The relationship between a budding engineer and that of food is easily one of the purest in the world. In fact, it is rightly said that get someone for yourself who would look at you as an engineering student looks at a midnight snack in the middle of studies! Enough of romantic comparisons, but you get what I am saying. And for all those looking forward to spend the next 4 years in MIT, these are the places inside the campus which provide you with a full belly so that the mind doesn’t go blank.
MIT FOOD COURT
As first years, the first thing that will come to your notice, as you move towards the hostel blocks from the academic building after the orientation will be the big and beautiful structure of the MIT food court. As first years, especially for the first couple of months, you will be expected to join this for all your food needs. The timings are the same as all other messes and you’ll be having four meals a day, breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner. This is also the only place where you’ll be getting air condition during the duration of the meals on the campus (P.S- Try to come before the half an hour of the end of meal time, otherwise they reduce the AC usage substantially).
The food served here or in any mess in the campus, unlike other engineering colleges in India, is very hygienic in both its cooking and the serving procedures. The menu will seem very good for one month after which it will seem boring, thus having a month-end special dinner every month to serve something different (which is not so different). Anyhow, if you get bored of the regular served food, you can always pay and have the various delicacies which Chef On Wheel (MIT’s main catering partner) serve in the couple of counters on the upper floor. All in all, more than anything it becomes the hangout place for you and your group especially during the first year, which was the main reason I stuck to it during the whole of the first 2 semesters.
All hail the king/queen of all the messes present inside the MIT campus! Known to many as the mess having the best food and also the best menu, Annapoorna Mess is situated near the 9th block hostel and right next to the Department of Commerce. This mess is mostly flocked by senior students and rush for registration to this mess during the beginning of every semester is huge. The taste of the food served here is very good, so much so that even in its cycle of monotony of the menu, people love eating here. The timings and number of meals are same everywhere inside the campus. The only thing which can be said against it is that it is very far away from the academic buildings and the girls’ hostels and also from some of the boys’ hotels which are downhill. Another disadvantage that it has, and that the Food Court has over every other mess, is the air conditioning. Even though Manipal’s weather is better than other parts of the country, this particular disadvantage may sting during the early rains or during the summer.
This mess is located right next to the D-block hostels, and the 8th block, and right between the way to the 14th & 15th block and all the downhill hostels. This mess is also the nearest to what you call a restaurant, which is due to the wide menu available here to order food from, apart from the normal weekly menu served meals. The menu has a wide variety of items including the special chat and pav-bhaaji counters right outside it. Some of the most recommended dishes from its menu are the non-veg dishes which are served and many of the sweet and refreshing drinks. A nice sitting place outside the mess provide an add to the ambience and also the place of the screening of many cricket matches. A projector put upon the side area provide a good viewing of the match. The biggest advantage of this mess amongst the others is its doorstep food delivery service. It delivers almost anything you ask for from its menu up until midnight. It also has the similar disadvantage of not having AC and being far away from the academic blocks and most of the girls’ hostels.
This girls-only mess is situated between hostel blocks 1 and 2. Although it serves only vegetarian food, its lesser crowd and a slightly different menu offers a good place to eat in. Most of the crowd that comes to this mess are that of first years which are living in the nearby blocks of 1st, 2nd,3rd and 4th. As mentioned earlier, a majority of the first year crowd flocks to the food court leaving this mess with very little crowd. The nearness of this mess to the academic building also provides an added advantage. During exams and the time before that this place becomes a good spot for the students living near it as it becomes a measure to save time, thus avoiding the long walks to the other more popular places to eat.
This is again a girls-only mess which is situated in between the hostel blocks 3 and 4. Consisting of the same crowd as Ananya Mess, this mess also serves non-vegetarian food. IT has the same menu as the food court, with the exception of hand-cooked Chapatis. It is also very near to the academic blocks in comparison to the other messes on campus. It again gets a little more crowd near the exam season due to the students joining it as a measure to save time on food.
This is a boy’s only mess which is situated in between the hostel blocks 5 and 6. It has the same menu as the food court, with again the exception of hand-made chapattis. The evening tea for the students of this mess is served in the food court itself, instead of its own premises. Again due to its location, the maximum crowd coming here are the students living in the neighboring blocks. The ambience is good again due to the lesser and more familiar crowd. The main thing to note is that these two blocks are not to be allotted to first years, which may result in the change of dynamic of this mess, something which is uncertain.
If you find someone you know to be regularly eating in food court and one day suddenly is narrating, “Oh man! The food was just like back home!”, then you will know then and there that he/she has had a meal in Sindhi Mess. Located right next to the temple run path, and on the way to the Kamath Book Store, this small house plays host to one of the best food on campus. The menu may not have as wide a variety as other messes but is delicious in every sense. From the fresh hot chapattis and Parathas, to the brilliant Chicken Curry, to the king of all the lime juices served anywhere on campus, it definitely reminds you of home. The eating space is not much and the ambience is a little weak in comparison to the good food. The only big disadvantage it has is that it remains closed on Sundays, which forces you to look around for a meal that day.
