Food is the answer to everything. Luckily, here at UC San Diego, you have quite a few options to satisfy whatever cravings you have, though it may be a bit chaotic trying to navigate your way through each dining hall. So for the new freshmen and transfers out there trying to figure out UCSD’s food scene, this is for you.
1. Foodworx (Sixth College) is a one-stop spot to grab a quick meal on the go. Think of the small food section in a gas station, but about three times healthier. On one side, you have salads and wraps and, on the other, sandwiches. Additionally, the back of Foodworx offers daily specials like quesadillas and Sante Fe chicken sandwiches, along with personal pizzas.
The salad section has five standard menu options and three standard menu options for wraps. Meanwhile, the other side boasts a B.Y.O.S.S, or a build your own sandwich station, along with a bagel bar. Sadly, the bagel bar is only open Tuesdays, Thursdays, and weekends.
2. 64 Degrees (Revelle College), I do adore. One of the better dining halls, 64 Degrees has an array of options to appease your hunger. Craving some tacos? Check. Asian food? Check. Traditional burger, fries, and a milkshake? Triple check. Want to treat yourself to a nice dinner? You can do that here with choices between chicken, New York steak, Korean BBQ ribs, salmon, and more. I recommend checking out their daily menus ahead of time to see what they are offering before making the trek there.
Not only is the food good, but 64 Degrees’ modern aesthetic is appealing to the eye. The area is spacious and well-lit, with plenty of booths and tables to sit at. Iron mesh curtains section off and enclose smaller areas with couches and ottomans for those who like to lounge and eat in a more enclosed space.
3. Café Ventanas (Eleanor Roosevelt College) has you dining under high vaulted ceilings and a warm, sophisticated ambience. Treat yourself to some tri-tip steak, chicken, or burgers.
If you’re looking for someplace that has the “nice restaurant feel” but you have no cold hard cash, go to Café Ventanas. Impress your date and buy them a nice meal and pretend that both of you are not broke college students.
4. Pines (Muir College), oh how I pine for your food. This dining hall has a warm, comfortable, and homey feel to it, with tables and seats situated close together and chatter constantly filling the air. Pines has a whole variety of foods to choose from, like a delectable taco salad—essentially a taco but “healthified”-—from its Cantina, delightful pastas from the Trattoria, scrumptious stir fry, and tasty sandwiches from the deli.
Pines has the other dining halls beat in pastas and sandwiches. The deli section is no joke, with fresh meat and multiple sandwich fixings. They don’t cheat you when it comes to guacamole or bacon either. Pines is also one of the few places with a dessert bar, and it has knocked itself out of the park with yummy cookies, bars, and cakes.
5. The hip dining hall Canyon Vista (Warren College) is situated so that an outdoor terrace overlooks a canyon. Stop by the grill and order a burger or chicken sandwich. The sushi is swell, and the rolls are slightly larger than normal, which is always a plus. The pasta they offer has the sauce already mixed in, so there is not much freedom of choice if you want more sauce or less sauce. Also, the “garlic bread” borders on cheese bread. So again, go to Pines if pasta and garlic bread is your vibe.
Most dining halls have their own specialty, but Canyon Vista is a good middle ground in my opinion. You can’t go wrong by making a stop there every so often to get your fill.
6. Last but not least… OceanView Terrace (Marshall College). The recently renovated aesthetic dining hall is washed in white and tinged with yellow, and provides a view of the ocean, as its name suggests. However, it is not as grand of a view as you may think.
Three kitchens provide food inside this dining hall: Spice Station, Scholars Pizza, and Counter Culture. Spice Station serves a variety of foods to spice up your life, 3rd Kitchen provides made-to-order pizza to fulfill any of your pizza fantasies, and Counter Culture has the dessert fix, with gelato, cheesecakes, and a variety of coffees as well.
While most—if not all—the dining halls serve pizza, OceanView is the place to go for pizza because it is customizable.
All in all, the dining hall scene isn’t too shabby here at UCSD. For the most part, there is a diverse set of choices for students to choose from. Ranging from healthy salads at Foodworx to personalized pizzas at OceanView, students can satisfy most of their cravings that they are plagued with during their stay here at UCSD.
Mandy Huang is a contributing writer of the Arts and Entertainment section for The Triton.