VCUDine prioritizes safety while expanding on-campus dining options

Students will have three new restaurant options and see changes related to COVID-19 safety procedures.

The Twisted Taco restaurant located inside Laurel & Grace Place.
Students will have three new restaurant options and see changes related to COVID-19 safety procedures.

As the fall semester begins, students are seeing some changes to on-campus dining. In addition to new health and safety procedures for all locations because of COVID-19, the Virginia Commonwealth University community will also have three new on-campus restaurant options.

“We are so excited to bring these new restaurants to our students,” said Diane Reynolds, assistant vice president of VCU Business Services. “By introducing new safety features, like daily employee health checks and providing more dining options, our commitment to student health and safety remains strong.”

All campus dining locations now feature four contactless ways to pay, including the GET mobile app, VCUCard and Apple Pay or Google Pay. The dining team is also providing meals with Market 810’s to-go snack boxes and the new Shafer Express grab-and-go meals.

Changes also can be seen at restaurants across campus. After surveying dining plan holders last fall, VCUDine replaced IHOP with Twisted Taco. Twisted Taco will be located at Laurel & Grace Place on West Franklin Street along with Bento Sushi, which is taking the place of Croutons, Salads & Wraps. AVO Kitchen has taken the place of Cary Street Market and Deli at 101 S. Belvidere St. The newly renovated Jonah’s will also feature a new Tex-Mex station and made-to-order sandwiches.

Designed with VCU students’ health in mind, AVO Kitchen provides a variety of healthy dining stations including True Balance, dedicated to serving dishes made without seven of the top eight allergens.

“AVO Kitchen’s True Balance station is the first of its kind at VCU,” said Erin Thornton, VCUDine’s registered dietitian. “Dining with food allergies should not feel difficult, which is why it was important for us to provide ease and accessibility with AVO’s allergen solutions station.”

Twisted Taco offers Tex-Mex fusion. It will be serving the Rowdy Ram, VCU’s signature taco. Bento Sushi, which focuses on sushi products and hot Asian foods, is the campus’ first exclusive, stand-alone sushi restaurant. 

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