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Tour De Mem

Tyra McClung, Assistant Arts & Entertainment Editor

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Student taste buds were taken on an international experience Tuesday, Feb. 26 during Memorial Hall’s premium night, “A Travelers Feast.”

Bodies trailed out onto the dining room floor as students lined up waiting to fill their plates with an intercontinental variety of flavor. Forks, knives and spoons managed to get a little taste of Mexico, India, China, America, Japan, Italy and France.

The multi-cultural menu presented a notable delight among students.

“I never come here for dinner but I like these events, they bring different food than we always have,” junior Amy Sautner said.

The seven countries were represented through seven stations, each also providing a vegan option.

Mexico offered a burrito bar, rice and beans, nachos and cinnamon churros. India served a saucy chicken curry, chana masala, vegetable samosa and lemon ginger rice. China had a wide variety including general tso’s chicken and pork fried rice. America’s station offered all the backyard barbecue staples such as cheeseburgers and corn dogs, while Italy served traditional cuisine including spaghetti and cannolis.

Japan and France were clear crowd favorites. Students stood in a continuous line patiently waiting to have their plates filled with spicy tuna rolls and miso soup. For dessert, they were given an extra treat as their banana flambé was set aflame before their eyes.

The Central Connecticut Food Committee came up with the idea for the theme and General Manager Jonathan Small said he thought it would be a great idea.

“We got great comments from the students and I don’t think anyone ate from just one station,” Small said. “The customer satisfaction survey was also used in planning what countries. We selected the countries that the students asked for the most from the fall survey. We really do read every comment.”

Premium nights are a dining experience that occurs at least once each semester, typically located in Memorial Hall. Previous themes have included “Steak Night” and “Sushi Night,” however, the interest in those signature nights started to dwindle.

During the fall semester, new themes were explored and received positive responses from diners.

“Last semester’s ‘Italian Night’ and Thanksgiving specials were also extremely well received,” Small stated.

Sodexo marketing interns aided in the advertising of the event hoping to draw out the largest group possible. Social media was their main source of promotion, as well as, hanging flyers in the individual dorms targeting those students with meal plans, according to Intern Samantha Potter.

Hilltop was closed early at 2 p.m., as the premium nights require all hands on deck.

Students are encouraged to share their dining desires with the catering company so that they are able to provide a better experience for students.

“We love student recommendations and suggestions. Social media [like] Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and old fashioned conversations work great for suggestions. I know I’m going back to the Food Committee for ideas [because] they were great,” Small continued.

Tyra McClung
Japan’s Sushi Display

France’s Banana Flambe station

“Melting Plates”

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Tour De Mem