We are students. We are hungry. We care about food.
Food is a steady rhythm in our lives. However, making healthy decisions about what to eat is not always easy, or budget friendly. While food catering trucks may bring convenience — we’re referring to the sole food vendor outside the Gillette Blvd. campus — our current vendor promotes unhealthy eating habits, which bring lively rhythms to a subtle stop.
You read the news. San Antonio tops the charts as one of America’s fattest cities. But it’s time you heard from us, the how and why of what we eat and the changes we’re making from the inside out. Concerned with healthy eating, on and off campus, the Mesquite staff is diving into local venues and our own kitchens to explore an assortment of eats, treats, steals and deals to share and recommend favorite dishes with readers from all sides of the greater San Antonio area.
Currently, Texas A&M-San Antonio’s campus locations lack adequate dining facilities and nutritional provisions to meet the needs of its student population. That means the majority of us will roll through a drive-through window before or after class. We know the situation is temporary. The administration is working with us to create long-term solutions. As recently as a year ago, we had a chance to fill out a survey provided by Verano Land Group, letting the developer and other stakeholders know which restaurants and services we wished to surround the new A&M-San Antonio campus.
Where do we stand now? Before saying farewell to spring semester, TAMU-SA’s previous food truck caterer, lovingly called “the truck” offered us everything from sandwiches, salads and fruit cups to greasy hamburgers and quesadillas. Sadly, it left the Gillette Campus with barely a day’s notice and the University had to scramble to find an alternative.
On June 20, what we refer to as a 10,000 watt “vending machine with a smile” appeared in the back of the building between the parking lot and the building overhang. Compared to the previous truck, it sits soulless and empty. Noisily disrupting classes with the humming of a generator, the newly introduced “Woshwa’s Yummy Laspas” ice cream truck (without ice cream) offers what one student called “concession food.” Woshwa’s, stamped out in tiny letters on the nondescript truck, stood by the misspelling of “Styr Fry” on its sign by saying, “Well, that’s how we spell it.”
Due to the lack of a true food source providing fulfilling supplements, the Mesquite staff decided to guide the TAMU-SA community to a variety of alternatives. In addition, the Mesquite staff will strive to provide students and the San Antonio community with Jag-worthy, hole-in-the-wall eatery recommendations and edible blurbs (blogs) for diverse palettes.
What will be seen?
With $ budget in mind, the staff sets out this summer on finding authentic, forgotten treasures and best hole-in-the-wall restaurants in our own neighborhoods. Exploring TJ’s Hamburgers on the Southside to Youz Guyz and Taqueria Acapulco in Universal City to Constantino’s Pizza in Somerset, staffers will review and suggest cost-friendly delights for varied tastes.
Edible blurbs will contain staff blogs, including: “Cooking 101” covering the basics of cooking pasta al dente to properly boiling an egg; “Snacky Treats” shares healthy ways to pack tasty treats for everyday life; and “Family Matters” dusts off the dining room to remind readers that San Antonio families are still sharing great stories and delicious food, together.
Join the Mesquite staff’s food explorations with new and exciting daily posts that inspire, inform, and assist in broadening food choices.
We look forward to and encourage comments and suggestions of what you, the reader, would like to see in our quest of incorporating new food ideas into our community.
— Editors Sarah Ortiz, Yesenia Camacho, Sarah McClelland and Allen Gross