Student reviews Dining Hall at the Commons, offers hacks

Melissa Rosenthal, Staff Writer

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Dining room, gathering place for friends old and new, the heart and soul of the Tulane community: these are a few words that come to mind when describing the new Commons. 

This 77,000-square-foot spectacle features a bright and pleasant dining environment, a drastic improvement from the building’s drab predecessor. 

The wide array of seating options makes the Commons the place to be for every dining experience. Whether you are grabbing a quiet bite between classes or meeting with friends to catch up over dinner, there is a section for you. 

The facility features window-side tables for two, half-booth and table combinations, and high-top seating facing a beautiful plant arrangement for dining alone. 

Not only has the campus dining environment been elevated, but the food itself has greatly improved from the quality at Bruff Commons. The two-level dining hall features almost every cuisine from pastas to pastries. 

The upper-level test kitchen even attracts local chefs to serve various distinctive cuisines. 

Over the first week, this included gourmet salads and delicate scallop dishes. 

Weekend brunches feature southern comfort classics like shrimp and grits, pancakes, as well as yogurt parfaits and smoothies. Whether you are conscious about healthful eating, want to enjoy a classic cheese burger and fries or prefer to try local favorites, the Commons is sure to deliver.  

Here are a few tips and tricks to make the most of the new space on campus. 

  1. See the space for yourself. The University is offering guided tours of the new building over the next few weeks.
  2. Find your ideal dining spot. Whether you are dining with a large group or enjoying a quick meal by yourself, the Commons’ wide array of seating will accommodate your needs. The couches closest to the library are rarely busy. If you are looking for a quieter space away from the commotion of the serving areas, try this area of the building.
  3. If you can, avoid prime eating times — 10 a.m., 12-12:30 p.m., 6:30-7:30 p.m.. The space is flooded with people at these hours, and it may be difficult to grab your preferred meal if you are in a time crunch.
  4. Make sure to explore the third-floor Newcomb Institute space. The new NCI floor is home to the Friday’s at Newcomb Lectures and Newcomb programming. If you are looking for a new place to study after dining at the Commons, there are plenty of study spaces there as well.
  5. Check online at diningservices.tulane.edu for daily menus to find your ideal meal. This will save time if you are in a hurry between classes.
  6. Lastly, follow Tulane Dining on social media. Dining Services often promotes menu changes, special events and facility hours of all eateries.