Welcome back! After a brief hiatus for winter break and winter term, everyone is back in Oxford ready to begin spring semester. While many worked, relaxed or watched the winter weather make an abrupt 2016 introduction, we were hard at work on a variety of exciting additions for this coming semester! The buffet halls are the biggest source of excitement on campus, including Harris Dining Commons, Western Dining Commons and Garden Commons. Here are our biggest announcements:
1. Extended Hours at Harris
For some, the breaks in buffet hall hours (especially between lunch and dinner) were a source of frustration. Now, in order to account for students whose schedules don’t always play nice with buffet lunch hours, we are extending the hours at Harris Dining Hall. Monday through Thursday, Harris will be open from 7:30 AM until 10:30 AM and then will be open again from 11 AM until 8 PM, remaining open through lunch and dinner. This – compared to closing from 2 PM until 5 PM last semester – will give students a buffet dining option outside of standard lunch and dinner meal times!
It is important to mention that not every station will be available from 2 PM until 5 PM, with the “hot” stations needing time to cook and prepare food for the dinner service, but that brings us to the next exciting announcement…
2. The Deli Bar
Harris is adding a Deli Bar! Students will now be able to stop by Harris and build their own deli sandwich at the new Harris Deli Bar. The new station will offer a variety of sandwich toppings and even a daily “party dip” option (spinach artichoke dip… etc.), providing students with a customizable healthy option for lunch, dinner and, now, the time in between. The Salad, Soup and Fruit Bars will also be open throughout the new extended hours, offering even more healthy options throughout the middle part of the day. However, if you’re more interested in grabbing some ice cream, that area will be also available during the extend time to satisfy your sweet-tooth.
To go along with the addition of a Deli Bar at Harris, Western Dining Commons is adding a Deli Bar as well. Much like the one at Harris, students will be able to pick from a variety of deli options and make their own sandwich their way. The Western Deli Bar will only be open during standard hours of operation, as Harris is the only buffet hall extending their hours.
Students who call Garden Commons their “home” dining location needn’t feel left out though, as their Deli Station from last semester returns with only minor revisions meant to make the station more prominent for students who are looking for the custom, deli sandwich experience. Be sure to give that a try the next time you’re at Garden!
3. Menu Additions
This semester, our focus is providing and exposing students to an increased variety of healthy options. That includes more vegan and vegetarian entrees at buffet halls and other new look items like composed vegan/vegetarian salads available at buffet salad bars.
New vegan breakfast items will be available at the different buffet halls (like vegan muffins). Other accommodations have been made for those looking to keep up their healthy eating New Year’s resolutions like making meatless options more accessible and offering more veggie side dishes at Campus Grill locations. Vegan crumbles and tofu will be available at breakfast upon request, as will other vegan/vegetarian alternatives. Kale will be making an appearance on campus this semester and hot cereal/oatmeal dishes will be available at our buffet locations for breakfast.
Now, don’t fret meat-lovers, your favorites are still available. In fact, the Campus Grill locations are introducing a new daily “specialty item” which will be a hot, unique sandwich like a Philly Cheesesteak or a Meatball Sub, which rotates daily. The Campus Grill will also be rotating through a variety of different chicken dishes and even different types of fries.
4. Location Specific Additions for the Buffets
Harris: Miami Spice will be open at lunch. On Saturdays, Harris will be serving made-to-order omelettes and Harris will serve crepes on Sundays.
Western: Mashed Potato Bowls will be available once again at the International Station (when you first walk in on the right) on rotation with tacos, burritos and more. Be sure to check MyTray to see what is being served when. There will be more pizza flavors and the Grill & Roast station will offer more items this semester.
Garden: Made-to-order pasta will be available over at Caio, offering students the opportunity to customize their pasta dishes. Additionally, more specialty pasta sauces will be available. Whole wheat pasta will also cycle in at that location. Look for a couple new stir fry recipes at Zen Garden.
Haines’ Boulangerie: Kale has been added to the menu and there is a new Chipotle Chicken Salad Wrap that deserves your undivided attention.
Sundial: Tortellini Tuesday is a thing! Tortellini will be offered at Sundial on Tuesdays, which is always a good thing.
Pulley Diner: You can now order a veggie side instead of fries. In the early going, we recommend that you ask for the substitution when you order.
First Stop: First Stop is now opening at 7 AM on weekdays. Between 7 AM and 10 AM, students can grab a quick To-Go breakfast sandwich with a coffee as a part of our new combo!