Mein Bowl set to replace Steak ‘n Shake


Mein Bowl hosts a temporary take over in the T-Room on Wednesday, April 19 in advance of its opening fall 2023. (Brock Culp/The News)

Ava Chuppe, Senior Writer

Beginning in fall 2023, a new restaurant called Mein Bowl will replace Steak ‘n Shake in the T-Room, eliciting mixed responses from students. University Dining Services announced the change at a Student Government Association meeting on April 5.

Mein Bowl “offers healthy and fresh made-to-order Asian cuisine with menus built on flavorful spices, fresh vegetables, rice, noodles and proteins,” according to a University press release. Like Winslow Dining Hall, Tres Habaneros and Subconnection, the new restaurant sources menu items from Sodexo.

Racer Dining General Manager Jim Halcombe said the change comes after multiple surveys, product samplings, feedback from the Culinary Council and conversations with students.

“We received an overwhelming response from students, faculty and staff asking for an Asian cuisine option,” Halcombe said. “Mein Bowl will offer greater menu variety, as well as give more options to our vegan, vegetarian and pescatarian diners.”

Steak ‘n Shake, which has been in the T-Room since fall 2019, will close on May 11. 

Despite the closing, the press release said students looking for burgers and french fries do not have to look far.

“Chick-fil-A, also located inside the Curris Center, offers fries and milkshakes, and Winslow Dining Hall regularly has burgers and fries at Bistro Grill,” the release said.

Junior Spanish major Megan Smith said Sodexo should stay in Winslow rather than the retail dining locations.

“You shouldn’t have the same company sourcing out most of your food because that’s a lack of variety,” Smith said. “Although Asian food does sound nice to have…if you look at the menu prices, Mein Bowl’s menu prices hang around $7 to $9 compared to Steak ‘n Shake’s typical $5 to $7.”

Junior creative writing major Marian Bailey said she is unsure how to feel about the change.

“I’m not against having a new restaurant, and Mein Bowl sounds like it could be great,” Bailey said. “It reminds me of what Pony Express offered, and in my opinion, Pony Express didn’t have the best quality. Having a dedicated restaurant will likely produce better food, and I think I’d really enjoy it.”

Bailey said her discontent about Mein Bowl is personal.

“I simply really enjoy Steak ‘n Shake,” Bailey said. “Winslow has burgers just about every day, but they are usually mediocre, and Steak ‘n Shake is better and easily accessible from the academic side of campus.”

Other students, like sophomore electromechanical engineering technology major Evan Harvilla, echoed Bailey’s objection to replacing Steak ‘n Shake.

“I like the idea of having pan-Asian food, but they should’ve replaced Tres, not the best restaurant in the building, Steak ‘n Shake,” Harvilla said.

While Bailey would prefer if none of the dining locations were replaced, she said she understands if not enough space or resources exist.

“I also, personally, have never been to Subconnection if they are looking for a restaurant to replace,” Bailey said. “I don’t know how liked it is on campus, but it’s never made an impression on me.”

Students can give feedback to Dining Services by visiting

[email protected]