New Food Arrives on UM-Flint Campus

After months of construction, Picasso @ UCEN has opened up. November 28 saw its grand opening with handfuls of students and staff pouring in to check out the new food options, meet new employees and get a taste of what they’d been missing.

This new food service is on the third floor of the UCEN where the Riverfront Cafe previously had been. The location is under the supervision of the Picasso Restaurant Group, a family-owned business who has taken over this year as the campus’ food provider.

Picasso @ UCEN is made up of smaller stations specializing in different cuisines. Jerry’s Grill specializes in breakfast, burgers and chicken; Picasso’s Deli has cold cuts and sandwiches; Panda Brothers includes different Asian dishes depending on the day; and Mona Pizza has, well, pizza.

One of the most interesting developments of Picasso @ UCEN is the addition of a Guest Restaurant Station. Executive Vice President Nina Brinker at Picasso said, “We’re going to feature a local guest restaurant once a week to come provide food. We have a barbeque, Mediterranean and an Indian place lined up already.”

For students, getting food on campus in the past could be difficult. With construction in the UCEN halting any business, the available options for larger meals had been limited to mostly what could be found at the Pavilion. The Blue Bistro in the White Building and Cafe by Picasso on the first floor of the UCEN have been open for a while, but these specialize more in smaller portions.

For Junior Darius Porter, the opening of Picasso @ UCEN is a fantastic new addition.

“I’m really excited about [Picasso @ UCEN] opening,” said Porter. “The Pavilion’s food is fine but it was missing something for me.”

Although Jilly’s Pizza is run by an alumnus, none of the Pavilion’s food stations are owned or operated by the university itself. Picasso @ UCEN feels very much a staple of the campus’ culture.

“It brings in that community factor for me and it just makes me feel like I’m on a bigger campus,” said Porter. “Also, the food is great.”

Hungry students can now rest easy as great food is available at their disposal. It’s not quite that feeling of waking up to the smell of cooking bacon, but it’s the next best thing.

Picasso @ UCEN is open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Fridays.