Seamus Brennan ‘20
On Wednesday, Feb. 14, Holy Cross Dining Services hosted its first ever Pop-Up Valentine’s Day Dinner. Held in Suite A of the Hogan Campus Center, the event featured a gourmet four-course meal, and availability to students was extremely limited.
Although each course offered at the event had multiple options from which students could select, the menu included a first course of Hearts of Maine Lobster Tail with Horseradish Crèmé, Chipotle Tomato Purée and Lemon Salsa, a second course of Roasted Beets with Chèvre and Arugula with a Lemon Vinaigrette, an entrée of Filet Mignon with Béarnaise Sauce, Mashed Yukon Gold Potatoes with Blue Cheese, and Baby Carrots, and a dessert including Chocolate Lava cake with Kahlua Whipped Cream. Executive Chef of Holy Cross Dining, Ed Rome, designed the menu.
While the dining event was open to all students, the dinner was exclusive, selling out in under an hour. “Last year myself and Catering Manager, Jennifer Parks, starting talking about the idea of doing a pop-up dinner for students and thought Valentine’s day would be the perfect opportunity since it’s a perfect excuse for diners to be a little more indulgent in their meal choices and would give our culinary team a chance to show off their skills,” said Lynn Cody, Marketing Coordinator of Holy Cross Dining Services.
“Throughout the year, Dining Services offers several events to break up the normal rotation of our menus: things like our Harvest Fest week in the fall or last week’s Taste of New Orleans,” Cody continued. “But for Valentine’s Day we wanted to do something extra special. Pop-up restaurants have been around for a while now and we thought offering something similar for students would be something fun and different. Suite A in Hogan offers beautiful views of campus and having a four-course menu is not something that students often get to experience on campus.”
Cody noted that originally the pop-up dinner was limited to two seatings of eight tables for a total of 32 people. “We wanted to keep it small to give the event a more intimate atmosphere. However, because the response was so enthusiastic, we opened up two more tables for each seating for a total of 40 guests,” she said.
Holy Cross Dining Services hopes to continue its trend of innovative dining experiences on campus: “We’ve never done an event like this so we were testing the waters – both to determine what we’d like to do in the future as well as the student response. Each guest was given a feedback card at the end of the dinner and the response was overwhelmingly positive. We’re hoping to offer more events like this in the future and now that we’ve got one under our belts [we are] looking at how future events can accommodate more students while still offering the same personalized experience,” said Cody.
A video including footage from the dining event has been uploaded to the Holy Cross Dining Facebook page, which can be accessed at http://www.facebook.com/HCDining.