Billy D’s Fried Chicken, new community partners among Elon Dining additions this year

Elon Dining has made a number of changes with the main change being the addition of Billy D's Fried Chicken concept which replaces Pei Wei Asian Eatery on the second floor of McEwen Dining Hall.

Elon University has built upon its wide range of dining offerings this year, with the latest addition soon to begin serving students, faculty and staff.

With a new home on the second floor of McEwen Dining Hall, Billy D’s Fried Chicken will offer a robust and delicious menu of fried chicken, sandwiches, mac and cheese and other locally sourced foods. A soft open is planned for this week and will fully open on Monday, Oct. 10.

“The students have been asking for a chicken concept for a number of years,” said Carrie Ryan, assistant vice president for auxiliary services. “We looked at local concepts and the Harvest Table team came across William Dissen who has this concept elsewhere in the state and it hit all the core values of what the Harvest Table program looks for.”

This is the first partnership between Elon Dining and William Dissen, chef and owner of Billy D’s, with Elon becoming the second Billy D’s location. The first is located in the North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro.

Once Billy D’s opens, the Chicken Shack on the first floor of McEwen will become a revolving station where students can vote for what menu items they’d like to see for the following week. A gluten-free deli has been added this year to the offerings available in McEwen, and the dining hall’s pasta station will now include made-from-scratch pasta and sauces. The ingredients from the station will come from the Babylon Micro-Farm station housed in McEwen.

Lakeside Dining Hall has added a new allergen-conscious station called “allgood,” which offers allergy-friendly items without the eight major allergens – peanuts, milk, fish, tree nuts, shellfish, wheat, soy and eggs.

Lakeside will also offer chef-inspired dishes, a selection of smoothies, made-to-order dishes, grain bowls, salads and sandwiches.

The Burger Joint at Clohan Hall has returned with smashed burgers, hotdogs from Niman Ranch and made-from-scratch mac and cheese.

Elon Dining has gained several community partners ahead of the academic year. Shipley Beef, Niman Ranch, Cold Creek Farms, Neomonde Bakery and Homestead Creamery are some of Elon’s newest partners.

An average of nearly 200 pounds of produce from Loy Farms are used at Elon’s dining halls per week and Elon Dining has committed to using dried foods which will drastically cut down on the number of cans used across campus to deliver a fresher product.

Laura Thompson, resident district manager for Harvest Table Culinary Group, said student feedback played a significant role in all the additions to Elon Dining this year.

“We say that it’s their dining program,” Thompson said. “Once a month we meet with our Student Culinary Council and anything new that we’re about to implement or any new ideas, we run by them. Anytime we’re looking to make a change into dining, it’s always based on student feedback.”

Students are encouraged to share any suggestions with Elon Dining and can provide them through the online feedback form, leaving a note on the comment wall at each of the dining halls or through the Elon Dining Instagram page.