New Vegetarian Cafe at Helix

Jenny Brotherton, Staff Writer

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Being vegetarian can be difficult at times with limited choices, especially in high school. Fortunately, Helix Charter High School has provided students with an alternative menu to better support their lifestyle.

George Lepre, Helix Food Services Supervisor, has quite a bit of knowledge and experience with food. He has 30 plus years of experience as a chef across San Diego County.

Mr. Lepre explains the various meatless options Helix offers including,” 3 types of salad with non-meat protein components,black-bean Taco, 3-bean w/ corn, and double string cheese.. there are 5 meatless sandwiches (veggie bagel, spicy veggie bagel, tuna salad, egg salad and tomato-basil grilled cheese.) And 5 veggie entrees, mac & cheese, cali burger, teriyaki tofu, cheese ravioli and southwest burrito, and 3 meatless pizzas. All on a rotational basis.” He mentions that these items are very popular with the students.

While some high schools have vegetarian meals available, they may be lacking in variety.

Helix seems to have a wider selection. Mr. Lepre describes why these options were introduced.

I was approached by Ms. Mawadda Ismail regarding our Halal students and their dietary needs. We had an amazing meeting, and met again with Vince Scimonne, the Food Services Director and he was stoked as well. Plus, I always strive to make hearty, nutritious food that tastes great. with that being said…it is YOUR CAFE! So I decided to open a serving window that serves 5 meat-free options everyday. You folks are our customers and we aim to please!”

Catering to different eating choices and providing healthier alternatives seems to be an important part of the food production and services here at Helix. Hopefully, supplying these meals encourages overall healthier habits among students and faculty.  

Mr. Lepre notes that the meatless items not only accommodate those who are vegetarian, but also those who prefer healthier options, “I want to make our lunch items as healthy as possible, but I also want our vegetarian brothers & sisters to have amazing, original meals as well. Eat well and be well Scotties!”

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