Scratch Cafe is back for another appetizing year

The Culinary Arts Training Centre has reopened to serve the community once again

Scratch Cafe reopens for foodservice three days a week while establishing new safety protocols. (Elizabeth Nygren/The Omega)

Scratch Cafe, a well-known dining choice on campus, has opened once again to serve delicious meals to the TRU community and beyond. With added safety protocols, many can dine happily at the cafeteria or take their food to go this school year.

“Scratch Cafe is a result of the student’s training activities. So through the program, they learn everything from how to make salads, how to make soups, sauces, main dishes, entrees, as well as the baking section,” Kimberly Johnstone, Chairperson of the Culinary Arts program, said. 

Johnstone added that “we end up having the ability to sell the product to the customers that come into the Cafe. It also helps the students to gain confidence in terms of dealing with customers and realizing that customer interaction is part of the foodservice industry.”

Scratch Cafe has always been a staple in TRU campus life. They’re well known for their work with local products, good quality products and service.

“The customers win because we try and focus on sustainability and local and fresh food and everything you’ll see upstairs offered on the menu in the cafeteria is made within the building,” Johnstone said. “They definitely can expect a continuation of a service that we provided for almost 50 years in this building. Good quality product for a very reasonable price.” 

Physical distancing measures are in place for any interested in coming to Scratch Cafe for lunch to enjoy a meal prepared by culinary arts training students. (Elizabeth Nygren/The Omega)

Although sanitation has always been a top priority at the lunch spot, they’ve added new signage and procedures to keep diners safe.

Johnstone said, “sanitation has always been at the forefront of our training, so we haven’t really had to change much there, because we’ve always been very very highly aware of sanitation and those processes involved.” 

Johnstone did add that  “we have taken a reduced number of student in the program so the students are getting more one on one training with the instructors and I think ultimately, that will be a great asset for them … the students have all be trained on all the COVID practices as well, I have a lot of confidence in what we’re doing here.”

They have also added signage to make walkways clear for those entering the cafeteria.

Accolades, the student-run, fine-dining restaurant at TRU, is also reopening on Oct. 7 to provide an elegant dining option to the people of Kamloops on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. They are already close to capacity for reservations.

“It’s nice to see that people still believe and understand the quality of the product that goes out in Accolades and have confidence in us to come back to all our facilities,” Johnstone said.

Scratch Cafe is now only open Wednesdays to Fridays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for food service, due to the reduced number of students working in the kitchens. The cafeteria itself is open until 2 p.m., and people are always welcome to pick up food and premade meals during their open hours.

“We have extra products that are designed for takeaway meals and to take home and have an easy dinner or an easy weekend dinner, whatever it may be, those foods are available all the time in our coolers.”

Anyone wishing to learn more about Scratch Cafe and the Culinary Arts Training Program can check out or their Facebook and Instagram pages that are updated regularly at TRU Culinary Arts.