Restaurant review: NDSU food lab a hidden gem
For $5.85, beverage included, an interesting dining experience is available on the NDSU campus. Students in the Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences programs meet weekly for a lab class that prepares lunch on Tuesday and Thursday. Typical dine...
For $5.85, beverage included, an interesting dining experience is available on the NDSU campus.
Students in the Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences programs meet weekly for a lab class that prepares lunch on Tuesday and Thursday.
Typical diners are NDSU students, faculty and staff. A well-kept secret, the dining room is also open to the public.
Students in the class take turns performing a list of jobs, each student rotating through the entire schedule, completing their tasks for the respective jobs. These include the manager for the day, head cook, salad preparation, kitchen worker, hostess, dining room manager and server.
Menus are set at the beginning of the semester by the instructor in conjunction with the West Dining Center. Yet students can be creative.
For example, on March 27, Sara and, on April 1, Anne, are planning to serve beef stroganoff on parsley buttered egg noodles, burnt squash bake, cornbread and apple pie for dessert.
On April 17, Karen is planning to have a homemade French onion soup with melted cheese and French bread, sirloin steak with baked potato, a jumbo chocolate chunk cookie in the shape of a bunny for dessert and other good stuff for an Easter special.
On April 29, Sarah and, on May 1, Meg will prepare a menu that features instructor Sherri Driscoll's award-winning Asian Salad, featured in the cookbook "Taste of the Times." Add brushetta with fresh tomatoes for a starter and a Special K bar for dessert, and it all adds up to lunch at a great price.
The final chance to experience lunch this semester is May 6 when Stephanie will prepare and serve wild rice soup, charbroiled chicken sandwich, spicy potato wedges and a homemade brownie with chocolate frosting. The menus mentioned here are just a few examples of the food to come, including fresh baked bread.
On my dining experiences so far this semester, I have enjoyed an Italian-fare menu that included a Caesar salad, lasagna, steamed broccoli, crispy garlic toast and a luscious blueberry cheesecake.
To celebrate President's Day, I dined on a Presidential Luncheon, served up by Jasmine, that included a fresh vegetable plate with dip, a wonderful bacon cheeseburger with all the fixins, batter-dipped onion rings and raspberry sherbet with a cherry nut bar.
The food is simple yet served nicely garnished, always tasteful and satisfying. In addition to the planning and preparation of the food, students serve food to diners with what can sometimes be nervous jitters, but still enjoyable and fun. Service begins at 11:30 and ends at noon, so arrive somewhere in between.
Tables in the dining room are covered with linens and cloth napkins are a nice touch. A company of your good friends combined with the student atmosphere are sure to make a special luncheon experience.
The students and instructor Driscoll invite people to call (701) 231-7023 for reservations and directions.
For menu information, call Driscoll at (701) 231-7479 or e-mail her at sherri.driscoll
(The late Vern Markey was an assistant professor in Hospitality and Tourism Management at NDSU.)
Student food lab
West Dining Center, lower level
North Dakota State University
Ratings (out of 4 forks):
Food: 4 forks
Service: 4 forks
Ambiance: 3 forks
Serving hours: 11:30 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Thursdays
Phone: (701) 231-7023
Reservations: Strongly suggested
Smoking: Smoke-free dining room
Children's menu: No
Credit cards accepted: None, cash or check only; NDSU student meal plan is also accepted