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Venezuelan Entrepreneurship presents in Connecticut Open

Venezuelan Entrepreneurship presents in Connecticut Open

Posted by Dubraswka Aguilar on August 11, 2014

This month’s Connecticut Open women’s field will feature three of the world’s Top 10 players. Former men’s stars James Blake, Jim Courier and Andy Roddick will also be in action.

And while the tournament has put together a pretty strong list of tennis players, its food lineup for fans may be just as impressive.

With the addition of food trucks like Tony’s Orangeside Donuts, the Venezuelan Valencia Luncheria and the Spuds Your Way baked potatoes, the tournament has really upgraded its food selection. Tony’s Orangeside Donuts features an assortment of its signature square-cut donuts. The Valencia Luncheria is a Venezuelan food truck, which makes the Venezuelan sandwiches called Arepas. Customers have over 40 options to choose from for their sandwich. The top-seller is the Carne Mechada, which has shredded strip steak.

“Venezuelan food is still new to North America,” said Michael Young, whose restaurant Valencia Luncheria is based in Norwalk. “It’s a cuisine many people haven’t tried. It will be new to them and I’m excited to be a part of the tournament.” Spud Your Way, as advertised, is “A meal in a peel.” Its specialty is baked potatoes with a variety of toppings, ranging from Buffalo Philly chicken to butter, brown cinnamon, maple syrup and marshmallow fluff.

In addition, the Connecticut Open has contracted R Entertainment to produce food for the tournament. The company handles food for many major music festivals as well as the PGA Tour’s Phoenix Open. R Entertainment is led by chef Aaron May, whose restaurants have been featured on the Food Network.

“The freshest, best food we can provide,” May said. “We want to bring a restaurant perspective in. We want to enhance the experience. It’s going to be a wonderful tournament and we want to do our job.”

May explains R Entertainment will bring the Lobster Shack, a classic Connecticut-style fish shack with lobster rolls, crab cakes and more. And that’s not all. Staples like Caseus, the grilled cheese truck, and La Petite France, the crepes food cart, and Ben & Jerry’s remain.

Another new look will be the Baseline Tap House, a beer garden featuring a selection of craft beers from Connecticut and the rest of New England. Don’t feel like waiting in line for food? No problem. Fans can use gopago.com, a service that will give them the opportunity to order and pick up food from an express line at the concession stand.

“Any consumer that goes to a large scale live event, sports or entertainment, food is a huge part of that experience,” tournament director Anne Worcester said. “It makes it even better, or worse. We haven’t looked this hard at food service in a while. So in a year of transformation, looking to improve and enhance the consumer’s and spectator’s experience, we decided to revamp the food court.”

There will also be several other new off-court events and special features.

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