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Thorne heats up breakfast with daily waffles

April 19, 2024

Joy Wang
A WAFFLE LOT BETTER: A waffle maker featuring the Bowdoin sun sits on the counter in Thorne Hall. Make-your-own waffles have recently been featured at breakfast seven days a week at Thorne, previously only appearing at weekend brunch at Moulton Union.

Lovers of the Belgian waffles offered exclusively at Moulton Union for brunch on the weekend are in for a treat. Thorne Hall has added the make-your-own waffle machines—adorned with the signature Bowdoin sun logo—to its breakfast menus seven days a week.

Alongside the waffles, Thorne has also added presses for freshly squeezed orange juice to its offerings each morning.

Executive Director of Dining Ryan Miller mentioned that these new additions resulted from student requests for a more extensive set of breakfast options.

“Whether it comes in the form of a comment card, website form, social media post or email to one of our managers, we pride ourselves on being able to respond quickly [to feedback]. We started to see a trend where students were asking for more of a variety at breakfast,” Miller wrote in an email to the Orient. “We brought together our team to talk through what ideas we might be able to implement. The waffles and fresh orange juice rose to the top of the list.”

Catering Coordinator and AM Supervisor of Dining Service David Burgess indicated that the incorporation of the waffle machines and freshly squeezed juice satisfied student requests without adding much more work for the Dining Service employees.

“It takes us about ten minutes to set it up and about twenty minutes to break it down. It’s pretty easy,” Burgess said.

Although the waffle makers have been absent at Thorne since Covid-19, Burgess said that the waffle machines had been a pre-pandemic staple at Thorne since the late ’80s.

“In 1986, I went into a food show in Boston with [Bowdoin’s] chef.… The [Golden Malted Waffle] company brought us over and showed us their stock. They said, ‘You buy so much product a year, and we’ll give you the waffle makers,’” Burgess said.

Burgess mentioned that Bowdoin’s good relationship with Golden Malted allowed the College to acquire the customized waffle plates with the Bowdoin sun logo.

“Eight years ago—or more—we were talking to [Golden Malted] and they said, ‘Oh yeah, we can make different plates to match each school.’ So we told them [to use] the Bowdoin sun, and they made a plate for it—we’ve been using it ever since,” Burgess said. “We’ve given them a lot of money over the years. They’re a pretty good company to work with.”

In addition to the menu additions at Thorne, Moulton has also tweaked its waffle offerings, periodically offering different flavors of waffle batter, such as the chocolate batter available last Saturday. Miller highlighted that springtime often marks the beginning of a trial period for the Dining Service to experiment with changes for the following year.

“Our intent is to continue the waffles and fresh orange juice through the end of the academic year. At this time of the year, we like to start testing out recipes and concepts for the next year’s menus. It is still too early to tell, but early indications are that our students are enjoying the variety that this offers,” Miller wrote.


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