DUSDAC considers rearranging food truck lineup
Serrano Delicafe may be a contender for Merchants-on-Points, but its limited hours are holding DUSDAC members back.
- Baguettaboutit and Captain Poncho's scored low on the food truck survey.
- Foster's on the Fly could be bumped off food truck rotation to make room for Deli-icious.
The Duke University Student Dining Advisory Committee deliberated Monday on what food trucks and Merchants-on-Points restaurants should be recommended to Duke Dining for next year based on a survey administered to the student body.
Parlez-Vous Crepe and Foster’s on the Fly received the highest number of votes for favorite food trucks in the survey. Those receiving the lowest number of votes were Captain Poncho’s, Baguettaboutit and Chirba Chirba. Mac-Ur-Roni and Deli-icious had highest ratings as potential food trucks to be added. Among the lowest-rated Merchants-on-Points vendors were Skewers Hookah Bar and Grill, Palace International, Nosh and Pizza Mia Italian Grill.
DUSDAC members expressed concerns over the opening hours of Serrano Delicafe, a potential Merchant-on-Points vendor and a local delicatessen. The vendor’s Facebook page reveals that the restaurant has limited hours—it is closed on Sundays and Mondays. It is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 or 5 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays., from 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursdays and on Saturdays it is open from 4 to 11 p.m.
“That’s a lot of days when they are not delivering during prime hours,” said co-Chair of DUSDAC Chris Taylor, a senior.
Junior DUSDAC member Gregory Lahood noted that Serrano Delicafe could be a huge market for lunchtime delivery, especially for students who want to stay in their apartments and do not want to go out and get lunch.
Barbara Stokes, assistant director of dining operations, proposed solutions to the students’ concerns over Serrano’s operating hours.
“We could vote on Serrano contingent on their being able to deliver until at least midnight or on the weekdays. We will try to negotiate that,” Stokes said. “If they are willing to come to the table with what [DUSDAC] asked, we can sign the contract.”
The committee also discussed Skewers—which garnered the least votes from students among Merchants-on-Points vendors—and Pizza Mia, which the committee thinks will overlap with other pizza places on the list.
Some members noted that Skewers’ delivery is very slow and that Pizza Mia’s website is “very sketchy.”
Upon reviewing survey results for food trucks, the committee took note that the low rankings for Captain Poncho’s and Baguettaboutit were hard to differentiate. Based on the results of the survey, 12 percent of participants voted for Captain Poncho’s as their first choice and only five percent listed Baguettaboutit as their first.
Some members said that Captain Poncho’s should remain on the list because there are few Mexican food places on campus.
The committee also considered the similarity between Foster’s on the Fly and Deli-icious, a highly rated potential food truck from Raleigh that serves gourmet paninis.
“If we take off Foster’s, we’d be adding something similar,” Lahood said. “If we take off Ponchos we’d be adding something really different.”
Other members noted that the reason why Foster’s is popular is that it has a big name, but that its menu is limited and prices are high.
Committee members additionally considered the possibility of adding more than one food truck. Potential food trucks include Mac-Ur-Oni, Deli-icious, Bang Bang Banh Mi, Mama Duke’s and CJ’s Street Food.
“Adding another food truck would look good for us,” said sophomore DUSDAC member Abhi Shah, a contributing writer for The Chronicle. “It’s showing that we are taking actions to bring something new to us.”