Our Standards

Kitchen Principles

The following principles influence both our standards and our purchasing choices:

RISD Dining is an ingredient guided, self-operated, dining program that prides itself on striving to give the guest an exceptional experience. We support local food interests and provide mentoring to those who wish to reflect our goals of preserving natural resources, supporting community businesses and endeavoring to maintain stewardship of the Earth and all it provides for future generations.

Culinary Standards

  1. Menus are created with seasonally inspired foods which are authentic, simple and delicious.
  2. Foods from local sources (farms, dairies, bakeries, etc.) are given strong consideration.
  3. We are committed to the use of sustainable and locally sourced/produced products.
  4. Work to follow NOAA Fish Watch guidelines for choosing sustainably harvested seafood or appropriate alternatives.
  5. House made foods will be served regularly at all venues.
  6. When possible we avoid high-fructose corn syrup, trans fat and MSG in purchased products, and completely avoid it in house preparation.
  7. We are committed to using various ethnic styles for preparing meals.
  8. We serve ‘naturally’ raised and 100% Angus all beef burgers in our facilities.
  9. We will continue the process of eliminating meats treated with growth hormones and antibiotics, currently all chicken served is ‘natural’ and antibiotic free.
  10. We are committed to high quality, flavorful, vegan and vegetarian options.
  11. Allergens such as gluten, lactose, soy, and fish should be identified through signage in our dining units.
  12. The use or sales of nuts or nut products are prohibited in The Met and Portfolio Café.
  13. We will prepare all foods as close to consumption as operationally possible with a preference to just-in-time cooking.
  14. When possible desserts are prepared, in house, from scratch.
  15. Serving complex carbohydrates as suites the menu choices will be given preference.

You Are What You Eat…

Naturally raised (ground) beef: no antibiotics, no growth hormone, sustainably raised
All natural chicken: no antibiotics, cage free, vegetarian diet
Roast and deli turkey: cooperatively raised and exceptional sustainable practices for plant production; Michigan Turkey
Canned beans: natural and low sodium; Furmano’s - all types
All natural canned tomatoes: minimally processed; Stanislaus
Vegan pasta and many filled pastas; local - Carla’s, Connecticut And Joseph’s, Massachusetts
Organic tofu: house brand tofu
New sugar for vegan desserts: naturally filtered
Fryer oil: expeller pressed canola - NO trans fats
Local Products: farm fresh - local and sustainably raised beef, pork and seafood, produce, honey and Artisan cheeses; Rhody Fresh - eggs; hand fruit, locally sourced in season

Beverage Program:
Coffee: Omar (Connecticut). All coffee is Fair Trade and we support the Rainforest Alliance (higher equitability than Fair Trade)
Local soda company: Al’s Soda (Connecticut). Some local production/some naturally sweetened (cane sugar) sodas/naturally flavored waters
Rhody Fresh, local milk co-op (no BGH)
Silk, organic and sustainable soy milk
Florida’s Best, orange juice co-op
‘Native’ water out of the Berkshires, in bio-degradable bottles

List of Locally Grown:
Blossom Trail Orchards, Smithfield RI: Local fresh sliced apples for desserts
Jaswell Farms, Smithfield RI: Fresh apple cider, honey, apples, seasonal vegetables
Barden Orchards, Smithfield RI: Local fruit and seasonal vegetables
Absalona Greenhouse, Foster RI: Local hydroponic greens and herbs
Hill Orchard, Smithfield RI: Local fruit and seasonal vegetables

List of Locally Packed:
Calise Bakery, Lincoln RI: Local baker of breads & rolls
Graziano’s Sausage, Providence, RI: Fresh Italian sausage
Venda Ravioli, Providence, RI: Manufacturer & packer of fresh pasta

Other Locally Manufactured Products:
Old Neighborhood deli meats, MA.
Iggy’s Bread, MA

Biking is big at RISD – despite the killer hill.