Lenoir Dining Reopens for Summer Sessions
Written by Virginia Summers for the Daily Mississippian on 6-19-15
Tables were set, napkins were folded and the aroma of fresh bread with caprese chicken greeted all who entered through the doors of Lenoir Dining as it reopened for the summer last week.
Lenoir Dining, an on-campus restaurant completely run by Ole Miss students in the Nutrition and Hospitality Management department, is now open for reservations Monday through Friday at 11:30 a.m. and 12:15 p.m.
“There is no other restaurant like this in terms of being student run, having truly great value and being at an affordable price,” said Beth Pace, food specialist and head chef of Lenoir Dining.
For the set price of $7 for University faculty, staff and students, and $10 for the general public, you can get a a full three-course meal, including a bread of the day, appetizer, multiple entree options and dessert. All tips are donated to the Nutrition and Hospitality Management student scholarship fund.
The restaurant is run by students enrolled in a class called Quantity Foods, a course that focuses on all aspects of running a business from the front to the back. Each day students are given a spreadsheet with their assigned title of waiter, table duty, host, cook, dish washing, among others.
“I don’t mind taking orders and being a host, but I would have to say my favorite place to be is in the back, running the kitchen behind the scenes.” Alex Garner, a Nutrition Dietetics major said as she looked at her classmates preparing meals through the kitchen door window. “No matter which position I am in I am always learning new skills. Customer service is what I have learned most.”
This is the last class Garner will take at Ole Miss before she graduates.
“I plan to move to Colorado,” Garner said. “I want to run a hotel’s restaurant or something of that sort, so this class teaches me everything I would need to know when I leave Ole Miss.”
Each week Lenoir Dining has themed restaurant experiences, which vary from BBQ or picnic to beach themed. These themes are incorporated into every aspect of the decorations, menu and overall presentation for that week.
“This program abbreviates a snapshot of how a restaurant works,” said Pace. “The skills being taught to these students are not just about cooking, they are about getting hands-on with the overall experience.”