversary of Whiskertin Lighting Studio + Showroom. It is being organized by 720 Market, based in North Canton and named for that city's 44720 ZIP code.
The Saalfield Building is at 1145 Getz Ave., which runs off East Miller, in an industrial area south of downtown. The building is named for the former Saalfield Publishing Co., which at one time was among the world's largest publishers of children's books.
For more information, go to the Whiskertin Lighting Facebook page and 720market.com.
720 Market also is organizing the inaugural Local Wine and Maker Expo, which will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 20 at the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Field Turf, next to the museum in Canton.
Wine, beer and mead from Northeast Ohio will be available, along with art and more. More than 12 Northeast Ohio wineries, meaderies and breweries will participate.
Tickets cost $45 and include 10 tastings, a glass, tote bag, admission to the Hall of Fame museum and a 20 percent discount at the Hall's store. For tickets, go to https://bit.ly/2CZqRH1.
The Hall is at 2121 George Halas Drive NW in Canton.
Ramp Up Peninsula
The seventh annual celebration of the wild leek, the Ramp Up Peninsula festival, runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 27 in the village's downtown, where vendors will set up along Main Street.
It will feature ramps in all kinds of foods, as well as artists and crafters and more.
Among the new vendors this year is Maple Leaf Acres of Mahoning County that will be bringing baked goods including sourdough, ramp pesto focaccia, ramp flatbreads and more.
Moxahala Micro Farm, south of Zanesville, also is joining the fest this year, offering house plants, edible flowers, sprouts, herbal salves, and smoked salts with ramp leaves.
The ramp is one of the first edible plants to pop up in spring. Some call them "little stinkers" because of their garlicky aroma. Fans of ramp fests in West Virginia started the Peninsula event in 2013.
For information, go to explorepeninsula.com or email questions to email@example.com.
• The No Muffin Left Behind spring sale runs from 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday at the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank, 350 Opportunity Parkway, in Akron.
Main Street will offer products that are “slightly off spec” from regular standards for $1.25 per pound. A portion of the proceeds (along with any leftovers) will go to the food bank.
Main Street Gourmet, headquartered in Akron, makes muffins, muffin batters, brownies, cookie dough, granola and biscotti. It also makes custom bakery products for restaurants and other customers.
• The German Family Society will offer a country-western theme night of eating and dancing from 5:30 to 11 p.m. April 13.
It is open to the public and will be held at the society's hall at 3871 Ranfield Road in Brimfield Township.
The dinner will feature pulled pork, country chicken, baked beans, roaster potatoes and cabbage slaw. Cost is $20 for nonmembers. Pastries will be available for sale, as will alcoholic beverages.
Captain DJ Dave will play a mix of country, German and popular music to get people dancing. Western wear is encouraged.
Reservations are required by April 9 at 330-633-3949 or 330-335-8985. For more information on the society go to germanfamilysociety.com.
• The fourth Grapes on the Lake will run from 5 to 9 p.m. April 27.
Cost is $20 (presale) for 10 wine tastings, a commemorative glass and a red rose (for women attendees). Tickets are $25 at the door.
The event benefiting Lake Anna Park in Barberton and the Special Olympics will be at the Tadmor Shrine Center, 3000 Krebs Drive in Coventry Township.
The evening will include live music and food for purchase from the Funky Truckeria, the food-truck-influenced Norton eatery.
Wineries signed up so far are Sarah's Vineyard of Cuyahoga Falls, Nauti Vine in Green, Filia Cellars outside Wadsworth, Barrel Run in Rootstown Township and Cana Valley Winery in Atwater Township.
Tickets are available at the Barberton Parks & Recreation offices inside the YMCA building, 500 W. Hopocan Ave., by phone at 330-861-7135, or at the door.
Send local food news to Katie Byard at 330-996-3781 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow her @KatieByardABJ on Twitter or on Facebook.