Situated right next to the main academic building, the MIT cafeteria provides hot and freshly served dishes of various kinds to both hungry students as well as teachers during the daytime and class hours. The menu has various types of dosas, sandwiches, chats, Maggi and almost everything that can be a quick bite as well as can be eaten as a full meal. As soon as it opens during the morning hours, one can rarely find it empty or having a less crowd, and especially during the small and long breaks this place is filled with people, but this doesn’t discourage the timely serving of your order. The food is always tasty and hot. Also, one of the main parts of the cafeteria is the small juice and shakes counter right at the entrance which serves cool and fresh juices and shakes of different types and flavors. The specialty of this counter is most probably the best Oreo shake served on campus.
Every above-mentioned mess provide you with a full belly during the different times of the day. Also a thing to note for the incoming freshers is the fact there is a new food court which will soon be in operation near the boys’ hostel blocks which are situated down the hill. These mainly consist of the hostel blocks meant for fresher’s. Due to the opening of this the dynamic of the messes meant for the first years will change.
CHEFFIE (MIT LIBRARY CANTEEN)
Chef on Wheels, the Catering Service of MAHE has a small outlet in the campus colloquially reffered to as MIT Library Canteen. If you’re looking for a quick bite in between classes, this is one of the go to places. You’ll have a choice from rice bowls, samosas, different kinds of puffs and patties and some pastries at times. There’s another outlet run by the same people in the 3rd Floor of AB5 to save seniors the long walk.
Right next to OM Xerox, this is the other go to place for a quick bite. Samosas, Puffs, Patties, Cream Buns, Chips, Kurkure, Soft Drinks, Chocolates, Cup Noodles you name it! Almost everything is available!
After all the main messes, now let’s look at the small eateries inside MIT Manipal which provide the fuel to the budding engineers. Campus grill is one of the first names on the students’ mind when it comes to delivery of food right to your hostel block door. Consisting of the various things one will generally find on any fast food joint menu, the specialty of Campus Grill is its cheap price and zero delivery charges. The food is also good in taste, although one should never eat too much of it. They will deliver to every block and is available to order from till as late as 1-1:30 am.
Situated right under the main food court, this restaurant/takeaway serves almost everything from the usual fast food to the dishes for a proper meal, even though a word of advice would be to not try everything. This place also delivers food to various blocks during the late night hours when the hunger strikes. The closeness to the food court and the various shops that people buy various stuff from, often is the major contributing factor to its sales.
MANIPAL FRIZZLED CHICKEN (MFC)
Even though the main branch of MFC outside the MIT main gate is main adda for all the hunger craved bellies looking for some delicious food, it now also has a small shop near the Shenoy’s (a place which you my frequently visit, if you belong to certain class of students) and the Kamath Book Store. The menu of this hugely famous food joint is the closest one can get to KFC but way cheaper and also better in some ways. The burgers, tacos, chicken popcorn and various drinks are the best that this place has to serve. Now with the opening of the shop inside the campus, the students can all these delicacies delivered to them, even though these deliveries do not go on until late night.
IN THE LOVING MEMORY OF: SNACK POINT
The first choice of many students inside MIT as the best eating place inside the campus: Snack Point got demolished very recently due to the building work of the Block 22 hostel. Its menu was one of the most diverse, if not the biggest of all the eateries inside MIT. The food was also amazing and the burgers, frankies and Oreo Shakes serves here were the best on the campus. Probably the only thing going against it was the lack of a proper seating place and late night delivery, but its food made up for all of it. IT is rumoured that it will return as one of the shops in the recently built Student Plaza, which will be a very good thing to happen.
BEE KEY’s MILK PARLOUR
This small shop right opposite the Food Court and in the midway of the sloped path towards the Temple Run, is not necessarily a snack shack but is a place with many things which people need now and then. As the name suggest, it has milk packets and related products such as ice-creams, milkshakes, lassi and other items. It also has biscuits, cakes, cookies and other such small eating stuf which are required in hostel rooms at all times. During a hot afternoon walk back from the classes to the hostels, many people stop here for maybe a cold drink, a bite of a puff, a bottle of fresh col lime or lassi. After dinner, it is the hub of the people waiting to eat ice-creams and lemon and orange sodas.
NIGHT CANTEENS OF VARIOUS HOSTELS
Hostels such as the 17th and 9th blocks have a night canteen attached to it which supply food to the hungry minds struggling through the night. The menu and food are both good and the delivery is also fast. These canteens are also in a couple of other blocks as well.
Right next to the KC gate is this small counter/shop which says ‘Manna from Dehli’. This is the famous Manna rolls of KC. Don’t go to the size of the establishment, it has a lot of delicious rolls to offer which are absolutely fulfilling if you take the right one. The non-veg rolls are considered to be the best here. At any night of the week, this place is flocked with people trying to have a different dinner than usual which is also pocket-friendly.