David Chang's Stadium Food Hot Take Is So Right

A live sports game experience is arguably largely defined by the food experience. But in the age of viral food trends, even stadium foods aren't what they used to be. And not everyone thinks that's a good thing. Sports fan and celebrity restaurateur David Chang would agree. The chef knows a few things about good food, and if you've followed his podcast, you know he is never shy about sharing his opinions. Chang recently spoke with Robert Mays on the Athletic Football Show about stadium food and gave us a hot take on how he feels about current trends. 

He's got a personal interest in the matter: His new restaurant concept, Fuku, has outlets in a handful of stadiums and arenas including the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Fuku will be serving their signature fried chicken sandwiches, waffle fries, and sauces at Allegiant Stadium during the Super Bowl as part of the Bud Light Game Day Experience.

Chang's bold statement to Mays: "The trend is for sure ... to make the most insane monstrosity ... I feel like maybe we should get back to making simple good food." It's hard to argue with Chang on that — although we may eat with our eyes, it's most important for the food to taste good.

Viral food versus solid good food

Chang opined that "social media is driving the virality of things" when it comes to the crazy ways some stadium vendors are selling food. The need to have food combinations that draw attention on social media is one of the forces driving food vendors to produce more and more over-the-top presentations. Conversely, the simple food Chang advocates for emphasizes flavor, quality ingredients, and solid cooking techniques. It stands the test of time, offering genuine satisfaction and culinary delight. While trendy food may garner fleeting popularity, the enduring appeal of well-crafted, delicious dishes ensures that they remain relevant after the crowd moves on to the next idea.

We hope that Chang's wish for "simple good food" in stadiums is the next trend that goes viral. We'll get a chance to see how Chang's simple Fuku chicken presentation works out in Fuku outlets in Jacksonville, Florida, and FedEx Field in Maryland, as well as the Las Vegas location.