Café Oso at Phoenix College continues to evolve, offering culinary students a more real-world experience while providing lunch diners with a palate-pleasing menu that better reflects contemporary dining establishments in the city.
Packed with farm-to-table produce and plenty of gluten-free options, the menu celebrates a healthy take on Latin-Asian cuisine and is filled with a variety of entrées, appetizers, desserts and small plate options.
The changes have come under the supervision of new café director, Chef Anthony Redendo, known locally for his own popular restaurants, including Sofrita Tapas and Redendo’s Pizzeria in Fountain Hills. He has been a chef-instructor on the campus since 1999.
“I know what it takes to wow the public and keep loyal customers coming back for more,” Redendo says. “A declining customer count was depriving students of the experience of a fast-paced restaurant and the menu did not reflect today’s farm-to-table trend.”
The change in food selections also prompted a more commonly used menu design where the starters, main courses and desserts are all separately priced, where previously diners had a choice a few prix fixe selections.
“With the new model … we believe our culinary students will experience how a profitable restaurant operationally functions,” Redendo explains. “This means that our program must keep pace with both pricing and current cuisine trends.”
However, each week the menu will feature a three-course special for $10, for those who enjoyed the prix fixe option.
Café Oso, located on the Phoenix College Osborn Site at 3310 N. 10th Ave., is open 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday during the fall semester. Last seating for lunch is 12:45 p.m. Reservations are recommended but not required; call 602-285-7764. To view the new menu, visit www.phoenixcollege.edu/campus-life/cafe-oso.