IU Bloomington adds regional sandwich brand

The first campus units of Wisconsin-based Erbert & Gerbert’s Bistro to open this fall.

Erbert and Gerbert's Bistro Indiana University

To further differentiate its offerings, Indiana University (IU), in Bloomington, is adding the first campus units of Wisconsin-founded regional commercial brand, Erbert & Gerbert’s Bistro, to its roster of dining options this fall. The sandwich and soup concept will replace three units of the campus’s deli brand, Stacks.

“Our campus is divided into neighborhoods,” explains Sandra Fowler, director of residential dining services. “We have the Northwest neighborhood, the Central neighborhood and the Southeast neighborhood and there will be an Erbert & Gerbert’s Bistro in each neighborhood.”

Just like a standard street-side outlet, each unit will offer a variety of sandwiches and soups—named for history- and science-based story characters that the company’s co-founders grew up with. Examples include the “Girf” (turkey and ham), the “Geeter,” (seafood and bacon) and “Narmer” (turkey and avocado). The subs are served along with unusual soup options such as Smoked Chicken & Sweet Potato and Italian Sausage Tortellini. “It’s just something new and different,” Fowler says. “Students are always looking [for something new and] that gets their attention.”

How did a Wisconsin brand come to Indiana? “Our assistant director and the director of residence life, they’re from Wisconsin, so they were familiar with Erbert and Gerbert’s,” Fowler explains. After meeting with brand representatives at an industry conference in early 2014, residence life administrators invited Erbert & Gerbert’s Bistro to campus to share menu samples with students, faculty and staff and to gain feedback. “We work closely with our students on campus when we’re going to bring in a new concept or when we’re going to change even recipes sometimes. We use them to taste test,” Fowler explains.

Ink was still drying on the agreements as renovations began this summer. But because the spaces were previously used for deli service, “there wasn’t a lot that we had to purchase, other than the storefront to make sure it’s identified as Erbert & Gerbert’s Bistro,” Fowler says.

The IU dining services department will oversee all units, and management training concluded at the end of July at the brand’s flagship unit in Wisconsin. All three units are scheduled to open in August, ahead of the fall semester.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

When looking for a way to get more use out of its Canyon Cafe, open during the weekends only, California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, Calif., tried something new: free cooking classes.

Classes are open to students, as well as faculty and staff, and are taught by Campus Dining Executive Chef Michael Albright, according to Mustang News .

The weekday classes, which are capped at 14 participants, have taught attendees how to make items such as probiotic overnight oats and “the perfect turkey.” Interested parties can sign up online via the school’s dining...

Managing Your Business
chef online sourcing

More than 40% of restaurants buy supplies from online sources such as Amazon at least once per month, reducing their reliance on distributors, according to new research from Technomic.

The bulk of the online shopping—what Technomic calls third-party e-sourcing, or 3ES—is for nonperishable foods and other supplies that can’t spoil, such as disposables. "Today, operators are most inclined to purchase products in the nonfoods and shelf space but are reluctant to source frozen and perishables from 3ES,” said Joe Pawlak, managing principal of Technomic. “However, they can envision a...

Industry News & Opinion

Anchorage School District in Anchorage, Alaska, is offering free meals to students this week while schools are closed due to the recent earthquake, KTVA reports.

The meals are being served at nine schools throughout the district between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. and are available to anyone 18 and under. The district has provided school buses at each location to allow students to eat inside.

Read the full story via ktva.com .

Industry News & Opinion

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced its final rule on school meal standards .

The final rule builds upon the USDA's changes to school meal standards announced last year . It will keep the sodium Target 1 limits in place through school year 2023-2024, and Target 2 limits will go into effect for the 2024-2025 school year. The final sodium target (Target 3) will be eliminated.

While operators have been able to meet sodium Target 1 limits, many felt that the second two would be difficult to acheive. Over 90% of respondents in a School Nutrition...

FSD Resources