By MARTY LEVINE
Student dining is going handcrafted and international this fall — and one part of it also will be available to all staff and faculty.
Anyone at Pitt can patronize the new Smokeland BBQ truck, which originated in the Hub student dining area outside Posvar Hall last year, but will now be sent to roam the campus and stop in such locations as Schenley Plaza, Schenley Quad and the Petersen Events Center.
All the barbecue selections will be handcrafted, with locally sourced and made ingredients, said Quintin Eason, who oversees dining at PittEats as vice president of operations at Chartwells Higher Ed, part of the Compass Group that Pitt brought on to manage dining last year.
The Hub on Posvar Patio, the outdoor dining location created last year to ease congestion in Litchfield Towers’ dining hall, is open again this year with Paper Lantern and Melt Lab.
“We're really excited about two new concepts in the Schenley food court (in William Pitt Union),” Eason said.
To replace Taco Bell and Pizza Hut, PittEats is adding the PA Taco Company and Wicked Pie.
PA Taco Company will be making its own tortillas, sauces and cheeses, and will be offering an international mashup of flavors, from masala tacos to smoked jackfruit tacos.
Wicked Pie is a farm-to-pizza concept, he said, where the outlet will make its own fresh mozzarella, pizza dough and sauce — even growing their our own basil on site.
Also new in the fall will be hot, ready-to-go meals in the Forbes Street Market, which will give more meal-exchange flexibility to students, offering such choices as grilled chicken with rapini and roasted potato salad.
Eason said the only COVID-19-related dining restrictions this year will be for those who need to be quarantined for 10 days due to Pitt regulations — upon arrival or if a student contracts the illness.
“We should be returning back to normal in some capacity,” he said. “We’re ready to proceed with a normal dining experience.”
Faculty and staff can eat at Pitt’s two main dining halls — in Litchfield Towers and Sutherland Hall — if they participate in the Lunch Money program.
The University Club also is open again for dining, including the 1923 Café, which is available to members and nonmembers.
Also new this year are two Saxbys coffee shops, which are expected to open in early September on the ground floors of the Cathedral of Learning and Hillman Library.
The student-run coffee stands will replace the Cathedral Coffee and the Cup and Chaucer at the library.
Two business students — senior Ceari Robinson and sophomore Angel Albright-Sexton — are the student cafe executive officers of the Hillman and Cathedral locations, respectively, for the fall term. They will each manage nearly 40 student employees, along with all aspects of running their cafe, from team development to community outreach to financial reports. Both will earn competitive wages, bonus opportunities and a full semester of college credit.
The Pitt cafes — the first Saxbys in the Pittsburgh area — are part of the coffee company’s Experiential Learning Program, which provides undergraduates with entrepreneurial opportunities as a supplement to traditional classroom learning. The program started at Philadelphia’s Drexel University in 2015 and has expanded to Penn State, Temple, La Salle, Millersville, West Chester and St. Joseph’s universities in Pennsylvania, and Bowie State University in Maryland.
Read more about Saxbys in Pittwire.
Farmer’s Market returns
The Farmers Market at Pitt is returning this fall with old and new vendors selling lunch, baked goods, produce, beverages and more.
The market will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the William Pitt Union Plaza starting Sept. 2 and running through October. All vendors accept cash, credit, debit, Dining Dollars and Lunch Money.
All meals are served in compostable containers, and composting drop-off is provided at no cost.
Marty Levine is a staff writer for the University Times. Reach him at email@example.com or 412-758-4859.
Have a story idea or news to share? Share it with the University Times.