New Student Center café


Monte Vista first opened up the new Workday Student Center in the fall of 2013. The building, generously donated by the Duffields, gives MV students wonderful new opportunities with the new technology and benefits.

The new student center also has a cafe inside, with food different to that of the usual commons food. The menu includes new items, such as different salads, paninis, snacks, breakfast, and lots of different specials. New food items include a turkey and brie panini, a spicy buffalo chicken wrap, a Flamebroiler meal, and many more. Different specials have included a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup, and a Thai chicken meal with rice.

The menu for the new cafe is created in the SRVUSD Child Nutrition office, with the supervisors determining what should be on the menu. There are many daily standard items, but about every 4-5 weeks, there are a few new items shifted in and out to keep the interest level.

Kathleen Roth, Monte Vista’s nutritionist, helps oversee all of the food being served and prepared at MV. Although she doesn’t work directly in the cafe, she helps oversee and make decisions regarding it.

“We have different options in the cafe than in the commons. It’s more upscale stuff, but some of it is still prepared in the commons and sent up.”

The school was able to contract out new suppliers as the new building was not held under the same agreement for the commons.

The school already has contracts with Cisco, Berkeley Farms, and Danielson, just a few of the suppliers of the food products at Monte Vista. However, the Workday Cafe had a contract with the restaurant FlameBroiler to provide rice and meat bowls for lunch. FlameBroiler ended up closing in March so currently the cafe does not have any outside food suppliers to the cafe. According to Bruce Hall, the director of child nutrition for the SRVUSD, the district is looking for new outside vendors to supply food to the cafe. However, there are some problems with that.

“Between following the nutritional guidelines and the cost to get the Product Formulation Statement approved by the USDA, many outside don’t care to go through the process to provide a food item that we can purchase.”

All the guidelines for serving food in government facilities, such as schools, can make it more difficult for them to want to supply food to the schools, even if there is a profit.

On the economic side of the cafe, it seems as though it is breaking even regarding costs. It makes about $900 per day in sales, but with food, labor, and other costs that is subtracted from that profit, the cafe is just about hitting even. The cafe seemed to peak at the start, but the demand seems to be settling now.

Students seem to enjoy the new food though. Senior Justin Tsung buys lunch often from the cafe.

“I really like the new food that it offers,” Tsung said. “Even though the line is still pretty long, it’s nice to have different food options than in the commons. It’s also decently priced.”

Other though seem to think that it’s not worth buying food there.

“The line is always so long at lunch, and if I wait it out sometimes they run out of what I want,” junior Joseph Mileski said.

Despite some small complaints, the cafe seems to be a big hit with the students.