Bargain sushi in Durfee basement

Yale students will still have to venture outside the ivy walls to sake bomb, but they can now drop by Durfee’s for sushi.

In an attempt to keep abreast of college dining trends and the needs of its clientele, Durfee’s will add sushi to its menu starting Thursday, Jan. 25. Durfee’s will hold a live demonstration that evening complete with a sushi chef who will fix made-to-order sushi. Other demonstrations will be held at the School of Management and Kline Biology Tower eateries.

“We wanted to give the students another option for late-night dining,” Durfee’s manager Fred Aransky said.

The sushi will be delivered three times a week from Massachusetts-based Seatoyou Boston Inc. No additional training will be required for Durfee’s staff because the sushi is prepackaged, Aransky said.

An order will consist of a six-piece package. Vegetarian sushi, such as California rolls will be offered, and Alaskan sushi, a combination of smoked salmon, cucumbers and rice will be available in addition to shrimp, tuna and eel sushi.

The shrimp, tuna and eel sushi will cost $5.45, and the vegetarian offerings will be priced at $4.95.

“Everything that you get with sushi in a restaurant will come in the pack — wasabi, pickles, all the additional fixings,” Aransky said.

The quality of the sushi has yet to be sampled, but Bun Lai, the owner and head chef of Miya’s, said the difference in the sushi offered by his restaurant and Durfee’s amounts to the difference in fast food and gourmet fare.

“I’m not saying that the dining hall is bad, but basically it will be dining hall sushi. Our sushi is made to order,” Lai said. “Prepackaged sushi is along the lines of Burger King. Burger King can’t be compared to Louis’ Lunch.”

Throughout the year, Ivy League food service directors and the food service director at Stanford University meet. At these gatherings, the food bigwigs identified sushi as the number one food trend on their campuses.

“We are one of the last to jump on the bandwagon. Harvard, Stanford, Columbia and Cornell already provide sushi,” said Yale Dining Services associate director Chuck Bennett, who coordinated the addition of sushi to Durfee’s menu.

Aransky and Bennett both cited Durfee’s inclusion of sushi on its menu as an attempt to satisfy its customers.

“We are trying to accommodate our student customers by offering contemporary foods that they want,” Bennett said. “It’s an extension of customer service, adapting our service to meet the expectation of our customer base.”

Durfee's will offer late-night snackers prepackaged sushi beginning Jan. 25. Each order contains six pieces and includes wasabi and other traditional sushi accompaniments. Choices include vegetarian, eel, shrimp and tuna.
Kerry Shapleigh
Durfee's will offer late-night snackers prepackaged sushi beginning Jan. 25. Each order contains six pieces and includes wasabi and other traditional sushi accompaniments. Choices include vegetarian, eel, shrimp and tuna.

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