Dining services surveys students to curate new restaurant

The George Sherman Union Food Court will soon add street food to its menu when Boston University Dining Services unveils its newest restaurant, Takin’ it to the Street.

What was formerly the Amalfi Oven pizza restaurant, Takin’ it to the Street will now serve food similar to Boston’s food trucks, offering items such as Fish N’ Chips and Spicy Chicken Empanadas, said BU’s Director of Dining Services Barbara Laverdiere in an email.

“The mix of concepts at the Union Court changes based primarily on two factors: student feedback and sales,” Laverdiere said. “Unlike most concepts at the GSU, Takin’ it to the Street will offer a small menu with only a few items each week. This menu will change weekly like the Loose Leafs themes but unlike Loose Leafs, which only serves salads, the menu at Street will offer a variety of food items.”

Takin’ it to the Street will serve food that is portable and easy to eat on the go, and with the weekly schedule, students will experience several different types of cuisine throughout the semester, Laverdiere said.

“These items will not be prepackaged or prepared in advance; each menu item will be cooked to order,” she said. “Most of the menu items will be foods that travel well and can be eaten without utensils.”

Dining Services used student surveys and focus groups to create the concept for the restaurant, Laverdiere said, a process that started with online surveys administered to undergraduate students.

“It was clear that no one cuisine was most preferred. With such a diverse population at Boston University, it is important that the dining program offer a diverse portfolio of food concepts in order satisfy the culinary needs of as many students as possible,” she said. “The best solution to meet most students’ interests was to have a concept that would have a rotating menu featuring cuisine from throughout the world.”

While Takin’ it to the Street is still under construction, Laverdiere said they are hoping to open the restaurant “as soon as possible.”

Several students said they consider the GSU to be a melting pot for people of different ages, majors and ethnicities, and they are looking forward to the changes Dining Services are making.

College of Arts and Sciences junior Sophia Goldberg said she was excited to see what types of menu items Takin’ it to the Street offers.

“I would hope to see some forms of Mediterranean foods and gyros and stuff,” she said. “When you think of street foods, you think of foods that are easy to take to go. There’s also something missing ethnic-wise. We have pizza and soup and Thanksgiving dinner every day but there’s definitely other cultures’ food that we could have here [at the GSU].”

College of Communication junior Samantha Knox said she looks forward to a change in the GSU’s daily offerings.

“I’d like any food that is different from what is already here,” she said. “I mean, we have the salad place here, but I’d like some other tasty healthier options, too.”

Gulvira Montayeva, a second-year graduate student in the Metropolitan College, said she is also looking forward to a more diverse selection of dishes at the food court.

“When you come to the GSU, you can see people of all different kinds of ethnicities and races,” she said. “It’s nice to see that reflected in the food that is served for us.”


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