• Lillie Burke

Belmont dining options expanded on and off campus

Belmont’s dining options have expanded this year with the addition of two notable franchises: Papa John’s Pizza and McAlister’s Deli in the Curb Café.

Papa John’s replaces Quiznos, while McAlister’s is a new stand-alone addition.

These changes were made based on what Kyle Grover, director of dining services at Belmont, called brand life cycles.

“Most brands go through life cycles of about three to five years,” Grover said. “Quiznos and W.O.W were installed at the Curb in 2008. We knew that it was time for a change.”

Grover and his team based their decisions on student opinions acquired through campus surveys.

The majority of students wanted a dining option more along the lines of a true restaurant, Grover said. This is what ultimately led to McAlister’s being on campus.

When considering dining options for campus, Grover and his team also look at restaurants in students’ hometowns to get an idea of what they enjoy.

“We start with a ZIP code,” he said. “We see what restaurants have locations in various hometowns, then we compare them to what most students on campus enjoy eating. It’s all about staying current.”

But there was different reasoning behind the Papa John’s choice.

“As for Papa John’s, well we’ve always wanted to bring some kind of choice for pizza onto main campus,” Grover said.

Papa John’s has been an off-campus partner with Belmont for 10 years, and so it seemed the perfect choice to replace Quiznos, he said.

The new dining options are the beginning of a rebranding campaign for Belmont that will span the next several years, Grover said.

In addition to the Curb Café, Belmont students can now use Bruin Bucks at several new locations off campus, including Chago’s Cantina, Sweet CeCe’s and Sunset Grill.

There are plans to put a Chick-fil-A, Starbucks Coffee Company and another restaurant that hasn’t been named yet in the new Wedgewood Academic Center, Grover said.

He and his team expect these larger, more well-known chains will remain on campus longer than the typical three- to five-year lifespan.

“We’ve really turned up the heat this year,” Grover said.

Here is a full list of where Bruin Bucks are accepted off campus: Sweet Cece’s – 1708 21st Ave. South Subway – 1703 Portland Ave. GoGo Sushi – 2057 Scarritt Place Nomzilla! sushi et cetera – 1201 Villa Place, Suite 101 Noshville (Midtown location) – 1918 Broadway Papa John’s – 2316 West End Ave. Kalamata’s – 1703B Portland Ave. The Jam Coffeehouse – 1210 Wedgewood Ave. Sunset Grill – 2001 Belcourt Ave. Noshville (Green Hills location) – 4014 Hillsboro Circle Chago’s Cantina – 2015 Belmont Blvd.

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