Housing introduces new dining location

By Nick Zombolas

The University’s housing division has added another A La Carte location for students to use their caf‚ credits at when getting a case of the “munchies.”

The new establishment, e-Chomps, is located in the Forbes Residence Hall dining room at 201 E. Gregory Drive in Champaign.

The e-Chomps menu currently includes items such as bagels, cookies, chips, drinks and salads.

Unlike some of the other A La Carte locations, e-Chomps does not feature hot food on their menu as of its opening, which some students said was disappointing.

“(E-Chomps) is a nice place, but there’s no hot food,” said Calvin Berg, sophomore in LAS.

According to Sue Caldwell, secretary for the Gregory area residence halls, appliances are still being added to e-Chomps and hot food will be available once all installations are complete and running.

“Grills and other things have been back-ordered and we’re waiting for the company to deliver them,” she said.

Berg said he was unaware hot food would eventually be added to the menu.

“That will make the place a lot better,” he said.

Emmanuel Osornio, sophomore in LAS, said he will go to e-Chomps much more often once hot food is added to the menu.

“I always get the munchies for burgers and pizza,” he said.

E-Chomps also features a smoothie counter where students can order a flavored smoothie that will be made in front of them.

“The smoothies are good,” Osornio said. “The strawberry-banana one is great.”

E-Chomps also includes a dining area for students to relax and, according to Caldwell, the University plans to install hookups for wireless Internet in the dining room. This way, students will be able to bring in their laptops and use the Internet while dining.

“That’s sort of how e-Chomps got its name,” Caldwell said.

But Osornio said the area is smaller than he expected, and Berg agrees that it can get crowded at times.

E-Chomps is open for extended hours throughout the week that can offer an alternative to the nearby Gregory dining hall.

The e-Chomps dining room is open from 7 a.m. until 12 a.m., Monday through Thursday; from 7 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. on Friday, from 8 p.m. until 1 a.m. on Saturday and from 8 p.m. until 12 a.m. on Sundays, Caldwell said.

“The hours are cool,” Berg said. “I can fit a visit in around my water polo practices.”