Marlborough girls love food. With the opening of Café M last year, many girls began to forgo their home-packed lunches in favor of the new salad bar and personal pizzas. As we head into our first full year with the new Café, business seems as strong as ever, with lunch crowds still overflowing the space to the point where it’s practically impossible to walk through.
The only thing we love more that the food at Café M is “novelty” food, like that served at events such as EAST Feast or the AACE Soul Food lunch. We held these feasts before the opening of Café M, when we still had the old cafeteria; they’ve become part of Marlborough tradition. But these old traditions butt heads with the new cafeteria. During EAST Feast last year, much of the student body fled to the East Atrium to purchase plates of homemade Asian cuisine, leaving a fully staffed Café M with an excess of unprepared food to go to waste on a Friday afternoon.
Scenarios like this have led to a new policy regarding “feasts.” According to Auxiliary Services Manager Clinton Oie, feasts serving full lunches can only be held on Mondays, so any unprepared food in the Café can be cooked the following days. This will reduce our amount of food waste, consistent with our commitment to “going green.”
Additionally, Oie recommends that if you plan to serve outside food items at a feast, you give the first bid to CulinArts, the company that staffs our cafeteria. For example, if you want to serve pizza at your feast, get a quote from CulinArts for making the pizzas before purchasing them from, say, Z Pizza on Larchmont.
We would like to commend the administration for this environmentally and financially friendly policy. This is the first time Marlborough has worked with a catering company like CulinArts, so we praise the school’s efforts to best utilize our new guests and cafeteria space.
Additionally, it seems that rather than unintentionally take business away from our school Café, the school has decided to cut back its service on days when certain feasts are held. When the Kogi Truck came to school on Sept. 29th, for example, the Café served only cold sandwiches and salads instead of hot lunches.
This system benefits everyone; the Kogi Truck didn’t have to compete with the cheaper Café for the lunchtime rush, the Café didn’t waste unprepared food and all the students left with full stomachs.
While we may have to limit the number of feasts this year in order not to cut too far back on the Café, we support the school’s efforts to reconcile its services with our love for “novelty” food. We love our food, and there’s no reason to let it become a source of conflict.