New Supplier Opening at Lobdell Dining is scheduled to open on August 28
Anna’s Taqueria, previously located on the first floor of the Stratton Student Center, has closed its doors for good.
Anna’s opened on campus in February 2005 and closed at the student center in March 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic first closed the MIT campus.
Campus Dining Director Mark Hayes wrote in an email to Technology that Anna’s management informed MIT that it would not be able to reopen its student center this fall and that it could not provide a “firm timeline for resumption of operations.”
Betsy Kamio, owner of Anna’s Taqueria, wrote in an email to Technology that Anna was unable to continue running a business in the student center due to challenges with “new administration settings” and space challenges.
Kamio added that “MIT has decided” that the space “is not ideal for a restaurant” and instead “plans to turn the area into a student lounge.”
Hayes wrote that it’s possible Anna will return “at some point in the future,” but MIT will begin discussing “both temporary and permanent alternatives,” including potential uses for non-foodservice, for Anna’s space.
Kamio wrote that “it stings to have to close,” but the student center location was still Anna’s “best performing with breakfast sales” and that Anna “loved being able to stay open after hours. of course for study snacks in the late evening. ”
She added that Anna “would love to be able to reopen” in the student center “with a reasonable lease and proper space to cook on site.” Until then, Anna’s other six sites will continue to operate as usual.
In addition to Anna’s, Cafe Spice, Shawarma Shack and Shinkansen Bullet Train – all previously located at Lobdell Food Court on the second floor of the student center – will not reopen in the fall due to their contracts with MIT expiring during the pandemic.
The three restaurants will be replaced by vendors chosen through MIT’s Commonwealth Kitchen Launchpad and voted on by students in May 2021: Bibim Box, Carolicious and Las Palmas.
Bibim Box will serve Korean food in a price range of $ 10.00 to $ 13.00, Las Palmas will serve Caribbean-American food in a price range of $ 11.00 to $ 14.00 and Carolicious will serve Venezuelan arepas in a price range of $ 7.50 to $ 12.00.
Hayes wrote to Technology that MIT is aiming for a “soft opening” of Lobdell sellers on August 28. Students will be able to eat in retail stores, although table capacity is reduced and indoor dining guidelines are enforced.
Additionally, Dunkin ‘, TechMart and LaVerde are currently open in the student center, with Cambridge Grill scheduled to open later in the semester.
Update 08/28/21: The opening of all three Lobdell Dining vendors has been postponed to the week of September 13, according to an email to Technology by Hayes.