Even though most Wake Forest students elect to eat the same exact thing every time they go to the Pit — I’m talking about you, omelet people — they now have an extensive variety of customizable options to choose from.
These new options are all a part of Wake Forest Campus Dish’s “Performance Dining” plan which encourages students to add more variety of nutrients into their diets. But then again, these same options now allow students to put bacon on flatbreads. I highly recommend doing this, as well as trying these other new features the next time you visit the dining hall.
Perhaps the most extensive overhaul at the Pit has taken place at the salad bar. More options such as pulled chicken breast, tuna and steamed salmon have been added to the typical line of fruits and veggies. In addition, the spices and herbs now reside near the salad dressings, inviting students to add new flavor profiles to their dishes. Most importantly, however, may be the new smoothies and other fruit toppings added to the yogurt station. These are blended to be tasty, as well as nutritious. Some other changes are of less importance and, arguably, take away from the improved salad bar. These changes include the addition of a bread box which may be used to make wraps or other cold sandwiches from the salad line. Since there is already a deli case with a good number of ingredients, I do not see why this is necessary. And besides, it slows down the flow of the line when someone swings the bread box door open, knocking out the person standing behind them. Furthermore, the new selection of Pure Leaf teas and specialty waters hidden at the corner of the bar also fail to excite me.
Pizza and Pasta Bar
Although the salad bar has seen the biggest renovation over the past summer, the new pizza and pasta bar may take the prize for the greatest improvement. The pasta bar now features more ingredients and a greater flow. Now one can begin in the line, continue moving and end up with a completed dish of pasta rather than placing their entire order and then waiting. The section retains its typical ready-made pastas, pizzas and strombolis, but also adds a create-your-own-flatbread option. With a limited number of ingredients available, this is not really an avenue for making a flatbread the likes of which the world has never seen. However, if you are someone who craves a green pepper and pineapple flatbread, then this option may be for you. The lighting around the bar has also improved, creating a nicer food presentation that makes me find the whole section much more appetizing.
While this improvement may not be the one students recognize right away, the new products certainly revamp the taste of the food and improve the sustainability. Now the Pit sources its meat and poultry from local suppliers who shop from local farmers and ranchers. This cuts back on emissions and creates a product that is healthier for everyone.
One new product, on the other hand, is coming from a little further away than in the past: the bagels. Once sourced from the local Bagel Station bakery, bagels make the trip all the way from Raleigh each day to end up on your breakfast plate. While we will all miss those chewy, crusty Bagel Station bagels, the new ones offer a good taste and passable texture in addition to new gluten free options.
One may notice the different seating options at the dining hall, providing students a sneak peek at what the Pit may look like in the not-so-distant future. Among these new seating options that students get to vote on are circular couches, stools and padded chairs. Replacing the old-school cafeteria feel and replacing it with one of a restaurant or cafe seems to be the priority of the new seating options. While I do not love any of them, I would enjoy a nicer looking seating area. The current setup featuring wooden chairs and long tables is not the most comfortable.
That being said, my biggest concern is that the struggle to find a seat in the Pit during the lunch hour will only get worse with the new seating. Nonetheless, I probably will graduate before any of these seating changes come into fruition, so the problem of finding a seat with the new setup will likely fall on the lap of the freshman class of Demon Deacons.
Other students chimed in on the changes at the Pit, most with only good things to say. Sophomore Jasmine Roby loves the new products on the salad bar and pasta station.
“My new favorites are the ravioli on the pasta line and the quinoa and steamed salmon on the salad bar. The new options are delicious while the old stuff has remained good.”
Even though we may not agree on the best seating scenario at the Pit, one thing we can agree on is that they have worked hard to make the dining experience a more customizable and pleasing one. With all of the delicious new options, even those who rarely stray from their go-to plate might considering venturing off to try something different.