Che becomes late-night eatery

    After many years of being open only a few nights per week at irregular hours, the Che Cafe has opened as a genuine vegetarian restaurant and cafe.

    Jennifer Downs/Guardian
    Veggie stew: The Che Cafe is back to preparing food, in addition to its previous function of being used as a venue for various events.

    The cafe is now open from 7 p.m. until 2 a.m. every night, except on Thursdays when the cafe serves all-you-can-eat dinners from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m.

    The menu includes coffee, teas, desserts, smoothies, hot sandwiches, French fries, burritos, falafel with pita bread, as well as nightly specials ‹ all of which are vegan, made without any animal products.

    “”By being a vegan cafe, we hope to include the entirety of the UCSD community as a whole by not excluding people,”” said Ryan Jorgensen, a Revelle College junior and Che Cafe collective worker. “”It’s all-inclusive.””

    Jennifer Downs/Guardian
    Flipping vegan burgers: All food prepared at the Che Cafe is vegan.

    Drinks and food at the cafe range from 25 cents to $4. Food is prepared fresh. Meal points are not accepted. Service typically consists of two workers in the kitchen per night and others who volunteer.

    Revelle College junior Hud Taylor said he enjoyed the all-you-can-eat Indian dinner.

    “”I think it’s a great place,”” Taylor said. “”It’s a good way to get away from the everyday grind and wind down with good food and good people.””

    The Che’s location was orginially the site of a captain’s mess hall. Years later, it was the location of UCSD’s original student center, and the coffee co-op later converted its name to “”Cheap Healthy Eats,”” which evolved into “”Che.””

    “”The main reason [the cafe started serving food this quarter] was because we wanted to give the student body, and also the entire San Diego community, a late-night alternative,”” Jorgenson said.

    Most on-campus dining halls close at 8 p.m. every night, except for OceanView Terrace and Earl’s Place, which close at 1 a.m.

    Some students feel that these dining facilities are restrictive in their meal options.

    “”[The Che Cafe] is the only place that has options for vegetarians that aren’t limited,”” Eleanor Roosevelt College sophomore Vance Lynch said. “”They give vegetarians a choice.””

    Some students felt the distance of the cafe could be a deterrence.

    “”It’s kind of far away, but if I really needed food or a drink, I would go there,”” Lynch said.

    Other students said they have not tried the Che Cafe.

    “”My friends don’t go there so it’s not something that I think of [going to],”” said ERC sophomore Katrina White said.

    Marketing is a problem the Che Cafe has faced during the process of opening the restaurant as a late-night dining option. The cafe has been unable to advertise their weekly all-you-can-eat meals and new late-night hours through the campuswide Listserv because these events are not considered specific and are ongoing.

    Jorgensen said that despite the problems, he has seen an increase in attendance at the cafe.

    “”We’ve been continuously building up support,”” he said. “”There is large graduate student involvement.””

    Other than being a vegan cafe, the Che Cafe serves as a space for various events including all-ages concerts, lectures and political events. It also includes a “”Œzine”” library and an activist resource center.

    “”We’re offering a totally open community for everyone to get involved with,”” Jorgensen said. “”We won’t judge you. We just want to feed you.””

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