Did you know Bastyr University has an open cafeteria?
Neither did I until a couple weeks ago and decided to see what Kenmore’s academic jewel had to offer.
First off, if you haven’t been to Bastyr it’s located in the middle of St. Edward State Park which offers miles of trails winding through the woods.
A lunch location like that definitely catches my attention, and it’s pretty relaxing taking a break from the city pace to catch some grub.
The cafeteria is, as you would assume, a cafeteria, nestled inside the beautiful grounds and historic courtyard.
Make sure to check in at the front desk and get a temporary parking permit too, nothing will ruin your post-lunch mood more than trying to call a taxi to pick up your car from an impound lot.
The food itself was decent enough. I picked up some vegetarian lasagna, rice pilaf, cold black bean salad and brussel sprouts with carrots for $8.50. A pound of food runs for $9, and soups are $6 a pound.
The sprouts and salad were alright but I wasn’t too impressed. Both were fairly bland but since I love Brussel sprouts they disappeared quickly.
The lasagna was great, however, full of flavor and with all the right textures. I grew up in a house where we didn’t eat too much meat, so I’ve developed a preference to meat-free lasagna, but even if you haven’t I’d say it’s worth a try.
The rice pilaf was also delicious with its creamy mushroom flavor.
Bastyr’s website says they use some vegetables and herbs harvested from its garden, but I’m not sure if they were in season yet.
All in all, I was pretty happy with it. Considering it’s a cafeteria, it’s hard to be too critical and it did enough right to justify the better part of $10 I spent there.
The convenience and speed of a cafeteria is hard to beat too.
I’m not sure if I’ll be back from our office in Kirkland, but if I’m ever hungry wandering the trails of St. Ed’s, Bastyr’s open cafeteria will be a tempting option.
Aaron Kunkler is a staff writer with the Bothell/Kenmore Reporter.