My trip to Tufts yesterday wasn’t all spooky towers and abandoned graveyards. Heck, there wasn’t even a cannulated cow in sight — thank goodness, because I was there for lunch.
This is the new Agnes Varis Campus Center at the Cummings School for Veterinary Medicine. It’s home to the Elms Cafe, a restaurant that’s open not only to students, faculty and staff at Tufts but also to the general public.
The Elms Cafe is open for both breakfast and lunch, and it’s a bright, clean place.
It was also, I have to say, my first solid food for the week — chewing! What a concept! — and my Italian on focaccia was awesome. They were also busy making all kinds of wraps and quesadillas, most around the $5.95 range. Next time, I think I’ll try one of the Thai wraps, which come with spicy peanut sauce — I was ready for solid food, but I was pretty sure that even the mildest of spicy sauces might be painful.
Breakfast looks very affordable — lots of eggs and breakfast sandwiches, most under $4 and none over $4.50, and that’s for a plate loaded with eggs, toast, home fries and sausage.
Also, when did the concept of a breakfast burrito become so mainstream? I’ve been seeing them everywhere. It must be the McDonald’s effect.
And a note for the environmentally friendly among us — yes, the cafe recycles!
According to Tom Keppler, the cafe got its name not from the trees but from the building’s past history. If you clicked on the Grafton State Hospital history site yesterday, you may recall that the hospital’s “colonies” were all named after trees. This building, the former male nurses dorm, fell into the area known as the Elms.
The building is now undergoing further expansion to add state-of-the-art lecture halls. Floors above the cafe hold faculty offices and really stunning student lounges — the “noisy” lounge features a pool table and foosball, the “quiet” side has a fireplace and comfy couches. There’s also a fitness center, the first ever on campus which, alas, isn’t open to the public.