The Washington Post

Find your favorite Nats Park eats

(The Washington Post)

I hate the idea of spending a fortune on playoff tickets only to spend a third of the game waiting in line for a cheeseburger. Having said that, food has always been a part of the baseball experience. Hot dogs, chicken tenders and pretzels remain plentiful, but Nationals Park takes things up a notch. The solution: Plan your eats ahead of time and arrive early enough to find your ballpark favorites with the map above.

Ben’s Chili Bowl (Sections 109, 140, 301, 315): This District food icon has been a Nationals Park standby since the ballpark opened, and the main draw is its plump half-smoke.

Flippin’ Pizza (115, 214, 225, 310): The foldable cheese, pepperoni and tomato-basil varieties and cost $6 each; if you’re feeding a group, a full pie goes for $36.

Dolci Gelati (112, 135, 235, 307): Enjoy the flavors of peanut butter, stracciatella, mint chip, lemon and strawberry. A cup costs $5 to $7.

Hard Times Cafe (106, 116, 128): Keep your eyes open for a notebook-size vessel of tortilla chips, the local chain’s signature chili nachos.

Taste of the Majors (117, 313): Regional dishes from 17 Major League Baseball cities.

Red Porch (100): The stadium’s sit-down restaurant prioritizes beer pairings with slightly-upgraded stadium fare.

Shake Shack (240): Shack burgers, Concretes and a line that usually takes an inning or three to wait through.

El Verano Taqueria (239): A surprisingly authentic taco stand, with quesadillas, churros and Mexican elote — grilled corn on the cob dipped in mayo and cheese.

Box Frites (238): Belgian-style fries with your choice of five creamy dipping sauces, but let’s be honest: you’re going to pick the smoked bacon aioli.

Blue Smoke (237): The barbecue options here provide a great synthesis of summer’s favorite food with summer’s favorite sport.

Alex Baldinger is editor of the Going Out Guide blog, which covers food, drink, arts, music, events and other curiosities in the D.C. area. He is forever in search of a great sandwich.

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