Roly Poly

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On the small street behind Marshall, hidden in the shadow of Chuck’s, is a healthy gem of sandwiches, soups and salads. Roly Poly’s relaxing, refreshing, and quaint atmosphere makes the restaurant an ideal place for someone who is searching for a healthy option, one different from your average Freshman-15 pizza for lunch, booze for dinner diet. This restaurant offers decent prices - you can find a good meal for around 10 bucks - and a good overall experience based on a comfortable ambiance and great customer service. 


When To Go: Roly Poly is one of those places that always has business, but never seems to be overly “busy.” Their weekday hours of 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday hours of 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sunday hours of 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. serve the student body perfectly. Roly Poly is only a short walk between classes for a healthy bite to keep your day rolling. In the half hour window of time I was there in the mid-afternoon, 10 people were served lunch; none of these people had to wait more than five minutes for their food. The service was courteous and fast. One would imagine that the restaurant is slightly busier in the evening, but you’re never going to have to wait longer than 10 minutes for your meal. Bottom line: If Roly Poly is open, then it’s time to go. 


On tap: Unless you consider a soda fountain to be “on tap,” nothing! And this could not be more refreshing. After most other restaurants on campus are stock full of beer, having some variety is great. Roly Poly offers their customers bottled water, soda, and tea. While at first glance to a typical “college student,” this might seem a little simplistic and boring, it really serves as a great alternative. Bottom line: You want another option besides your average night of partying? Go to Roly Poly. 


The Scene: Think Breuger’s Bagels meets Panera meets your local coffee shop. The walls are adorned with colorful pictures of fruit. Weird and random, you might think? Think again. The fruit happens to match the calming colors of the walls perfectly. Along one wall is a counter. The rest of the seating space consists of tables, both inside and outside of the restaurant. Bottom line: The ambiance is subtle and relaxing so you can focus on your food.


Blue Plate Special: Roly Poly is especially known for its catering. Those great wraps you ate at the meeting last week? Little did you know, they were more than likely supplied by none other than Roly Roly! Among the best sellers are the Monster Veggie, California Turkey and Smokehouse Turkey sandwiches, available for both catering and dine-in options, in the four to seven dollar range. Another plus? Unlike most other restaurants in the area, you don’t feel like you’ve gained 10 pounds with one meal. Bottom line: If you want a good non-dining hall sandwich, and don’t want feel like paying an arm and a leg, Roly Poly is your place. 


The Crew: While one might say that the matching shirts and baseball caps are a bit much, they might in fact be the unifying force behind the Poly’s crew. This crew is a group of workers eager to help both their customers and each other. The rapport between the workers is fluid - your order your meal at the counter, they pass it along to the back, and the magic happens. Within the next five minutes, your name is called, and you have an amazing meal in front of you. Dig in! Bottom line: These people are polite, know what they are doing, and are ready to serve you some great food. 


The Crowd: Unlike the majority of other local area restaurants, Roly Poly is truly a welcoming option for anyone. Thanks to the great food and absence of alcohol, Roly Poly attracts anyone from a college student to a local hospital worker to a professor to a family. The relaxed atmosphere is ideal for a casual meeting, grabbing a bite to eat with friends or spending time on homework. Bottom line: If you’re in the area and hungry, you are more than welcome. 


The Deets: When most of think of Roly Poly, their mind most likely jumps to “catering.” While this is of course true, there is more to this restaurant than meets the eye. Roly Poly is not simply Syracuse University’s go-to guy for catering. It is one of those places every SU student should check out at least once. With it’s reliable service, good prices, and good service, it would be a shame to pass up. Bottom line: If you’ve got 10 bucks, an empty stomach, and about 15 minutes to kill, Roly Poly is the answer.


Review by Lorna Oppedisano


727 South Crouse Street Suite 6 Campus Plaza
Syracuse, NY 13210
(315) 373-0077

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