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Davies High students get a taste of running a restaurant with 'The Nest'

FARGO - There's a new place for local Eagles to feed. The Nest cafe opened Thursday at Davies High School, providing soups, sandwiches, hot entrees and specialty coffees. Energy was high a couple minutes before the student-run cafe's 10:40 a.m.

Fargo Davies senior Hayley Andresen stirs the chicken and wild rice soup offered at The Nest Cafe on Thursday, March 19, 2015. Carrie Snyder / The Forum
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FARGO – There’s a new place for local Eagles to feed.

The Nest cafe opened Thursday at Davies High School, providing soups, sandwiches, hot entrees and specialty coffees.
Energy was high a couple minutes before the student-run cafe’s 10:40 a.m. grand opening last week.
The wait staff was finishing its lunch and cooks were stirring soups and prepping their stations.
Hostess and manager Baylee Cushman skittered between the kitchen and the front of the house, making sure everything was in place.
“We open in two minutes. This is a pretty calm team,” said Family and Consumer Science teacher Lana Feeley. “They’ve had nine weeks of training. They know what they’re doing.”
The menu was developed and tested by two classes of FACS juniors and seniors, who will take turns as managers, servers, chefs and delivery runners, so they all get a taste of the jobs in a restaurant, Feeley said.
Thursday’s offerings included soups, chicken fettuccine alfredo, calzone, strawberry cheesecake and Hershey’s brownies a la mode.
Chef Haley Anderson nervously stirred two big pots of beer cheese and chicken wild rice soups.
She had never cooked on a restaurant scale before.
“I wanted to see what was behind the scenes,” Anderson said.
Two cooking stations away, Mason Erstad plated chicken fettuccine alfredo. Eight orders in eight minutes.
“I made the sauce today,” the Food Network fan said. “I like to cook.”
Which is good because that’s when things heated up.
“I have orders up the wazoo!” said Cushman, bustling into the kitchen to prod the servers and chefs to shift their effort levels up a notch for the lunch rush.
It was a lot calmer in the eating area.
The FACS pod common room had been transformed into a cozy lunchtime nook. The tables were set with black tablecloths, silverware, glasses, menus and LED-lit nests.
Senior Noel Edmunds said the eats had the school cafeteria beat.
“The food is really good. It’s kind of like Olive Garden,” said Edmunds, twirling fettuccine on her fork.
Thomas Lavin said he had gotten out of his house too late to make lunch. But the junior said his beer cheese soup was a fine backup plan.
“It’s definitely better than the school’s,” he said.
Art teacher Nancy Leier made her order online, cutting her wait time to just a couple of minutes.
“This is the highlight of my week,” Leier said. “All of the teachers look forward to this.”
The Nest, open to students, staff and visitors to Davies, will serve lunch from 10:40 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays through May 21.
The Nest will start taking online orders next week for delivery in the school.
Readers can reach Forum reporter Helmut Schmidt at (701) 241-5583

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