Graphic: Hannah Anderson/The Olaf Messenger
I’ve never been much of a breakfast person. In fact, I actually kind of despise it. Muffins are one of the few exceptions.
I first truly fell in love with muffins during my first year at St. Olaf. In fall 2020, I went to breakfasts a lot more frequently — it was an escape from my dorm room. Then, I discovered the delicious apple cinnamon muffins.
These muffins were the perfect size — I could have one or two, along with some fruit, to fulfill my small appetite in the mornings. They were truly a standout in Bon Appetit’s lineup, limited at the time, due to staffing and supply chain issues.
As the years have gone on, I continue to find warmth in a good muffin from the Cage or Stav. However, this satisfaction occurs much less frequently. Flavors such as orange and pistachio have ruled the bakery display at the Cage, apple cinnamon muffins missing from the lineup since the beginning of the semester.
When I posed a question about the whereabouts of the apple cinnamon muffins on the Cage suggestion board, I was left with the response, “they’re not in season.” Apple cinnamon is a pinnacle of fall flavors. Isn’t this the peak season for their consumption? I understand it might be an issue from their supplier, but this has not been an issue before.
Flavors including orange and pistachio now rule the Cage, and when they do have the standard blueberry muffin, it is lackluster at best. Most students expect the Cage’s food to be better than Stav, but that is not the case when it comes to muffins.
Even Stav has seen the loss of muffins. An old staple now is often missing from the shelves. I’m discouraged to go to Stav breakfast because I’m unsure if they will have any muffins to offer. Maybe the 7 a.m. breakfast goers win the battle in the war of limited quantity. I wouldn’t know, because I will never roll up to Stav that early.
The sudden appearance of pumpkin muffins recently gave me some hope. These muffins were fresh, not dry, and the perfect fall flavor. I can only hope that these mini muffins are indicative of a bigger change to come.
I will still consume the muffins that Bon Appétit offers, but I wonder why the quality has worsened over the years, and why will Stav’s muffins always be superior to the Cage’s?