Listen my children and you shall hear
Of a fable about food and fear.
On the 7th of October in 2008
A group of students arrived sans Freshers weight.
How little they understood,
How little they cared,
About the nutrition concerns
their parents would soon air.
I’m not going to lie,
To fib or to deny
That once you’re in York’s snare.
Steak ordered will never come out rare.
So gather my children
Round the campfire
And listen to the grub wisdom
I have acquired.
Despite everyone coming to University for different reasons, most people aim to become an expert in at least one thing. Some aim to become a connoisseur in what a friend of mine describes as ‘panty peeling’, others intend to develop their VK palate and some will even desire to master their reading list. While I would hesitate to detract from the nobility of any of these goals, I must admit that I have spent the past two years becoming an expert on campus food, if I do say so myself.
Vanbrugh – Vanbrugh will always have a special place in my heart, possibly due to the vicinity of the Nouse office. Many a time I have stumbled into the cafe in search of a baguette, safe in the knowledge that no matter how rough I feel, someone else will look worse. And, in a campus eatery, one takes comfort in such matters.
The baguettes, while mayonnaise soaked, aren’t bad although a little expensive. The real food (usually roast or vegetarian option) is good old fashioned Yorkshire stodge and reasonably priced. On Sunday, they do Sunday roast. Every day, some sort of hot pudding is served, with custard, which offers all of the comfort of home with none of the parents.
B Henry’s – Although this may result in a very angry message from the Alcuin JCRC about betraying my college roots, I feel my independence as a reviewer must be preserved at all costs. I’m like the Nellie Bly of food. Ish.
Anyway, I digress. Cheesy chips are good (standard fare on our dear campus) and I’m told the sandwiches are edible. Mostly, though, this cafe is frequented by staff and post-grads. It’s also a little cold and clinical but a refurbishment may be in the works.
The Courtyard – my personal fave. The place where everyone knows your name, where the food is cheap and the bartenders are always there with a cheeky smile and quick cup of coffee. Somewhere to mourn the bad times and celebrate the good. Also, the only place I’ve come across where liquid lunches are standard between lectures and there is plenty of people watching. For some reason, this is the place where break-up chats, get-back-together chats, and massive housemate rows all go down.
Although the menu changes pretty frequently, the burgers and painnis are firm favourites. The breakfast is pretty good as well (especially bacon sandwiches) although it does involve getting out of bed before midday. This place is always crowded during lunch but it can be nice for dinner and drinks especially if you can’t be bothered to go off campus.
Derwent – watch this space! Derwent has been usually refurbished with a Costa and new bar over the Summer, so for now, your guess is as good as ours!
Roger Kirk – this place resembles an airport lounge that is completely empty most of the time. The food is greasy (pizza and chips five days a week) and you have to pay for ketchup which happens to be a personal pet peeve of mine. This being said, the cake is amongst some of the best on campus and you can always get a seat so it’s not all bad.
Wentworth – a college so far away from fresherdom, you’ll probably never venture. It’s a mythical location under a veil of mystery wrapped up with a bow of vagueness. Or something like that. The curry is raved about and the coffee’s pretty good.