Tea-Do to open on ground floor of Stratton Student Center

Students can also expect enhancements to dining halls with new culinary director, improved allergy-friendly options, and expanded late-night menu

Tea-Do, a contemporary tea house serving drinks, smoothies, and Asian snacks, will be opening on the ground floor of the Stratton Student Center in the next two weeks, according to an email to The Tech from Director of MIT Dining Mark Hayes.

Tea-Do will be open seven days a week, with service from 11 a.m.–9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and from 11 a.m.–10 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Additionally, the Commonwealth Kitchen Launchpad vendors on the second floor — BibimBox, Carolicious, and Las Palmas — will remain open in the fall, Monday through Friday.  Bibimbox’s hours will be 11 a.m.–4 p.m., and Carolicious and Las Palmas will be open from 11 a.m.–6 p.m.

The Dunkin’ on the first floor will also be open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m.–4 p.m. Its hours have been extended to include Saturday from 8 a.m.–2 p.m.

Students may use Dining Dollars and TechCash as payment methods for all student center vendors and for all campus dining locations.

Several improvements have also been made to residential dining halls. “Most notably, Bon Appetit brought on Culinary Director Akeisha Hayde and five new chefs who have a wealth of experience in higher education, hotel, and restaurant food service,” Hayes wrote.

Hayde previously worked as the Executive Chef of Residential Dining at Harvard University for seven years, in addition to former executive chef positions at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Boston Medical Center.

Bon Appetit has also added a registered dietician who will work with students in residential dining to manage food allergies. Hayes wrote that a “newly added world-bowl station adjacent to the Oasis in Maseeh’s Howard Dining Hall” would expand MIT Dining’s allergy-friendly options by excluding gluten and nuts. Additionally, a new Student Allergy Advisory Group will assist MIT Dining in improving allergy-friendly menu options.

The late-night menu at Simmons Hall will be expanded to include hot items from the grill station. 

Finally, vending machines have been added on the first floor of the student center and in Building 16 selling both hot and cold caffeinated Japanese beverages, including coffees and milk teas.

Hayes explained that the enhancements are “founded on broad-based efforts to upgrade house dining.” Hayes mentioned that to “set the stage for steady, targeted improvements like these,” the Meal Plan Working Group launched in 2019 had proposed a new structure with updated meal plan amounts in March 2020. The working group’s plan will be fully implemented in Fall 2024.

Despite disruptions due to the pandemic, MIT Dining has been “optimizing plan value and flexibility, encouraging the use of meals, and ensuring the dining program’s long-term financial sustainability.”

Students may email or complete MIT Dining’s feedback survey, which is co-sponsored by the Undergraduate Association and the Dormitory Council, with their questions or suggestions on house or retail dining. Hayes wrote that feedback from students has “shaped enhancements such as adding halal entrees in every house, the house sushi program, and more robust made-to-order action stations.” To view menus and hours for MIT’s dining halls, students should check