Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


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Far from Mundane: A Review of Jack Kane

Keaton Riebel
Jake Gifford prepares himself in the journey to try each station at the Jack Kane Dining Hall this past week on September 28th, 2023.

Another day down at Winona State as I walk down the hallway of Kryzsko. I hand Donna my card as she says, “remember grocery bingo.” Donna’s greeting at Jack Kane Dining Hall signals to my stomach that it is time to feast. But what food will one pick? With so many options, which are the best? I will be sacrificing my intestines and the rest of my digestive system for the sake of research so that we can come to a consensus on the quality of every caf station.

A couple things to note before we get started: First, I will be washing down the gullet with
two diet Pepsis. The cafeteria has many varieties of milk, juices, and soft drinks to pick from. Ranking all these beverages is out of my pay range, so maybe that analysis comes later. Second, the deli section was closed. These “artesian style sandwiches” are pretty good from my remembrance, but I have heard from a couple sources that they have changed their options this year. With those notes out of the way, let’s get into the potentially good stuff.

First food to sacrifice to the hungry one, we have the corndog. This pooch comes from The Grill, with their catch phrase being “sizzle with style.” The canine was served on a white platter and was hot to the touch. This is a very solid tasting wiener, yet the bread snuggled around it was quite dry. Sadly, this warmly wrapped wiener gets progressively worse the more bites eaten. Its flavor devolves into the flavor of a used bouncy castle with the texture of a fresh scrub daddy. Quite unpleasant if you ask me. Hopefully I can satisfy my tummy with later entries; overall, I give The Grill a five out of seven.

Next meal to grace my lovely little stomach is a combination of turkey, gravy and red potatoes. This bird and its compatriots come from the Delicious Without station, with their catch phrase being “all the flavor. None of the allergens.” The overall presentation of this feast was questionable. The red potatoes were various shapes, and the meat was almost as white as paper. The gravy was the biggest sin. It looked like orange baby food, specifically mushy carrots. Now it comes time to assess the flavors. There is a lack of flavor with the meat, being practically flavorless. Powdery, falling apart in my mouth in a way that makes no sense considering this is supposably turkey. The gravy did indeed taste like baby food, which isn’t very surprising considering its presentation. The potatoes were decent, but they are potatoes; how do you mess that up? With my lil tummy still unsatisfied, I rate this station a four out of seven.

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For the dining halls next trick, they present me with alfredo with noodles and their famous pepperoni pizza. These snacks come from the station named Cucina, which according to google translate is Italian for kitchen. This stations catchphrase is “Italian fare,” yet there aren’t any Ferris wheels or games that I can find. Thankfully, it is food I may be able to rely on. The noodles were well cooked, and the alfredo was quite flavorful! Despite my long history of having the iconic pepperoni pizza, it was actually cooked for once. Normally, this pizza is known around my friends and acquaintances as being raw and not cooked properly. With that out of the way, I rate this station a six out of seven.

Next food needed to consume to review are chipotle pinto beans and cornbread. These beans and bread come from the Rooted station, which has a catchphrase that reads “always vegetarian.” These beans and bread come from the Rooted station, which has a catchphrase that reads “always vegetarian.” These beans were very over-spiced. One of my friends and I were struggling with the spice of these beans for a while. Our struggle wasn’t because they were too hot, but because the over-spicing made our mouths burn long after we were done eating them. The cornbread was decent: a bit grainy, but that’s cornbread for you. I’d rank this excursion a five out of seven. This station had potential; I am a bean fan and if it wasn’t so overspiced it might have been as good as the Italian food.

Last to attack my caf-food-filled stomach, we have meatloaf, mashed potatoes and mushroom gravy. This meat bread and friends come from the Homestyle region. Their catchphrase was “just like home,” and geez I hope it is. The meatloaf texture was good, being moist enough but not too wet to remind of some sort of uncooked French toast. The mashed potatoes were great. I was worried they were going to be bad, but it is near impossible to mess up mashed potatoes. The gravy was also good, but the chucks of mushrooms floating in the gravy were rather unpleasant. All in all, I would rank the bread and others a five out of seven.

Now with all these controversial foods digesting in my stomach, I hope you have some insight on stations you have not tried. Maybe you will avoid the chipotle beans or wait ten minutes for the next pizza that may or may not actually be cooked. You may spend a night in the bathroom reflecting on your dinner, or a conversation with your family convincing them to let you get the block plan instead. Never6theless, the Jack Kane Dining Hall creates a memorable experience for everyone that dines there at Winona State.

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About the Contributors
Jacob Gifford
Jacob Gifford, Features Writer

Jacob Gifford (They/He) is a photographer and a features writer for the Winonan and started in fall 2023. Jacob is in his third year at Winona State and is studying Psychology with a minor in Philosophy and Women, Gender, and Sexuality studies.

Besides working for The Winonan, Jacob is also the Vice president of Philosophy Club at Winona State.

In his free time, Jacob enjoys hanging out with friends, longboarding, playing videogames, and writing and playing music. Jacob also enjoys going to concerts of local bands.

Keaton Riebel
Keaton Riebel, Photo Editor

Keaton Riebel (she/her/hers) is the photo editor and a photographer for the Winonan and started in the spring of 2023. Riebel is currently a third year at Winona State University, graduating spring of 2024 with a major in Creative Digital Media, and minoring in Photography.

In addition to working for The Winonan, Riebel is also a Resident Assistant for the Sheehan Hall but is also involved in other little clubs on campus.

Outside of school, Riebel loves spending time with friends, exploring, going to live music shows, and taking pictures all the while. She enjoys learning new things and trying new activities, especially outdoors. She also appreciates getting into the local communities and finding out how to be a part of the treasures Winona holds.

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