With the start of the new semester, Manhattan College students, faculty and staff will have the opportunity to experience the new dining services offered by Gourmet Dining LLC, which includes integrating healthy and environmentally friendly options for all. Gourmet Dining became the new food provider for the campus in June and has wasted no time in updating the College's facilities to enhance the dining experience, including the four student dining centers and the faculty dining room.
"During the summer vacation, 15 Manhattan College students participated in creating a fruit, vegetable and herb garden next to Chrysostom Hall as part of Gourmet Dining and the College's combined focus of creating a sustainable commitment to the dining experience," said Michael Frungillo, vice president of Gourmet Dining LLC. "This year, we will showcase the garden and spotlight homegrown vegetables in certain meals to demonstrate that it was grown here and came from a Manhattan College garden."
Perhaps the largest change on campus from Gourmet Dining can be found in Plato's Cave, with the construction of an all-natural café, which will include a text-to-pickup station, a Starbucks cafe, a restaurant set-up with waiter service, and comfortable seating. Plato's Cave will open its doors in mid-September and will also feature a Starbucks kiosk, offering a full line of Starbucks brand items, grab-and-go sandwiches, and salads and desserts.
Dante's Den also received a renovation during the summer and now features a create-your-own service area called Leaves & Grains, a salad and sandwich shop. In addition, it will feature Hale and Hearty soup, brick oven New York style pizza, Chipotle-style Tex Mex, and a grill that offers the basic options, and vegan and vegetarian specialties. There will be two types of coffee available: Green Mountain, a fair-trade option, and the Starbucks brewer. Students can also save time picking up their food by using the ordering kiosks at Leaves & Grains, with their order sent directly to the staff without the crowded lines. After placing an order, the customer can shop through the food court and once the order is ready, they will receive a sms message to come pick up their order. The Leo cafeteria development mirrors Dante's Den and will have a similar menu each day with an Italian Tratorria theme.
In addition, Locke's Loft was completely revamped and new menu options consist of: health & you station, exhibition (made to order) station, carving station, brick oven pizza, vegan/vegetarian station, and an allergy friendly station. The exhibition area allows frequent restaurant goers to try something new on campus, and gives adventurous eaters a chance to try something unique every night. The faculty dining room will also have the specialty stations, as well as the carvery and rotisserie options.
"With the new dining experience at Manhattan College, we wanted a home-style kind of feel, with more restaurant style options, a high-end feeling, and overall more relaxed type of dining," explained Anthony Frungillo, general manager of the Manhattan College Gourmet Dining Experience. "The prices were kept very reasonable and still fit within a student's price range, while the food is being cooked fresh-to-order and without the fats and preservatives."
Plato's Cave, Dante's Den and Locke's Loft will be open all day, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner menus at certain times. The cost of the meal plans will remain the same, with ACDs and Jasper Dollars still available to the campus community.