After living on a sans-Rathskeller campus for over a year, Union students enthusiastically welcomed back the aroma of Skeller burgers and Deadbolts this past Tuesday.
Opening its doors for the first time since spring term of 2014, Rathskeller offers the same heartwarming dishes in a newly designed space.
Gone are the long lines bisecting the seating area; gone is the dead space where the old bar used to be. Now Skeller-goers are greeted with a sleek counter just inside the Old Chapel Circle entrance where they may place their orders and then take a seat in Skeller’s old-style booths or new high tables.
The high tables feature outlets and USB charging ports and make for great study spots. The old, carved round table survived the flood and has been restored to its usual location near the Skeller mural.
Despite rumors of water damage, the mural looks as vibrant and puzzling as ever, reminding late-night diners of mustache jokes and of sharing milkshakes with Bart Simpson, Jack Nicholson, Einstein and Spock.
While the setup may be different, Rathskeller has retained its authentic taste. All of the characteristically Skeller dishes — Phillies, burgers and paninis — still populate the menu, offering the declining balance-wielder choices incomparable to any of the other dining locations on campus.
All of the add-ons are available too, from mac ’n’ cheese to mozzarella sticks to onion rings. While it is impossible to list all of Skeller’s options here, it is even more impossible to convey how delicious they all are.
As Union students know, Skeller is an experience more than it is a place to eat on campus.
On the topic of experiences, one thing to check out at the new Skeller is the milkshake “flavors of the day.”
Just this past week, mint chocolate chip made an appearance among the celebrity milkshakes. Rumors of a pumpkin spice milkshake have begun to circulate, just in time for the fall.
While the atmosphere of Rathskeller has remained the same, some small changes have been made.
The TVs that broadcasted many a football game are now accompanied by small, illuminated displays indicating which order numbers are being served.
The paint scheme has also changed; instead of yellow walls and red columns, the interior has been updated to white walls and yellow columns, giving Skeller a cleaner, more modern feel.
On this note, Skeller has also gone green by introducing reusable plastic cups with every fountain drink sale in order to cut down on waste. These cups come with a free refill, so make sure to pass on the plastic bottles and get a Skeller cup!
One of the most unexpected changes to Skeller is breakfast. From 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Tuesday through Friday, one can stop into Rathskeller to enjoy oatmeal, cinnamon rolls, pastries, fruit cups, yogurt parfaits and customized breakfast sandwiches.
Unlike breakfast at Dutch Hollow or West, Skeller breakfast so far has the advantage of being less crowded and therefore faster.
While Rathskeller has been enhanced by changes made to the setup, appearance and menu, the Skeller experience would be nothing without the fantastic Dining Services staff that works behind the scenes to produce great food in an awesome space.
The Skeller staff, courteous and helpful as always, brings the life back into Rathskeller and makes it possible for Skeller to be a hangout spot full of tasty food and good times.
For keeping a Union tradition alive with their hard work, each member of Dining Services deserves our thanks.
Stop in Rathskeller today to celebrate the revival of a quintessentially Union tradition, one that Union students and staff have enjoyed since 1949!