A review of every open dining location on campus
This new school year has brought a lot of new changes. The dining halls are no different. Most of the locations have new hours, limited menu options, and some places have fully shut down (cough cough Tazza). Here’s what you need to know about each dining location for the fall semester.
ABP: Never go to ABP when ABP is the only place open. Because everyone. goes. to. ABP. ABP is a solid choice in a pinch. The quality is reliable and depending on the crowd, you can get your food quickly. I personally recommend the Chipotle Turkey & Avocado Sandwich with some salt and vinegar chips stuffed inside and crunched down. It’s a whole melty avocado chipotle crunchy tangy situation. Nothing to be mad about at ABP. In a rush, they can sometimes forget things — like taking the peel off the avocado. But overall, I would rate it a 7/10.
The Exchange: Since getting to campus, at least 15 different people have told me that The Exchange is the best place on campus. I can assure you it lives up to the hype. The staff is super friendly and helpful, even when there’s a line out the door. I get a chicken salad melt with lettuce, tomato, banana peppers, honey mustard, and onions. If you’re into tuna, it’s good with that too. No matter what you get, the bread is always buttered and toasted to perfection, and the ingredients they use are fresh and high quality. If you’re vegetarian or just struggling to get veggies on campus, their grilled veggie sandwich is solid as well. Overall, I would rate it a 9/10.
Food Hall at Resnik: Resnik feels like the quintessential college dining experience. The food there is surprisingly good. It’s the usual greasy cafeteria food, but it’s done well. The tater tots and pizza are good, but the daily specials are hit or miss. The last time I went, the grilled pineapple tofu was delicious. I would never go here as my first choice, but if you live close and it’s convenient, it’s never a bad option. I would rate it a 6/10.
El Gallo de Oro: This place gets a lot of mixed reviews. Some people are regulars. Some people throw it away after one bite. Some people have allegedly gotten food poisoning from it. The best way to comprehensively describe Gallo is like an off-brand chipotle. The quesadillas are done well (although it’s pretty hard to mess that up), but the bowls can be bland. Try it for yourself, if you dare. Rating: 5/10
La Prima: I go to La Prima at least twice a day. If my blocks somehow actually get used up by the end of the semester, I’ll have La Prima to thank. Their espresso is perfect: balanced, rich, but not bitter. Their lattes are popular. I got the caramel latte once and thought it was pretty artificial tasting, but the vanilla is great. The best part about La Prima is their iced dirty chai lattes. Yes, I get a little less respect from the Indian community every time I order it. No, I don’t care. Their baked goods are delicious, but they would be better if they were heated up. I get their sandwiches in a pinch, the club sandwich and chicken salad are great, but the egg salad is a little dry and the tortellini was weirdly sour. Don’t be the person who goes to a coffee shop and gets the tortellini. Overall, I would rate it a 9/10.
Rohr Commons- Tepper Eatery: Tepper is another place I frequent. Their sushi is awesome—I would describe it as a little above Whole Foods quality. When you ask nicely, they’ll make you a fresh custom roll. I love to get a spicy crunchy salmon avocado roll, and if I’m feeling like I haven’t eaten anything nutritious in a week, I’ll get an avocado veggie roll. Tepper also has really fresh and simple teriyaki salmon that they sear to order. The kimchi fried chicken sandwich is also a really creative and fun dish. It’s crispy and fatty, but the vinegar in the kimchi cuts through just the right amount. The pizza looks cool coming out of the woodfire oven but smells and tastes cafeteria-esque. Overall, I would also rate this place a 9/10.
Tartan Express/Tahini- Tahini is a beloved place in my friend group. Don’t come here when you’re in a rush — the guy inside, although lovely and helpful, does take his time. The fact that Tahini takes a long time is partly what makes it so good. They fry your falafel and pita fries fresh to order and dress the sandwiches and bowls with care. I love the falafel pita sandwich. I get sides of the Israeli chopped salad and the pita fries, which are strips of pita, deep fried to a golden brown blister and dusted with za’atar. Tahini, if you’re reading this, have you considered cinnamon sugar? Treat the pita fries and the ‘salad’ as a chips-and-salsa situation. You won’t regret it. The bowls are also pretty good, but they can get kind of mundane to eat after a while. I would rate this place 8/10.
Taste of India- My opinions on this place are strong. And many disagree with me. When I went to Taste of India, the chicken curry was too salty to eat and the eggplant tasted like fish (which my friend corroborates. Hi Hannah). The Korma was palatable and the Naan was delicious, but the other two dishes really ruined it for me. Other people (non-Indians mostly) like this place, and it’s convenient that it’s open late and close to the dorms on the Hill. My opinion is that this place is a 5/10. Based on what the people around me say, I would rate it 7/10.
The Underground- When they don’t randomly decide to shut down half their menu, The Underground is one of my go-to’s. Their burgers (regular and black bean) are classic and delicious. Their chicken quesadillas are almost always under filled, but the veggie ones are stuffed with peppers, onions, mushrooms, spinach, and cheese. It always hits. Their sweet potato fries, omelets, Meshugna (basically loaded latkes), berry french toast, and pulled pork sandwich are always great. Rating: 9/10.
Zebra- Zebra Lounge is, as its name suggests, covered ceiling to floor in zebra everything. The inside of the cafe is super cozy, even though the seating area is closed now, and the staff is always kind and friendly. When the temperature dips a little more, get the pumpkin black coffee. No creamer or sugar necessary, just the black coffee is incredible. The pastries are delicious and rumored to be from Prantl's Bakery on Walnut. Try the lemon poppyseed muffin or one of their soups on a colder day. The rule of thumb for this place is that if it sounds good, chances are it is. Except for the chai tea lattes. Go to La Prima for that.