North Campus, known to administration as “that place we are definitely not going to allow you to call ‘The Jungle,’” is classic UConn: quirks, curiosities, occasional bouts of chaos and immaculate landscaping. North Campus Dining Hall has a similar feeling of the classic and endearing.
The dining hall is a giant open room jutting out of McConaughy Hall, elevated over the North quadrangle. You get a slight sensation that you’re on top of the world. Combine that with the stately painted brick walls and columns with bright banners, and it has an atmosphere somewhere between the dining room on the Titanic and a relatively high-end high school cafeteria.
Monday’s enchiladas were a nearly perfect tube of spice and sass. The flour tortilla becomes drenched down in the salsa, but you can just interpret that as the food being proud of its flavor.
The scrod was almost flavorless, but in the way that fish should be, with a pleasant texture and delightful breading. The potatoes were similarly bland, but substantial.
North’s heart, soul and ligaments are its grilled chicken, available at every meal. They’re more so a gift to college nutrition than college cuisine. Think of them as protein lumps, pure gains. It’ll build muscle! It’ll clear skin!
Other staples are sandwiches and pizza. The pizza is super passable, but the sandwiches rank in the top of their class. Some days you get a classically tasty pastrami Reuben. Some days you get the novel and surprisingly delicious grilled apple cheese.
North has a weekly crepe bar and a few oddball festivals every semester. Last year they featured an International Sandwich Day observance, Applefest, “Frozen” movie dinner night and (my personal favorite) Everything-on-a-Stick Day.
The dining hall also boasts some of the friendliest valedians on campus. But those giant desks they added at the entrances over the summer break still weird me out a bit.
Christopher McDermott is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.