Eat, drink and be merry: Finding food, coffee and more on campus

lunchbreak2 (1).png
Photo credit: Jian Bautista

Being a freshman can be daunting; there are so many buildings, classrooms, professors and events to find and meet. Another tricky thing to figure out as a freshman is where to eat and how to do it responsibly.

For students living on campus, one of three meal plans can be purchased while residing in the dorms or apartments. The three plans give students a certain amount of dining dollars and meal blocks. The meal blocks can be used in an all-you-can-eat style at the Creekside Eatery, the main dining hall on residential housing. The dining dollars can be used at all Seawolf Dining establishments on campus.

Director of Housing, Dining and Conference Services, David Weaver, confirmed that the prices for the meal plans, as well as housing, will not increase from last year’s rate. The “freeze” on these rates was made in consideration of the rising cost of tuition. They hope to keep the rates the same for a while but will be uncertain until the end of the academic year.

Commuter students may consider investing in a Campus Meal Plan, which is dollar-for-dollar for dining dollars, with an additional three meals at Creekside Eatery for every $100 put on the plan.

Coffee and snacks

(* asterisk implies that dining dollars can be used here)

The Daily Grind* can be found on the west side of campus inside Cuddy Hall. It offers plenty of coffee options, as well as tea, hot chocolate, smoothies and a fridge full of juice and RedBull. A small selection of sandwiches, sushi, salads, cookies, banana bread and more are available right next to the ordering counter.

- Advertisement -

The Drowsy Wolf inside the UAA Campus Bookstore was added when the Bookstore was remodeled several years back. Along with coffee and other drinks, to-go snacks can be found there, too.

You can find the student-run coffee shop, Union Station, on the second floor of the Student Union. This coffee shop is open the latest, until 9 p.m., and has daily special discounts on certain drinks throughout the week. Next to Union Station is a variety of snacks, from Clif Bars to ramen to yogurt and kombucha, which students can purchase at the Student Union Information Desk.

On the first floor of the Student Union in The Den is The Daily Den, which is run by Student Activities and Commuter Student Programs. They offer free snacks and drinks Monday through Thursday, 10 – 11 a.m. and 2 – 3 p.m. with proof of a valid Wolfcard.

Inside the Engineering and Industry Building, coffee can be found on the second floor at eXpress*. The only paninis on campus can be found at eXpress, but it also has a selection of other snacks, too.

Between the Social Sciences Building and the UAA/APU Consortium Library is the hard-to-miss Kaladi Brothers Cafe*. The cafe offers coffee from their own beans and snacks and soup for purchase.

All the way on east campus is the ConocoPhillips Integrated Sciences Building, which has Borealis Brew* on the first floor. The small spot has coffee, to-go snacks and ice cream.

The Bear Necessities* is located inside of the Gorsuch Commons and is a small convenience store to buy snacks and get a caffeine fix, as well as some of life’s other necessities.


Don’t be mistaken that the Daily Grind is the only option for snacks in Cuddy Hall. Further back is a whole market, Cuddy Marketplace*. There are plenty of food options, like Chinese cuisine, Mexican food and pizza, so don’t miss out on grabbing some good food, then grabbing a spot in Cuddy to study.

The Student Union hosts neighbors Subway* and Union Burger*. Subway offers the classic made-to-order sub sandwiches, and Union Burger is the newest restaurant to join campus. NMS Food and Facility Management marketing manager, Kari Sellers, said the new burger-stop has a “retro vibe” to it. It’s a made-to-order burger joint that comes with jojo potato fries and a beverage with every burger purchased. Union Burger is replacing Caliente, the former burrito restaurant.

Creekside Eatery* is the main dining cafeteria for students living on campus. It offers breakfast, lunch, an in-between meal called a “tweener” to accommodate class schedules, dinner and late night on the weekdays. Creekside Eatery offers brunch, dinner and late night on the weekends. It has a new menu coming this fall.

The Varsity Grill* is on the fourth floor of the Alaska Airlines Center. It’s a convenient place to sit down and order some food before catching a basketball game or gymnastics meet. It offers a student menu with items, like grilled cheese and reindeer sausage and a limited menu with entrees like beer-battered halibut and oven-fired pizzas.

For the list of meal plans, visit