Interviews conducted by Liz Yu ’19 | Questions by James Holahan ’05 | Photos by Liz Yu ’19
We interviewed three individuals who help define food and love at Terrace today.
- Gladys Marin retired in 2017 after over 30 years with the club. This year she’s returned as guest chef on weekends. Find out what’s changed and what’s stayed the same.
- Sous chef Manuel Gonzalez shares the story of how he came to Terrace 12 years ago, and what keeps him going.
- Current Fourth Course chair Marius Bocanu ’19 gives us a glimpse into the thought process behind the late-night meal.
Who taught you how to cook, and how did you find your way to Terrace?
I started at the club there [pointing northwest] at…what’s the name…Campus Club! I came to Terrace because of Gladys. I knew her from before so she brought me over. Before that, I learned everything about cooking at Campus Club. First I made desserts, then salad, now I do everything. I’ve been cooking for 15 years. You never stop learning, every day I learn, and every day is exciting when I get to cook. It’s nice to see everybody happy, too.
How would you describe your cooking style?
Oh, I love to cook everything.
Do you have any favorites?
No, no. Everything, I love to cook everything.
What would surprise people about what happens behind the scenes in the kitchen?
[Chuckles] It’s a lot of work. No secrets other than that. But I love it, you know?
You have been with Terrace for many years. How have you seen the food culture change through the different classes?
Oh, now the food is very fancy. We have three categories now: Gluten-free, vegan, no dairy. Everything is very healthy, very good. You know, sometimes there’s a little bit of fried things [gesturing towards the sweet potato fries in the hot line], but it’s only a little bit. Everything else is homemade—it’s all prepped by hand and that’s the important thing. Those things matter. The staff is like family. It’s like you’re walking into [Manuel’s] home!
What is the weirdest “only at Terrace” moment you remember?
There are so MANY! Reunions. I think Reunions is the best party. You get to see old faces and new faces. People from 30 years ago say to me, ‘Do you remember me?’ and I say, ‘Of course I remember you! Do you remember me?’ Christmas, too, is a good holiday. One time there was a beer competition in the taproom.
Did you win?
OF COURSE! [Laughs]. Then I went to the third floor and I slept there. You know, Terrace is #1 in everything. When you come in, the staff, the members, nobody is different, everybody feels the same.
What are three words/phrases to describe what TFC means to you?
Family. And then…food. Food is like a restaurant, it’s just so good. And…love. Love the people here, the staff, everybody.
MARIUS BOCANU ’19
Can you describe the inspiration behind the late-night, student-prepared “Fourth Course” meal?
First, it feels good to have a warm meal surrounded by friends at the end of an exhausting day of work. Second, we just love food and everything about it: preparing it, cooking it, sharing it, and eating it. Third, it is great to be able to provide a good meal at night rather than throwing away the food.
I understand that food sustainability is a big part of Fourth Course, using only leftover food to prepare the meals. Is this particularly challenging for menu planning
Usually not. All it takes for a good meal is a bit of imagination and playing around with new ideas.
Do the meals served during Fourth Course differ from regular meal service?
Somehow, yes. There is less variety, but also more daring meals (vegetarian only, for example).