Rockin’ lava shrimp, Vegas fries, and Cabo fish tacos. These are just a few of the culinary masterpieces soon to be introduced to students at Montclair State University by the Food Network's very own chef extraordinaire, Guy Fieri.
That’s right, students. Montclair State will be the birthplace of this new exciting concept for on-campus dining. Sodexo, the Gaithersburg, Maryland-based food company, has teamed up with Fieri to open 15 restaurants on college campuses across the country.
Guy Fieri On Campus is expected to open in mid-to-late October. It will be located in the newly renovated Blanton Hall plaza, which recently received a full facelift including new paint, floors, bathrooms, and eating area lounge. The campus’ first Dunkin Donuts will also be located in Blanton.
“Excited is an understatement, I can’t wait for the new food,” said senior Staci Telep.
Fieri, who owns two restaurants in California—Tex Wasabi with an Asian barbeque menu and Johnny Garlic’s with an Italian American culinary concept—will provide a masterpiece of options geared for college students.
Dr. Karen Pennington, the Vice President for Student Development and Campus Life, said the department made sure to get student input while working with Sodexo to bring Fieri on campus.
“Guy is about taking the ordinary and making it extraordinary," said Andrew Pignataro, Director of Auxiliary Services at MSU. "I can tell you that it will be a fun and exciting menu.”
Fieri and his culinary team are still working on the menu, but Pignataro said students could expect signature French fries, incredible sandwiches (Cubans, burgers, grilled cheese), macaroni and cheese, and other delights.
Fieri was unavailable for comment.
Students will be glad to know that just like other dining facilities on campus, the new restaurant will accept RedHawkdollars, and meal plan block swipes, along with cash and credit cards. Pricing is yet to be determined.
Representatives from Fieri's company indicated the famous chef wants to use locally grown crops and fresh ingredients in all of his culinary creations.
Although Montclair State students are generally pleased and excited for a new campus dining experience, some are concerned about the nutritional value of the menu.
“Montclair offers a variety of food, I’ll give it that,” said Brielle Buckman, a senior dietician major. “But their ‘healthy food’ as they like to put it, lacks flavor and is generally pre-packaged.”
Buckman’s perspective cannot be ignored. However, most students are excited and anxiously waiting to be the first to say they experienced Fieri’s latest dining experience.