Fast-casual Mexican grill to join campus

Story and artwork by Liz Pennock

Sophomore public relations and advertising major Ryan Rodriguez drools over the news of Qdoba coming to Chapman as he recalls his first time at the fast-casual Mexican grill.

“When someone introduced me to the queso at Qdoba, my life literally changed at that moment,” said Rodriguez as he excitedly discussed the addition of a Qdoba to Chapman’s campus.

Next fall, Chapman will welcome several new on-campus dining options, including a highly anticipated Qdoba Mexican Grill.

Qdoba is just one of three new food options that will arrive on-campus. Due to the renovations to the Argyros Forum Student Union’s World of Wings dining area, the restaurant will be closed this summer.

According to Dean of Students Jerry Price, the other two options will be a full-service Starbucks, replacing Jazzman’s Cyber Cafe and Subversions, and a Sub Connection sandwich shop. This sandwich shop will accompany Qdoba in what is

Many students, including Rodriguez, are thrilled by the prospect of new restaurants, especially Qdoba, joining the Chapman family.

Senior creative producing major Sophie Singer decided to stay an extra year at Chapman in order to gain a Graduate Degree in Business. She said her decision is “more rewarding than imaginable. The queso at Qdoba is just so good.”

However, many students are unfamiliar with Qdoba Mexican Grill, despite its apparent similarities to Chipotle.

“I have never heard of it before. Everyone says it’s like Chipotle, but I honestly don’t know if I can trust that. I don’t even know what I’d order there,” said freshman creative producing major Alex Rocca when asked about his Qdoba preferences.

Junior screenwriting major Haley Shepherd had similar sentiments.

“You know, it just doesn’t sound familiar. Are they even in California?” Shepherd said.

So, what does someone who is unfamiliar with Qdoba order as a first-timer?

Thankfully, students who are familiar with the chain, like Rodriguez and Singer, have made some suggestions for those who are unsure about this new addition. Here is their advice:

1. The Burrito Bowl

According to Rodriguez, you can get “more bang for your buck” by ordering this bowl. He personally enjoys the “food accessories” like Qdoba’s barbecue sauce and queso on the side. “It’s a big portion of queso. Like, huge.” Rodriguez said enthusiastically of the cheesy side. He also recommended adding chips on the side and dipping them or adding them to your bowl.

2. The Craft 2 Menu

Singer recommends this option because you can get 2 items and try out new food options without “committing to the entire thing.” The chicken tortilla soup and small naked burrito “with queso, obviously,” is what she recommends. The Craft 2 provides customers with a variety of options, including a wide selection of salsa and sauces.

3. The Queso Burrito or “Quesarito”

Junior Creative Producing major Chloe Hales suggests the Queso burrito. What they do is wrap your burrito in a cheese quesadilla instead of using a plain flour tortilla.

“It’s a bit much though, but it’s quite delicious” laughed Hales when discussing the size and volume of this burrito.

4. Grilled Quesadillas

As a vegetarian, Junior Television and Broadcast Journalism major Kelsey Dalzell said that these quesadillas are great option for “an on-the-go snack but are still as filling as a burrito would be.” If you’re not a vegetarian, you have the ability to add your choice of meat to these quesadillas as well.

“It’s hard to go out to eat as a vegetarian sometimes, but thankfully the quesadilla option and the fact that you can opt out of meat allows for me to still eat at places like Qdoba,” said Dalzell.

The Qdoba menu features burritos, burrito bowls, smothered burritos, mexican gumbo, 3-cheese nachos, tacos, grilled quesadillas, taco Salads, the craft 2 menu, kids’ meals, chips and dip and breakfast.

There are dozens of ways to customize your meals, ranging from the type of meat or vegetables you want to the sauce that finishes it off.

However despite the excitement of this new food addition, there are still students who are sad to see WOW go.

Junior business administration major Davis Lee said that he “will be sad, because he honestly enjoys the french fries there” and has perfected his order.

Any time that there are food additions to Chapman, there is always a sense of uncertainty about whether or not the additions will be good. Many students are waiting to discover whether or not Qdoba will be a good addition.

So, whether it will be your first time enjoying Qdoba Mexican Grill or you’re a seasoned veteran, make sure to take into account these suggestions when you’re ordering next fall. 

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