Among the new offerings at Subaru Park this season is a concession stand bearing the name of a popular Philadelphia chef who has made a name for himself with “ghost kitchens” and pop-up events in the city.
“It’s a dream realized to have my cuisine aka black folk style in an arena like this,” Harley said at an event at Subaru Park on Friday. “Just people that have been following me and love soccer are going to get their grub and watch an amazing soccer team.”
Reuben “Big Rube” Harley has worn many hats over the years. He made a name for himself when he helped launch the throwback jersey fad as marketing director for Mitchell & Ness and had a photography column for many years called “Street Gazing” that ran in the Philly Daily News, but his love for the culinary arts goes way back to when he was a kid in West Philadelphia learning to cook with his grandmother.
“It’s my grandmother’s recipe that I enhanced,” he said of his fried chicken.
Big Rube’s concession stand — located behind section 132 (where visiting fans typically sit) — grew out of a partnership with local entrepreneur Aaron Anderson, who has also brought an Original Hot Dog Factory (Sections 104 and 125) and Rita’s franchise to the stadium (Section 112).
Anderson first met Harley at an event he was doing in University City in 2019.
“When I tasted his fried chicken I almost melted in my seat, that’s how good it was,” Anderson said.
Like a lot of people who have become fans of Big Rube’s food in recent years, Anderson started following him on Instagram and that eventually led to a friendship and business relationship. Working together, Anderson and Big Rube have opened pickup and delivery locations in West Philly and Fishtown in the city and now the concession stand at Subaru Park.
“He’s a good person, very genuine,” Anderson said. “And, you know, he has the flavor. I just said it all makes sense so I presented him with the opportunity and we just went from there.”