So this blog is titled “Out of the Ordinary,” but no one has written up what this title refers to. At first glance you may think it means something away from the normal, something special. Now that’s part of it, but the Ordinary for Regent students is a place, not a condition. It’s where we get our food!
The name comes from colonial times (so does Regent’s architecture) and an ordinary was a tavern providing a meal at a set price. From locohistory.org:
“Ordinaries, later called taverns or inns, were spaced at regular intervals across the county so that travelers could rest and feed themselves and their horses….a typical meal consisted of eggs, bacon, hoecake, and local moonshine, either peach brandy or whiskey….Transcribed from the 1745 County Court Order Book, Mary Rawlings (194, MACH 5: 9) reported that the rates at Albemarle ordinaries included “good Virginia cyder by the quart” for 7 pence half penny; “a servant’s diet” for six pence; “peach brandy by the gallon” for 18 pence; and “Indian corn by the gall” for 4 pence (note to tourists: 12 pence=1 shilling; 20 shillings = 1 British pound) in today’s currency the “Virginia cyder” would cost about $7.60).”
At Regent’s Ordinary you can pick up a full-fledged meal or grab a quick bite (you can get a whole meal for less than $6). Each day the Ordinary serves something different, ranging from fish to baked ziti. Soups are rotated daily, salads are provided every day. Snacks and drinks are also available. It’s served cafeteria style, so get in line, pick and choose, and go.
True to its historical name, the Ordinary is not very large. There are plenty of places to sit (including a loft to hide out), but don’t expect a large variety of food like what you’d see served at larger universities. But that’s its charm. It’s small and friendly and the cooks eventually know what your “usual” order will be.