Chef Essig's Featured Item of the Week = Taste of Home 2012

taste of home 2012

The experience of University life is exciting, but it can also be stressful for many new students who are away from home for the first time. Days filled with new learning opportunities, friends, and surroundings can create a new sense of independence. But there are often times that the rush of new experiences can lead to a longing for home. "Comfort Food" has a very different meaning now than it did in the past. There are many diverse cultures and backgrounds represented here at UNC, each having their own reference to memories of childhood and foods that bring them a sense of comfort and memories of home.

Join Us For "Taste of Home" in November

Join us for lunch or dinner at Holmes or TK & lunch at the UC Food Court to participate in the 2012 Taste of Home program. We are very proud of this program, and we'd like to share it with you! Click here to see the complete schedule for Taste of Home 2012.

Wednesdays in November = 7th and 14th

  • Lunch and Dinner @ Tobey-Kendel Dining Room and Holmes Dining Hall
  • Lunch @ the University Center Food Court

How Did This Program Get Started?

The Taste of Home program began in the mid 1980's when Carole Davis, then Director of Dining Services, attended a NACUFS (National Association of College and University Food Services) conference where an award was given to a university for implementing a similar program. Carole brought this idea back to UNC, and the Taste of Home tradition has been around for almost 30 years now.

Providing Students a "Taste of Home"

These days, we start working on the Taste of Home program long before the students are even thinking about being homesick. We start assembling information and begin planning during June and July. During September, Dining Services sends out postcards to these same parents asking them to share their student's favorite recipes. This year we received over 70 recipes in a just over 2 weeks. The Dining Services team reviewed the list of recipes, and 23 recipes were selected to be prepared in Holmes Dining Hall, Tobey-Kendel Dining Room, and the University Center Food Court during Wednesdays in November. See the complete schedule here.

Once the recipes are chosen and the schedule is created, a congratulations letter is emailed to the parents and students whose recipes were chosen, and a special invitation is extended for them to to join us during the Taste of Home event. This is often an exciting experience for parents (and students) to see their favorite recipe prepared for hundreds of people.

How Can You Sample These Featured Recipes?

The 23 recipes that were selected will be prepared by Dining Services staff during lunch and dinner at the dining locations mentioned earlier. Customers are encouraged to sample each dish and vote for their favorites. The recipes that receive the most votes are evaluated to see if they could be added to the Spring menus. These featured recipes often become a regular part of the menus offered by Dining Services, and many are customer favorites which are requested again and again.

We encourage everyone to visit the dining rooms in the weeks to come to sample the flavors of our student’s diverse backgrounds. Vote for your favorites and let us know which ones you would like to see again. We appreciate all the efforts of the parents who participate in this program and share their personal “Taste of Home.”

How Can You Get One Of The Recipes?

Once the recipes have been logged into our database, all recipes are entered into the “Taste of Home Recipe Book.” The 2012 recipe book will be available towards the end of November for anyone to download.

Chef EssigHappy Dining from Executive Chef Essig!

Chef Aran Essig, CEC, CCA
(Certified Executive Chef, Certified Culinary Administrator)

Hungry and not sure where to eat? We can help you decide... check out the weekly menus often to see what each dining room is serving. You can also call the FoodLine (970.351.FOOD) for daily menus. Students living in the residence halls can access weekly menus on the VOIP phones in their rooms.

Students: add meals and/or Dining Dollars to your UNC Card

Faculty/Staff: sign up for the payroll deduction program

Have questions, comments, or suggestions?? Need to talk with our Registered Dietitian?? Email us at