What does it take to open a food service business? Eric Winn ’04 ’14Tu and Mike Parshley ’14Tu discovered that it took a whole lot of planning and teamwork, as well as a fair share of technical difficulties. For 18 months, Eric and Mike have led a team of grads and undergrads in developing Dartmouth’s very first, completely student-managed food truck, whimsically christened “The Box.”
This Wednesday, after a week’s delay due to a broken wheel, the Box finally parked itself outside Russell Sage and opened its doors–or, rather, windows–for lunch. A colorful chalkboard menu offered a variety of healthy, Mediterranean-fusion options, while several friendly students took orders and assembled the dishes.
According to Eric, the Box team is “ecstatic” to finally launch. Executive Chef Tyler Harvey added, “It’s been amazing having the undergraduate and the graduate integration and seeing how seamlessly that relationship came together.”
Tyler was the mastermind behind menu development. Amid her worries about moving back to her hometown of Hanover from Washington, D.C. was the lack of “quick and substantial, but also clean and healthy food options.” This inspired her to combine farm-fresh ingredients with Mediterranean cuisine.
After a morning of classes on Wednesday, my stomach was practically begging for something quick and substantial. I obliged with a crushed falafel sandwich and a chocolate chip salted oat cookie from the Box.
The sandwich—homemade falafel, mixed greens, red onion, hummus and fennel-tomato salsa, stuffed inside a whole-wheat pita—was incredible. It contained the perfect amount of sauce (everyone knows there’s nothing worse than dry pita). Good news for the diet-restricted: each dish is available on a bed of local greens or gluten-free grains, and vegan options abound!
Though the pita was extremely filling, I still somehow managed dessert. The cookie was lightly salted and not too sweet, and the oats relieved some of my dessert-eater’s-guilt (oats equal healthy, right?).
Are you drooling yet? Luckily, the Box is open next to Silsby Monday through Friday for lunch and Wednesday and Thursday for dinner. Eventually, it will expand to cover late night. The menu is still in development, so keep your eye out for upcoming menu items, such as their late night matzoh 3 cheese flatbread (add some culture to your drunchies!). Bad news: They don’t accept DBA or DA$H yet, so remember to bring cash, card, or Square Wallet.
You know how your parents taught you never to accept food from a stranger in a white van? This doesn’t count. Do it, you won’t regret it.
Location: Between Silsby Hall and Russell Sage
Hours of operation: Mon-Fri 11am-2pm, Wed-Thu 5pm-7:30pm