Sodexo has had a long-standing partnership with Lyon throughout the campus, especially in the custodial department and the cafeteria. This year, however, Lyon College transitioned from Sodexo Dining Services to Creative Dining Services.
Junior Jaden Adams says switching from Sodexo has made the food taste better because Creative Dining uses more spices. She also mentioned the changes to the burger line. Under Sodexo, there was a line that always served burgers; now, this line has diversified. There is a variety of food available in the former ‘burger line’: chicken sandwiches, barbeque sandwiches, roast beef sandwiches, and more. The burgers are cooked in a new way that makes them taste better, too. She also mentioned the sandwich line changes. Creative is offering more filling options, but fewer types of bread and wraps. Jaden hopes Creative will put grilled chicken breasts and quesadillas on the menu. She said during previous years if she didn’t find anything she wanted she could go to a station that would have grilled chicken breasts prepared; there would also be quesadillas which was a healthier alternative to pizza. Along those lines, she would also like Creative to offer grilled chicken caesar salad because it is a healthier option than many offered items.
Freshman Molli Burden, along with many others, wishes there were more chicken products offered because it is often hard to find meals. She suggests that items such as chicken strips and popcorn chicken be offered more frequently, with the addition of chicken breasts.
Freshman Travis Johns says that the food tastes really good, but he would like there to be more variety. The options offered are similar from day to day, with limited opportunities to try new things. For example, the pasta station usually has red meat sauce and noodles. He says he would like it if there could be options such as alfredo pasta, chicken alfredo pasta, etc. He would also recommend more frequent Mexican cuisine, such as tacos, fajitas, enchiladas, and burritos.
It is difficult for vegetarian students to find healthy options. An anonymous vegetarian has stated that Creative offers only a few non-meat sources of protein, while carbs make up the majority of available choices. To remedy that, they recommend that veggie burgers be offered regularly, as they provide high amounts of fiber and protein, which help satisfy daily nutritional needs. The student also hopes to see a greater variety of vegetarian dishes offered.
Seniors Katelin Smith and Anna Beth Haney expressed their gratitude towards the new dining services, praising the improved flavor and wider range of meal choices compared with previous years. Anna Beth explained that before, the vegetables on the salad bar were less colorful, but since the change to Creative Dining, the lettuce is more fresh and there are more options.
Overall, reactions to Creative Dining have been very positive. For helping to get more feedback on what should be brought to the cafeteria, a ‘suggestions’ board has been placed placed by the dish area.