The Commons is not simply a dining hall: It is the nation’s largest LEED-Gold certified collegiate dining facility; a farm-to-campus endeavor; a collection of global cuisine across nine unique platforms; a meeting and event space utilized by the entire community; and an inviting place for students to gather, socialize, study, and even work part-time. It is truly a venerable heart of the campus.
The 54,000 square foot facility feeds an average of more than 30,000 guests per week. Each of The Commons‘ nine unique dining venues feature menus with items that change on a daily basis, offering remarkable variety. Additionally, as reflected in the menus included, each venue serves a different type of cuisine, representative of a complete culinary experience.
Recipes are prepared in small batches to ensure low holding times and the freshest possible meals for guests. Many items are made-to-order, using seasonal ingredients that are sourced locally for freshness and as part of our culinary sustainability initiatives. Locally sourced produce, dairy, meats, seafood and artisanal foods provide our campus community with the best that Georgia has to offer. Supporting our local farmers and producers has allowed us to build strong community relationships. Our three campus-operated farms and our commitment to buying the freshest, local products allow us to provide health conscious cuisine. Additionally, KSU expanded its program to include an extensive hydroponic operation in 2012: nine hydroponic units were installed in the dining hall.
At a glance:
40% of all produce is locally sourced, 20% of all produce comes directly from KSU farms
- The menus change daily across nine distinct venues in The Commons dining hall resulting in more than 130 different items every day!
- A comprehensive nutritional and wellness program that features programs created by the Campus Dietitian and our Executive Chef
- Gluten free, vegan and vegetarian options are available throughout
- In house hydroponic units provide 700 heads of lettuce every 3 weeks
- 2,500 sq foot on-site herb garden and shiitake mushroom garden
- No artificial leaveners are used in making our pizza dough or our white and wheat breads – which we make from scratch every day
- On-site grist mill provides fresh grits and cornmeal
- All of our sauces and soups are made from homemade stocks without any bases or MSG
- All milk on campus travels only 60 miles to reach KSU
- We locally source our chicken, pork, and specialty meats
- We source our seafood from the Georgia coast
- We brine our own pastrami and corned beef
- We brine our own pickles, grown on our own farms
- We smoke our own meats
- Salami, prosciutto, and sausage are produced in house
- Aged romano and pecorino are prepared in house
- We make our own cured and dry-aged meats, sausages, and cheeses
- KSU farm chickens produce 300+ eggs a week