Case Hall's cafeteria reopens
Criminal justice freshman Gage Grindler and kinesiology senior Brittany Hardecki enjoy dinner at the grand opening of the South Pointe Cafeteria at Case Hall on Sunday night. South Pointe offers a variety of cuisine made with ingredients from Michigan.
There’s something new cooking at Case Hall.
MSU’s latest drive to enhance its dining services can be seen at South Pointe cafeteria, which officially opened Sunday. The $20 million renovation project — which included some funding used to update the building’s fire and life safety services — features five food venues and ample seating.
“(South Pointe) is really more of an extension of your living space,” said Guy Procopio, director of Culinary Services. “We wanted different eating environments so that students can have different dining experiences.”
The cafeteria is open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Sunday this semester.
When guests arrive at either the cafeteria’s north or south entrance, they’re greeted with the centerpiece of the facility, Great Lakes Plate, a new food venue featuring regional food options.
Kinesiology sophomore Kimberely Le prepares food to be served Sunday afternoon at the newly opened South Pointe cafeteria in Case Hall.
The new Southpointe Cafeteria located in Case Hall held its grand opening in January 2012. Aaron Snyder/The State News.
A bowl of dirt cake awaits to be eaten at the grand opening of Southpionte cafeteria in Case Hall. Samantha Radecki/The State News
One of the popular new attractions added to the newly constructed Southpointe Cafeteria located in Case Hall is the Salad + Sushi bar. The cafeteria held its grand opening Sunday evening. Aaron Snyder/The State News.
Procopio said officials looked toward being local and sustainable when sourcing food at the venue — from fruits to meats to vegetables across the Great Lakes region.
Other MSU mainstays, including Brimstone Grille and S2, feature burgers, sandwiches and salads.
Seating ranges from meeting tables under large driftwood light fixtures to more intimate areas.
A renovated Sparty’s Convenience Store completes the project with access to the store from inside Case Hall or from the outside at the north side of the building.
Don Donagrandi, dining services manager for South Neighborhood, not only stressed the importance of being local, but keeping up with the times when considering new facilities.
Dining facility enhancements continue next with Shaw Hall, Procopio said.
The cafeteria is expected to go offline in May and re-open in January 2013.
Brody Square opened in fall 2010 at a cost of $49 million, Procopio said.
Although some might question officials spending millions on dining at MSU, Donagrandi said it’s about meeting student needs when they live on campus — no more serving food behind walls.
“It’s been a plan that has been going on for years, ever since The Gallery (at Snyder and Phillips halls) opened,” Donagrandi said. “We have facilities, some that are 40 … 50 years old, and it was time to change with the times.
“Now, it’s more about the fresh interactions of the chefs with the students.”
When classes are in full swing today, sous chef Jim Cummings said he expects to serve upwards of 1,000 plates for breakfast and even more during lunch.
“We’re really going to be tested Monday at 12:30 p.m.,” he said. “My hair might be on fire. That’s what I’m worried about.”
During the weekend, students were given a sneak peek at South Pointe, and accounting sophomore Erica Sherwood liked what she saw — and tasted.
“It’s really nice, kind of like a mini Brody (Square),” she said. “Because it’s new, I wanted to check it out. Because there are so many options, you don’t have to wait forever in one line.”