125 Stanford Stories

NO. 123
Looking Back

Stanford dining, then and now

Gov. Leland Stanford modeled Encina Hall, with its formal dining room, after a Swiss resort hotel he encountered in his travels. Its distance from Encina's kitchens made it tough to serve food hot, and faculty soon learned why Gov. Stanford had been advised to build smaller dwelling units: The large scale was so impersonal that residents felt little social responsibility and became rowdy.
Stanford University Archives
Lagunita Court's dining room is nearly unchanged since this 1940s photo, except that hashers in white coats no longer serve meals.
Stanford University Archives
Roble Hall's robust menu for Dec. 8, 1940. The menu's owner, Robert Ryan, met his future wife while hashing, or serving, in the dining hall.
Stanford University Archives
The Market at Munger, seen in 2009, serves graduate housing near Stanford Law School.
Linda A. Cicero/Stanford News Service
Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, center, helped develop a class in healthy cooking and eating that Stanford offers annually as part of its Menus of Change program. Oliver oversees the inaugural course in January 2015 with Hanah Yendler, student outreach coordinator for Stanford Dining, left, and student Maggie Ford.
Linda A. Cicero/Stanford News Service
Do-it-yourself Block S waffles with all the trimmings (out of frame: fried chicken) beckon alongside lighter fare at weekend brunch in Arrillaga Dining Commons.
Barbara Wilcox

When Stanford opened in 1891, students ate carb-heavy meals in gender-segregated dining halls, served by white-aproned staff who might have been Jane and Leland Stanford’s former household servants.

In 2013, Stanford Magazine surveyed how far dining at Stanford has come since then. Students now choose from tasty and healthy options, dished up with educational programming that prepares them for life.

Check out a gallery of historical photos of Stanford dining and learn more about Stanford dining and food education yesterday and today.