Sage Dining

Sage+Dining

Sage dining has been happily serving St Thomas for the past couple years being the group of happy faces that serve both lunch and breakfast to many students daily. The catering service shows up at school before anyone else does to prepare meals and snacks for students and staff to enjoy throughout the day and are always the last group of people to leave campus after staying after school to provide snacks and clean up the kitchen after a long day of catering. While the workers and the service they provide to the students could not be any nicer, there have been some problems with both the quality of the food and the price they have charged for it that is slowly leading to students wanting to bring their own lunch.

One problem that has recently affected the students who buy lunch from school is the cost of the food that they are buying on a routine basis. When I purchase lunch from Sage Dining, it often costs about ten dollars or more of food products. If I chose to buy breakfast in the morning, my meal will be around seven dollars or more. Many other students and I have really become aware of the high prices ever since the portion sizes were supposedly decreased and often come back to the lunch line for a second helping.

“Ever since Sage decreased the portion size, I often find myself buying two meals from the main ingredient as well as having to purchase a beverage.” Josh Caldwell ‘23 said.  One meal that I recently noticed had an extreme decrease in portion size is a student favorite, General Tso’s Chicken. Earlier this year and in my previous two years at St Thomas, General Tso’s Chicken would be served with approximately 15 small chicken bites, 5 pieces of broccoli, and rice. However, when it was recently on the menu again, I had noticed that the price of the food did not match the amount of food that I received that day at lunch. After this occurrence, I went to ask my friends if they had noticed the same thing about the meal that day and they agreed that the portion size had decreased. Sage Dining should revert to their old portion sizes so that they can both have correlating prices and portions, and students will be less likely to retrieve a second helping that will at least cost another seven dollars.

Over the last two years, the quality of food that Sage Dining has produced has drastically decreased as many students have converted to either bringing their own food to school. “By packing my own food, I am able to control how much I eat, what I eat, and how much I spend on my lunch. If I were to buy Sage Dining, I wouldn’t have the freedoms that I do when packing my lunch. Sometimes I am forced to buy a meal I do not like and other times it is too expensive; bringing my own lunch helps me control all aspects of my food” said Thomas Pham ’23. The quality of the food during my first year at St Thomas was      drastically better than it is now. The primary issue that I have notices with the quality of the food is that most of the time it tends to be overcooked. For example, the chicken tenders seem to be cooked to a crisp and it feel as if every bite I take has more breading than it does chicken.

“Most days at lunch I purchase the main ingredient because I have become tired of being serve chicken tenders day in and day out” said Ryan McGuire. When I am forced to settle for the chicken tenders instead of the main ingredient, I always find myself to be less satisfied with my food as there no excitement of trying something new and possibly having another favorite meal on the menu. The catering service also seems to bring items back on the menu that are purchased the most by students, in contrast to adding new items that might would create a new favorite amongst the students. Adding new items to the menu would also encourage students to venture out beyond the traditional chicken tender and fries that many of them continue to purchase daily.

At the end of the day, Sage Dining fulfils a great responsibility of showing up to St Thomas for over ten hours and can supply the students with more food that they can ask for. While the prices do not always correlate with the portion size and Sage does tend to reuse most of the main meals, it’s consistent and we know what kind of food we are going to get every time we step into that lunch line to please out appetite. In the future, I believe that if Sage can cut back on their prices and start to introduce new meals and snacks, that they will see more students start to purchase lunch from the school in contrast to bringing their own.

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