The New(er) Sullivan Cafe

The Sullivan Café, opened at the beginning of the fall semester in the sub-basement of Sullivan Hall, recently underwent several renovations.

“The Caf√© originally opened in September before it was completed,” explained Ken Waldhof, the director of Auxiliary Services, “but due to the construction process it was determined it was best to close the Caf√© and reopen when it was completely built out and ready to provide its full array of services.

“We did not want to disappoint customers who might be turned off by the limited amount of products and offerings before everything was completed,” he continued.

Sodexho, the company that provides dining services for St. John’s, partnered with the school more than a year ago and expanded to include the Sullivan Caf√© because St. John’s wanted to “bring a new food service venue to the Sullivan Hall neighborhood and the new home of the School of Education,” Waldhof said.

He said that the University has accomplished this goal by creating a new Sullivan Caf√© that offers a variety of sandwiches, salads, beverages, snacks and baked goods. There is also a menu of hot panini sandwiches named after people and places famous in New York City and the St. John’s community.

The interior of the Caf√© is one of its most unique features. “It offers a casual yet contemporary style and quiet atmosphere with two corner booths, tables and chairs, and counter seating,” Waldhof said.

“I like the atmosphere and the sandwiches, but I wish there was more of a variety,” said Diane Tadros, a sophomore who said she has eaten in the caf√© about five times. “I also like that it never gets too crowded.”

Junior Nick Berardi agreed that the Caf√© has good atmosphere and added that “the food is fresh and definitely better than the food served in Montgoris.”

“[The Caf√©’s] location makes it convenient for those on that side of campus or in Sullivan or St. Albert Hall, which connects to Sullivan through a tunnel on the basement level,” said freshman Laura Dolce. “You basically have to go through a maze to get there. It took me a while to find it the first time.”

She added that Jazzman’s Caf√©, located in the library, has more of a selection.

Waldhof stated that the Café does a fair amount of business, but believes that as word gets out, more people will eat there.
“New and ongoing advertisements and promotions, plus customers spreading the word amongst friends will result in the Sullivan Caf√© fulfilling its objective to provide a convenient and comfortable dining option to the campus community,” he said.
Students Michelle Pinto and Kelly Grech said they decided to try dining in the Café for the first time after seeing a poster in Sullivan Hall and hearing from friends that it had good sandwiches.

“As it becomes more popular, I think the atmosphere and nice variety of products will entice more folks to dine in or take out from Sullivan,” Waldhof said. “As for others taking classes or working on the other side of campus, it’s probably not their first place to go, but it definitely fills a niche in the scheme of the campus.”