Garden Grille will be no more starting in fall 2008. To replace it will be 19 Market Place. The whole purpose of the Garden Grille was to serve as an interim dining place, said Alan Cushman, director of campus dining.
The Garden Grille has barely been around for one year, opening last fall for the first day of classes. But before the grand opening, there was old faithful Lighthouse. Known by many upperclassmen, it was also well-known that the amount of customers went “lower and lower,” Cushman said. After this analysis, he decided it was time for a change.
With the opening of the Garden Grille, students were very pleased, and the numbers greatly increased. But there have been recent rumors that the Garden Grille doesn’t grill anymore, that they have resorted to pre-made food and discontinued the cooked-to-order phenomenon.
This rumor is likely caused by “express pasta,” a new addition to the pasta section. With numerous complaints that pasta took too long, this feature was added for students who needed to eat right away. Cushman said pasta can take up to 15 minutes per person when it is cooked-to-order.
Sophomore Bret Netzer said there were long lines for pasta last year.
“Express pasta” offers certain pasta dishes prepared throughout the day for people on-the-go. The pasta is still fresh, cooked five to 10 minutes maximum before it’s served, said Cushman.
“I come here when I’m treated to a meal,” Netzer said of Garden Grille, where pasta is his favorite dish.
As for 19 Market Place, many more changes will be made. There will be several different food areas for students to choose from.
One area, a pizza and Mediterranean section, will offer “margherita-style pizza” with thin crust cooked in a brick oven.
“Nothing like Backstage,” Cushman said.
Another section will feature salads and soups with anticipated organic-farmed greens from Cal Poly.
There will also be a grill area with a rotisserie and other grilling options.
All of the stations will be placed in the center of the dining area, near where the gazebo is now, for what Cushman calls “exhibition cooking.”
“Each area (will) have a unique feel to it with its own color scheme,” he said.
The goal is to create a dining room with multiple environments, Cushman said.
Originally set to open fall of 2007, the plan has been pushed back due to budget constraints. It may be scaled back somewhat, but the original plan is still anticipated.
“Bigger portions,” is what civil engineering freshman Nate Ngo would like, and hopefully his needs will be met and he will be able to enjoy the new place before he graduates.