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Local schools that serve good lunches

j
JudiAU Sep 20, 2008 08:09 AM

A friend at a local charter school is trying to upgrade the lunches served to the students. Are there any local schools with a particularly good hot lunch program? (I know about the salad bar available in SM/Malibu schools). I am interested in public, charter, or private. Thanks. She needs menu ideas and tours.

  1. JEN10 Sep 20, 2008 08:13 AM

    My daughter just started at Marymount in Rancho Palos Verdes. She said the food has been excellent. It is catered by a local company.

    1. e
      emilymm Sep 22, 2008 08:41 PM

      Stay clear of LA Unified. That food is not edible.

      1. Emme Sep 22, 2008 10:58 PM

        Harvard-Westlake's cafeterias do a pretty good job of offering a fresh sandwich bar, salad bar, as well as daily specials (fajitas, chicken and meat dishes, etc.) along with some standards like rice, fruits, bagels, muffins, etc. Frozen yogurt machines too :)

        1. m
          maggierose Sep 23, 2008 11:38 AM

          Look into Revolution Foods- originally started in the Bay Area, they have moved to LA. The company is founded on the idea of bringing nutrious, local, and good food into schools

          1. r
            Red4Mit Sep 23, 2008 11:47 AM

            Have her take a look at www.freshlunches.com and www.campuskitchen.net.

            1. n
              NAspy Sep 23, 2008 01:05 PM

              Our kids' school (private/elementary) switched to Campus Kitchen last year after deciding the prior hot lunch vendor served too much fried stuff, which they did. The response has been mixed -- Campus Kitchen *does* offer meatless lunch options and a decent variety, but I'm not sure how successful or tasty they are. I was fine eating these flavorless gray lumps of meatless "pot stickers" (made of seitan, I believe) but I saw most kids with that option toss them in the trash. Today the kids are trying the avocado rolls and we'll see how that goes.

              My main complaint with Campus Kitchen is the excessive rigidity with which they monitor the hot lunch procedure and portions. Students purchasing the hot lunch sign up online and choose either a regular or large size and are then given a sticker that is taken from as they stand in line to receive hot lunch. Well, in an elementary school stickers get lost, they fall off, etc. and I've seen Campus Kitchen employees try to not give lunches out to kids who have lost their stickers. There is a much better way of verifying who has and has not paid for hot lunch than denying a young child food. Also, they are extremely stingy with portion size of the fruit and salad sides and parents have gotten yelled at for giving kids an extra wedge of melon when there is always more than enough for all students (since many kids decline fruit and veggies anyway). I emailed a complaint about these issues about two weeks ago and have still not heard back.

              I would give Campus Kitchen a B-/C+ at the moment.

              Our school also offers the In n Out truck 9 times a year. No complaints on that at all!!

              1 Reply
              1. re: NAspy
                r
                Red4Mit Sep 23, 2008 03:26 PM

                My daughter's school uses My Lunch Box To Go in Pasadena (on Green Street), but we don't use it. I don't think their lunches are all that healthy, as they have way too many processed foods (chicken nuggets, taquitos, corn dogs, etc.). You can opt to get a sandwich every day (tuna, ham, p/b), but I can do that at home. Their lunches run ~$4/day, which includes juice/milk.

              2. j
                JudiAU Sep 27, 2008 10:49 AM

                Thanks all. These are very helpful suggestions.

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