Zane’s debuts Indian food option, “Chaat House”


Elly Herrick

New food option, “Chaat House” is now open in Zanes’s At The Corner space. The food lineup offers Indian cuisine and rotates with other foods like pasta and quesadillas.

Olivia Prondzinski, News Reporter

Winona State University is now offering a new ethnic food option on-campus. The new dining option is an Indian cuisine called the “Chaat House”. The Chaat House will be a rotational option located at The Corner in Zane’s.

Chaat House first opened on Sept. 6 and will be back in rotation on Sept. 26. Students are able to use their dining dollars and block meals at the Chaat House.

Brain Weichert, WSU retail culinary director, first came up with the idea of adding a new ethnic food option after visiting the University of Minnesota.

“Our executive chef, Randy Schroeder, challenged me to look and find a concept that would both appeal to our student population and create something different for Winona,” Weichert said, “there aren’t many Indian restaurants around, so there is definitely a demand for that.”

Chaat House is a compass group brand of Chartwells, and Winona State is using a condensed menu for The Corner. Students can order a whole green tortilla or a rice bowl with the toppings and side of their choice. For sides, the Chaat House offers naan bread or a fresh salad.

For students with dietary restrictions, Chaat House has plenty to offer.

“Every item that we have, besides the naan bread, are all made without gluten containing ingredients, however, there still is the possibility for cross-contamination,” Weichert said. “I think this option really does well for the vegan and vegetarian diets as well.”

Winona State monitors how well the different food options perform every year and make adjustments accordingly.

“It is a constant evolution and change, both to provide better options or eliminate some of the staler things that aren’t as popular anymore,” Weicher said.

Students can also recommend different food options they would like to see on campus.

“We always have kind of peripheral conversations about what else we could look,” George Micalone, director of student union and activities, said. During the 2020-2021 school year, many students were upset by the lack of food options open on campus.

“It was challenging for us too due to labor shortages, but the goal is to have venues open when there is a demand,” Micalone said, “I would say generally speaking our venues are open more often.”

The first week Chaat House was open, Chartwells received positive feedback from students.

“This menu is full of flavor and I think it goes a long way in providing options for everyone,” Weichert said.