Thursday, October 11, 2012

Renovation and Reinvention of The Gazebo

The renovation and reinvention of The Gazebo, an on-campus eatery, puts Andrews University one step closer to meeting President Niels-Erik Andreasen’s challenge to become the healthiest university in the United States. The transformation of The Gazebo is the latest in a series of improvements in Andrews University’s Office of Dining Services. In 2008, the main food service area and Terrace Café dining rooms were renovated and in 2010, Bon Appétit Management Company was selected to manage Andrews University’s Dining Services.

The decision to renovate The Gazebo was made in February of 2011. Brett Pherson, retail manager for Dining Services, worked on the initial plans with Dick Scott, director of Plant Administration. Tri-Mark, one of the country’s largest providers of design services, equipment and supplies to the foodservice industry, produced the final plans. On Sept. 3, 2012, The Gazebo reopened with a fresh look, expanded equipment, a redesigned floor plan and a brand-new menu.

The footprint of The Gazebo didn’t change, but the space was reconfigured. A former storage room was transformed into an expanded kitchen area. Prior to the renovation, The Gazebo’s only cooking appliances were a fryer and a microwave. Since the remodeling, additional equipment allows for a much more diverse menu including a flattop grill, an open flame grill, conventional oven, fryer, steamer and salamander (a push-in toaster that heats food quickly). Several features, including the custom-made smoothie station inset into the counters and coolers/hot well built into the counters, were designed by Tri-Mark especially for The Gazebo.

Reinvented Menu
With more cooking equipment, the menu has not only expanded, it’s been reinvented. Last year there were approximately 15 menu items to choose from. Now there are almost 70, ranging from breakfast crepes and burritos, to a variety of salads and sandwiches. “Some of the students’ favorite items include smoothies, fresh salads, burrito wraps and our grilled pizzas,” says Daniels.

The recreated menu is the handiwork of Brett Pherson. According to Mark Daniels, general manager of Dining Services, Pherson’s experience as a chef was critical in the menu creation process. Daniels says, “He listened well at the end of last semester. He had his ears and eyes open to what the students were saying was important to them.”

Healthy Choices from Scratch-Made Dishes
The changes in menu options are also aimed to encourage healthier choices by giving customers healthier options. “In The Gazebo, a costumer is first exposed to the Smoothie Station followed by the Salad Bar before the other items, such as pizza, sandwiches and fries, which are all made from scratch with fresh ingredients, giving our customers a surplus of healthy options,” says Daniels.

Dining Services makes as much as possible from scratch and frequently sources food locally, including from the Andrews Farm. More than 150 students, along with 40 full-time staff, are employed at Dining Services, making it one of the largest employers at Andrews University.

All-Vegetarian and Vegan-Friendly
Both the Terrace Café and The Gazebo serve an all-vegetarian and vegan-friendly menu. Payment options include cash and credit, along with the option for Andrews students to charge their purchases to their meal plans.

The Gazebo is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m.–11 p.m., Fridays from 8 a.m. until one hour before sunset, Saturdays from 8–10 a.m. for a continental breakfast and again beginning one hour after sunset until 11 p.m. seasonally, and Sundays from 11 a.m.–11 p.m.

The Terrace Café is open Monday to Friday, 7–10 a.m., 11 a.m.–2:30 p.m. and 5–7 p.m. On Saturdays, it’s open from 12:30–2:30 p.m. and 6–7 p.m.; on Sundays, 10:30 a.m.–2 p.m. and 5–7 p.m. Hours vary when classes are not in session.

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Berrien Springs, Michigan 49104