April 18, 2017
By: Brandon Berry
This has been a heck of a year for me; making the transition from high school to college has been something I couldn’t have imagined. Keeping that in mind, I honestly did not know what to expect of the food here at Southwestern, even before I had been accepted. With every campus that I had toured prior to coming here, I had always made sure to eat on campus to get a sense of what I would be consuming for the next four years if I were to attend. This was a routine for every school I visited, but not with Southwestern.
I had heard about The Cove prior to the beginning of my orientation, but never made any attempts to try the food that they had. My parents and I had gone inside on a day that The Cove was closed and took a look at all they had to offer. At first it seemed a lot like every other snack-bar-type eatery: smoothies, a grill, and snack foods everywhere. So when I had to go there after the Commons closed, I knew I had a lot to choose from. It is now near the end of my first year here at Southwestern, and after trying nearly everything The Cove has to offer, I feel as if there are many positive and negatives things that are going on there.
On the positive side, it is nice to have a source of food on campus when the Commons is closed that operates on flexible hours. It’s very convenient for students who need a late-night snack, a place to study, or a place to unwind after a long day. In general, The Cove has a very good atmosphere, given how small the campus is and what’s available to use (Pool table, TV’s, shuffleboard, foosball, etc.). The staff is always friendly (at least to me), and I’ve never had any issues with anything I’ve purchased or ordered. I’ve had the ability to try different types of food including Bai tea, veggie burgers, portabella sandwiches, and sweet potato fries, just to name a few. It also has a bit of a convenience store feel from all the pre-made food and bottled drinks that are available, which comes in handy whenever I feel hungry and don’t have a lot of time to head back to my dorm.
On the other hand, there are some negatives when it comes to some of the items on the menu. This doesn’t have anything to do with the food itself, but some items could be prepared in a better way. For example, there have been numerous instances I’ve had where some of the ingredients for certain foods come out at cooler temperatures, despite being prepared on a warm grill. This includes items such as cheeseburgers where the cheese was not melted all the way, to instances where I’ve ordered quesadillas which were only warm for a few moments after being picked up. Another smaller issue that has come up before is the location of prices for various small items. Because I always use my Pirate Card, it is always good to know the prices for items I order. These negatives are things which I believe could be easily fixed. Overall, there are many good choices that are available at The Cove. It has a great atmosphere and some fun things to do to occupy your time. Given how small our campus is and the number of people on it, it’s a nice little eatery that’s easily accessible when the Commons isn’t open that I will continue to use for the next three years.