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A definitive guide to the Husky Den Food Court

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Say you have an hour between classes and don’t want to leave campus for food. Perhaps you have a dining plan or are nostalgic for the one you once had.

Fortunately, the Husky Den Food Court, located conveniently in the HUB, offers an array of choices for your busy day.

Luckily, we’ve taken it upon ourselves, as two sentimental seniors, to try all the options (again) so you can make the best decisions.

New to the Husky Den is ACE Sushi, UW’s very own sushi franchise location serving “fresh high-quality sushi and fusion food.” If you’re craving sushi on campus, this isn’t a bad option, albeit your only option.

ACE Sushi serves a variety of sushi rolls with fair portion sizes and decent flavor for pre-packed sushi. However, this meal comes at a relatively high price for a single serving, so if you don’t want to get spendy on a meal that may or may not fill you up, we recommend trying another option.

Behind ACE Sushi is Crafted, the sandwich shop that notoriously replaced the Subway that once graced our campus. 

Offering a variety of sandwiches and wraps, Crafted is a place to get food on the go. We tried the buffalo chicken wrap, which served as nothing more than sustenance. The tortilla disintegrated in our hands and the sauce tasted far too vinegary to enjoy. 

Let’s just say, we miss Subway. 

Unlike our Cougar counterparts, we are not fortunate enough to have a Panda Express on campus. However, we do have Firecracker, UW’s answer to the fast-casual Chinese restaurant.

orange chicken

Courtesy of Timothy Phung

The orange chicken is done like no other. They seem to use the same chicken as Crafted, but with a far more appetizing sauce. It is, without a doubt, the best orange chicken on campus. Pair that with some yakisoba and you’ve got yourself an exceptional meal.

Tucked in a corner of the Husky Den is Noodle, a build-your-own pasta place that you might just miss if you’re not looking carefully.

With a rotating menu of pastas and sauces, Noodle is always serving something new. They offer freshly boiled pasta cooked al dente, paired with sauces that are rich in flavor. The wait is on the longer side, but it is a phenomenal choice if you have time to spare and want to experiment with building a unique dish.

From what we remembered of Motosurf, we had high expectations for their Hawaiian-inspired plate lunches.

But nostalgia quickly faded into harsh reality once we sat down and saw our meal. Not only were the portions meager, but the teriyaki chicken tasted bland and had a rubbery texture. The best part of the meal was the rice, which was a little soggy itself.

Motosurf does have Spam musubi, which will surely cheer you up after laying in the middle of Red Square moping about failing a biology and a chemistry test all on the same day.

Having had bad experiences our freshman year with DUB Street Burgers, we were skeptical to try the burger spot again. 

burger

Courtesy of Timothy Phung

However, we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of the Classic DUB, a beautiful rendition of the classic cheeseburger. A soft, evenly toasted bun, American cheese, and DUB sauce perfectly complemented the one-third pound beef patty, creating a supple and well-balanced burger worthy of every college student’s gastronomic propensity.

But maybe a cheeseburger might be too heavy right before you get your 10,000 steps in from trying to find your professor’s office in Padelford Hall. Luckily, Red Radish offers two options for Caesar salad, one of which is vegan. 

Though the salad is nothing miraculous, you can customize it to suit your particular taste with a variety of toppings. We recommend passing on the tofu and sticking with the croutons, tomatoes, or mozzarella balls. 

Frankly, all of the meal prices are exorbitant and the queues get long during peak times. It helps to have a dining account, though that may also be unaffordable.

The Husky Den is also one of the few remaining dining options left on campus. So what choice do you have? The food isn’t half bad anyway.

Reach writers Timothy Phung and Andrew Ronstadt at arts@dailyuw.com. Twitter: @TimPhung and @AndrewRonstadt

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