Amidst the sea of familiar faces, swarms of people, studying, crunching leaves and jam-packed schedules, one of the most important parts of being a college student cannot be ignored—eating. From snacks to meals, lots of recent campus buzz has revolved around the new dining changes this year. The most talked about feature is the addition to Sutcliffe—Sandella’s.
Previously Jazzman’s, Sandella’s is the new and improved eating option, meant to feature a new menu, more variety, expanded seating, and better atmosphere. So far, it has mixed reviews. From the social media declaration “Sandella’s is bae,” to gentle annoyance over the wait, the reviews are in.

The cesar salads are allegedly “much too small, but tasty,” according to one senior.

A junior commented, “I find the wait to be rather long at times, but the food is delicious.”

“I like the fact that they’re there and the food they offer, but I think the employees need to be trained more for speed,” one faculty member said.

It has been described as the “gluten-full café,” and this has raised concerns from those who have dietary restrictions—even food items generally not associated with bread like omelets appear wrapped in bread. It seems it certainly is living up to its name of the flatbread café.

The Starbucks is another big draw for students, but again the service time is a bit slow. Orders so far have been frequently forgotten, missed, made incorrectly, or simply take too long for busy students to afford going between classes. Students have expressed exasperation with the service on social media, commenting, “Sandella’s needs to train their employees on how to operate the register.”

Hopefully, the speed and service will improve as the routine becomes more natural for the workers, who themselves have been described as “friendly” and “particularly delightful.”

Denzal Doneghy, a student favorite, expressed his preference for making drinks rather than the food orders. Since Jazzman’s was more drink-specific, it was more comfortable for him.

However, he enjoys seeing more people who are drawn to the food.

It seems other workers are adjusting as well, and we can expect the service to improve as employees get into the groove. The prices are reasonable, and compared to Jazzman’s, and the other dining options on campus, the range of offerings is much wider.

A particular highlight in comparison with Jazzman’s is the variety of hot food —no longer must students rely on Cowan for their warm meal fix. It certainly does offer a wide variety of cold sandwiches and on-the-go items as well, proving that the menu revamp was a good decision.

As for the seating, it is much more spread out and similarly much more varied. One junior described it as “feeling like you’re off campus.” When one walks over to Sandella’s, they are immediately greeted with the sight of students meeting professors, professors meeting professors, students studying and just chatting—it almost seems like a mini-library. As such, it is quickly being recognized as a good place to study and chat with a coffee just as much as a place to eat a meal.

When going to Sandella’s, recommendations are high for chicken burritos, rice bowls, and the brand new fall flavored coffees.

In addition to the Jazzman’s-to-Sandella’s change, the Everyday Café has undergone a menu overhaul. The most popular items among students are the smoothies and milkshakes, which are perfect for a quick after-practice or pre-class pick-me-up. I myself am partial to the parfaits and on-the-go healthy options.

The recommendations for the Everyday Café are the extensive smoothie lists, milkshakes, the sweet potato fries, and mac and cheese bites. Overall, students have said that the Everyday Café has superior service and tends to be more conveniently located, but Sandella’s provides better quality food for those who are willing to wait.

Even Cowan has been stepping up recently, offering a variety of gluten-free and vegetarian options, as well as such highlights as the hummus samples, giant sub sandwich, and Appalachian themed dinner.

Cowan, of course, is only open for specific meals, however, and that is where the other two come in—providing accessible, tasty meals that can be easily purchased at the convenience of the students. Not to be ignored, the fan favorites from Cowan aren’t gone—the cheesy bread, quesadillas, no-bakes, and fried tofu vegetarian options.

Overall, the consensus on campus food is that the service remains friendly, and students are generally pleased with the variety. One thing is certainly clear—Centre students don’t have to worry about consuming only ramen for the entire school year, thanks to our conscientious food staff and new and improved dining options this year. Check them out next time you’re around and need some yummy food—and let’s face it, as college students, when don’t we?

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