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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Village diner on hold

Stein to extend hours after construction plans rejected

Published: January 18, 2008
Section: Front Page, News

The January opening of a late-night eatery in the Village, now called “Ollie’s Eatery,” was postponed over winter break after architects’ plans for the eatery’s ventilation systems failed to meet building code regulations. According to Union officials, the proposed menu and hours for the new eatery will be implemented in the Stein restaurant.

Union Director of Research and Development Sridatta Mukherjee ’09, an original spear-head of the proposal, said, “they’re back to the drawing board in terms of the regulations.”

“Local safety officials had concerns with the designed system [of the ventilation system] and its routing through the Village residence hall,” explained Mike Newmark, Director of Dining Services.

Both Mukherjee and Newmark stated there was no set deadline for the next draft of architectural plans. “We’re still trying to have a diner in that space,” Mukherjee added. “It’s really up to [the architects.]”

However, Mukherjee said, while “the diner has been pushed back as of now… to compensate, Aramark is opening up the Stein.” She stated the Stein will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 10pm to 3am with the diner’s proposed menu, closing for one hour at 9pm to accommodate for the change.

“They need that time to set up the kitchen because it’s a whole-new menu,” said Mukherjee. “To do whatever needs to be done… just infrastructure stuff.”

In earlier interviews, Mukherjee had previously stated the menu of the new diner will overlap with other on-campus eateries as little as possible, and will include options such as breakfast food.

“It’s going to be everything that we wanted at the diner, except at the Stein,” she said. “It’s going to be new uniforms, the name’s going to be different… everything will be different.”

Student response was mixed. “It will be nice that the Stein will be open so late with a different menu. The different menu idea mixes things up a bit, and I think that people will really take advantage of the new extended hours,” said Harley Yanoff ’08. “If the Village eatery has to be postponed, I think this concept of using the Stein as a temporary substitute will be very successful.”

Leor Galil ’08 commented, “it’s just kind of odd really…I don’t know why they wouldn’t [extend Stein hours] beforehand.”

“I’ve been looking forward to this since before they even had the idea,” said Ziv resident Jill Seplowitz ’08. “It really annoys me but I’m not surprised…what frustrates me is that someone made a mistake…they should not have gotten my hopes up.”

The Union will hold a “soft opening” of the Stein’s new hours and menu on Wednesday Jan. 23, Mukherjee added, followed by a grand opening the following week.

“It was not a decision on Brandeis’ part,” Mukherjee stated. “Now that we’re back, we’re working on what will be the next best option until we can get the next drawings and see what has to be done.”

Alison Channon contributed to this report.