New Phyllis and Frank’s Subs opens in Pioneer Cafe

The new sub shop opened at Utica College is named after the first two students to register at Utica College in 1946, Phyllis Sherman and Frank Cissi.

Alexandria Leland

The new sub shop opened at Utica College is named after the first two students to register at Utica College in 1946, Phyllis Sherman and Frank Cissi.

Emily Anderson, Contributing Writer

Tres Habaneros, which originally opened up in Spring of 2018 in the Pioneer Cafe, has been replaced by Phyllis & Frank’s Subs. This decision was made after students who attended last year’s Food Service Committee meeting said they liked the food, but it wasn’t a place they would eat at every day. 

These meetings are held monthly and students are welcome to attend and suggest changes or express concerns about the Pioneer or Strebel Cafe.

Before Tres Habaneros opened in 2018, a Subway shop occupied the space. However, a student survey in 2017 determined that they would rather have a Moe’s or Chipotle-style restaurant, instead of a commercial sub shop.

Damian Boehlert, general manager of Dining Services, wanted to offer students healthier dining options while also keeping up with current food trends. Fewer people are eating at Moe’s or Chipotle these days and sub shops like Jersey Mike’s are growing in popularity, Boehlert said. After discussing with students and faculty, the majority voted to replace Tres Habaneros.

“A lot of the students at the meeting last year said they liked Tres Habaneros, but could not eat it more than once during the week,” Boehlert said. “You can put sandwiches and subs in the refrigerator to save them for later. That’s why we decided to bring back subs.” 

The name Phyllis & Frank’s Subs comes from the names of the first two students to ever register at Utica College over 75 years ago, according to a sign that hangs next to the menu board.

“On July 29th, 1946, Utica College accepted applications for its inaugural semester of study. The first two students to register were Phyllis Sherman and Frank Cissi, both of Utica.”

The Dining Commons also offers a Phyllis & Frank’s Deli, but it is closed during the Pioneer Cafe’s busiest hours, which are later in the evening. It was anticipated that the new Phyllis & Frank’s Subs in the Pioneer Cafe would be popular among students the same way the deli is in the Dining Commons. 

“Most of the students now want our retail options after the dining hall is closed,” Boehlert said. 

Boehlert decided to rebrand Phyllis & Frank’s Deli with the difference that it will serve fresh-baked bread at the sub shop. 

Students who have tried Phyllis & Frank’s Subs have had mixed feelings. Some said they enjoy it, but others miss the variety of meals available at Tres Habaneros.

“The subs at Phyllis and Frank’s are decently okay, they are not the greatest,” junior Johnson Thuong said. “Personally, I would like to have the Tres Habaneros restaurant back.”

On the other hand, other students are thrilled to have a sub shop on campus.

Freshman and newly-elected SGA first-year President Kyle Mitchell said he enjoyed the subs at the new eatery and they are “fantastic.”

“I love the large sandwich rolls,” Mitchell said. “The staff is nice and truly cares about the presentation and art of the sandwich. This place is better than Subway.”