AVI cooks up new menu, dining options

Published by Haley Potter, Author: Haley Potter - Rocket Contributor , Date: August 31, 2018

AVI has introduced new menu items and changes to meal swipe options on campus in order to accommodate more student suggestions.

Resident District Manager of AVI, Joe Balaban said that AVI has added meal swipe options to Rocky’s and Weisenfluh, following a successful test of meal swipes at Elia last semester. According to Balaban, Rocky’s will be accepting meal swipes on Sunday-Thursday from 8:00 pm to midnight and on weekends from 4:00 pm until 10:00 pm. Elia will also be taking swipes Monday-Friday from 7:30 am-9:00 am and 1:45 pm-10:00 pm. They will allow swipes on Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00 pm until 5:00 pm. As always, students can use their swipes at Boozel, Boozel Express, and Campus Drive Grill during all operating hours.

“The biggest feedback right now is students still trying to understand what they can get with a meal swipe at each location and the times that they can swipe,” Balaban said.

Balaban also said that with each meal swipe at these new locations, students get an entrée piece, their choice of fruit or chips, and a drink.

Aside from just added meal swipe options, the menu at some of the dining locations has also been updated.

Dan Tokarek, Director of Operations for AVI, said that Weisenfluh’s Elia restaurant is now configured to be more like a Panera-style restaurant. He shared that students will now have the option of picking a half sandwich with a half salad or half soup of their choice.

“There are very interesting combos to make up a meal,” Tokarek said. “Everyone is sure to find something that suits them.”

Tokarek also mentioned that AVI brought back some of the all-time favorites at Met. This dining option used to have more upscale flavors that are ‘far out there’, according to Tokarek.

“We did some research over the summer to ask students what their favorites were, and in return, we now have real fries, loaded fries, and some different styles of burgers including the green and white burger,” Tokarek said.

AVI also realized that some of the meals at Horizons were too international for some students, so they cut back and made it a Chiptole-style, build-your-own burrito and nachos type of concept.

“Everything we do is fresh,” Tokarek explained. “Students are surprised when their burrito is made from dough in just 30 seconds.”

Tokarek said that they are already gaining extremely positive feedback on the new options and during the Community Assistant luncheon, small samples of each item were served and people went nuts over the new food options.

Along with changes to the menu, there are also some changes to the way that the produce is grown to be used by AVI in the kitchen. Executive Chef, David Uram said that with the new hydroponic garden located right in the center of Boozel, they can harvest anything from radishes, mini peppers, lettuce and basil.

“We use about two pounds of the fresh basil everyday to put into our marinara sauce,” Uram said.

The lettuce is used at the salad bar and also at the Root station, Uram said. Each day, AVI showcases two fresh pickles at the condiment station. One pickle is always their dill, while the other rotates each day.

According to Uram, the number one new item this semester is the Diner Concept Station. It features a 100% made-to-order breakfast sandwich with choice of bread, egg, protein, and cheese.

“This breakfast sandwich is a smashing hit,” Uram said. “Almost too good of a hit at this point.”

The new dining plans are not just for on-campus residents, Balaban noted. AVI has now brought back their off-campus delivery services to nearby apartments, he said. He said that all students would need to do is call and order from a limited menu, give their flex, information, and wait for the delivery of their food.

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Haley is a senior converged journalism major, and this is her fourth year contributing to the news section of The Rocket. This is her second year as a senior Rocket contributor and she focuses on campus and community news. Haley also contributes to the multimedia section of The Rocket, which goes hand-in-hand with her role as President of WSRU-TV News. After graduation, Haley hopes to continue her passion for reporting and become a broadcast news reporter or Multimedia Journalist at a local news station. Aside from The Rocket and WSRU-TV News, Haley is also a member of the Alpha Epsilon-Rho honor society, National Broadcasting Society, Lambda Pi Eta, and SRU's Project to End Human Trafficking.


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