The BlogDH Pumpkin Spice Challenge: A breakdown of everything pumpkin on College Hill

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Though fall has only blessed us with its presence for a mere day or two, College Hill is a few steps ahead. Scratch that: College Hill is many baked goods ahead.  Sacrificing our bodies, our minds, and our time, we’ve done the dirty n’ delicious work for you and embarked on the great Pumpkin Spice Challenge. We wanted to prepare you for a season that once consisted of hayrides and haunted houses and that now is incessantly linked to #basic Instagram posts of people fake laughing, wearing sweaters, and clutching steaming mugs. If you want pumpkin (we want pumpkin), you got it. Here’s a breakdown of everything pumpkin on College Hill, complete with information about what it is, where to get it, and how worth it the $4.38 and the 59 Instagram likes truly are.

Food: Pumpkin pancakes
Where from:
Loui’s
How you feel?: When the waiter asked if I wanted granola, chocolate chips, or fruit in my pumpkin pancakes, I became immediately overwhelmed at the Instagram possibilities and responded “none” in haste, which I immediately regretted. Much to my surprise, however, the pancakes spoke for themselves. Melted butter was all they needed. The warm explosion of pumpkin flavor – which did not seem to be born out of real pumpkin – felt comforting and familiar. The smooth texture was exactly what a girl needed, and every bite got better and better. Numerous times, a swarm of bees tried to steal my pancakes, so I feel it’s appropriate to give them an 8.5 out of 10. They were literally the bee’s knees (lol).

Food: Pumpkin muffin
Where from:
Da Blue Room
How you feel?: Most of my friends didn’t even know the Blue Room had a pumpkin muffin. Well, here’s my response: if ya don’t know, now you know. And you should get one. Now.

I went to the Blue Room at 11:57 a.m. in the hopes of finding one of these elusive baked goods. The muffins present were neither warm nor pumpkin. I asked when the next batch would be ready, and they told me 15 minutes. I returned in 15 minutes, to find that I should return in an hour. Frazzled, I returned every 15 minutes another four times. When they were finally out of the oven, they told me they were “not allowed to give [me] a muffin until 1:20,” so I returned at 1:20, and FINALLY received my warm pumpkin muffin. Talk about persistence. Ta-da!

Let me tell you, it was about the best darn thing I’ve ever eaten. It was warm and fluffy, but not so moist that it was mushy. (That’s what she said, right? [Ed.--no.]) The portion size was perfect. I told myself I was only going to eat the top knowing I would eat the whole thing and still be totally fine and perfectly satisfied. In terms of its pumpkinness, it was perfect. It wasn’t trying to be a pumpkin cupcake. It had autumnal spice without being spicy, and a recognizable pumpkin savor without being too sweet. Thus, the Blue Room astounds with enough authenticity to make it easy, peasy: 10 out of 10.

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If the dining halls were rappers, who would they be?

Lucky for you all, I know the answer to the question that has been keeping you up at night. No, it’s not the pressing matter of “Do they like me back?” or, “Did I just fail my midterm?” or even, “Should I go out tomorrow night?” But rather, I can provide you with the long-sought answer to: “If the dining halls were rappers, who would they be?” See below, and thank me later.

Andrews Commons = Drake

“Started from the bottom, now we eating pho.”

Drake breaking it down, Andrews style

Andrews Commons is the hottest dining hall on the scene right now. It’s young, fresh, and multi-cultural. I have even heard that Andrews was on Degrassi for a while, but I’m not sure, that could just be a rumor. But in all seriousness, AC and Drake are so clearly twins (Can a person and a dining hall be twins? In this case, I’ll argue yes). Drake is everyone’s guilty pleasure, and Drake and AC can both provide happiness until the wee hours of the night. Whether you are feeling sad, hungry, happy, tired, defeated, or lonely, Drake is there for you. Slip in some headphones and bump some “Nothing Was the Same,” “Take Care,” or “Thank Me Later,” and all suddenly becomes better. Andrews provides the same source of solace; whether you are craving some nacho pizza, pho, ageless sushi, mystery calzones, or a beastly grinder, it has your back and never asks, “Are you sure you want all of that?” Finally - Drake hates breakfast, and Andrews Commons does not serve breakfast. He even raps about it -“Bank account statements just look like I’m ready for early retirement…I hate breakfast.” ‘Nuff said.

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Captain Seaweed’s Thursday Night Lobster Raffle: Cheap beer, cheese puffs and live lobsters

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One Thursday night, these two BlogDH writers decided—like the proper seniors we are—to ignore our readings for the night and drag our housemates to Captain Seaweed’s Pub on the corner of Ives and Williams. The honeymoon period with the GCB was waning, and it was good to get out to the other bars of Providence—you can only go to Spats so many times before you feel like you should be a real adult and branch out. Meanwhile, Seaweed’s is home to good-spirited bartenders, plenty of fishing tackle and an old decrepit statue of a fisherman, whose level of creepiness is certainly up there.

But the real reason to visit Seaweed’s is for the Thursday night lobster raffle. Every Thursday, each drink comes with a raffle ticket, and then, at 11:30, winners are chosen and given a tray with two lobsters and a bag of mussels.

The success of the evening is all about strategy.

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Amuse-Bouche: Yan’s Cuisine

There’s always a sense of anticipation surrounding an empty storefront on College Hill. Sure, we might long for the days when an incredibly useful convenience store occupied the corner of Thayer and Euclid — take the hint, local entrepreneurs — but coupled with that desolation is hope for the future: someday, some new business is coming in there. Eventually.

Brunonians who frequent the eastern end of campus had become used to this feeling while staring at the façade that once was Iron Wok. Luckily, Yan’s Cuisine, a Chinese restaurant reminiscent of its predecessor, opened up a few weeks ago in the once-abandoned storefront on the corner of Brook and Benevolent. The newcomer offers a surprisingly diverse set of options. You can go for dishes typical of Americanized Chinese fare (General Tso’s chicken, steamed pork dumplings, egg rolls, etc.), or you can be brave and try one of an impressive selection of less popular items, like “House Special Neck Bone” and “Lion’s Head Meat Ball.” (Ed. – We’re taking submissions for artistic renderings of the latter dish).

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A Cool Thing You Shouldn’t Miss: Sign up for a Fall Market Share

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Don’t let the departure of summer produce get you down (RIP tomatoes and berries) – sign up for a Fall Brown Market Share and receive farm fresh fruits and vegetables every week!

This delicious Fall season will run from September 18th through December 4th. The weekly bounty will be available for pickup every Thursday at the Brown/RISD Hillel. The deadline for signups is Tuesday, Sept. 9th at 11:59p.m.

Want to volunteer for Market Shares? Interested students should email volunteering@brownmarketshares.com to learn more about getting involved with the organization.

Image via

The Herald wants to know what your favorite Brown meal is

As part of its Brown 250+ web site that will be going up soon, the Brown Daily Herald wants images of Brunonia’s favorite meals from the various university eateries. You heard right. The BDH wants your Ratty food porn.

Whether it’s a succulent Spicy With from Jo’s, grilled chicken from the Ratty, or whatever it is they sell at Poppy’s, this is a great opportunity to let your voice be heard on what is sure to be a beautiful new site. To enter your photo, simply post it to Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #BrownEats. Once the site goes live, your favorite food will be there for all to see. We haven’t heard anything about whether or not there will be prizes for the top submissions, but know that the person who puts the best filter on an Ivy Room falafel wrap has a special place in my heart. Be sure to post your favorites!

Image via Emily Gilbert ’14.