Vita Nova Restaurant Hero Image

Vita Nova is the University of Delaware’s student-operated fine-dining restaurant, offering an award-winning lunch buffet Monday through Friday and elegant four-course dining Wednesday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters.

The more casual Bistro offers a three-course theatre menu, a small plate menu, custom cocktails and an extensive wine selection.

Both dining rooms are located on the second floor of the Trabant University Center, 17 W. Main St. in Newark, Delaware.

Hours and Reservations

Vita Nova

Dining in Vita Nova is a University of Delaware tradition and an extraordinary dining experience. We are now accepting reservations for fall semester 2017. Please call 302-831-0500, email vitanova@udel.edu or use the reservation form.

Lunch: 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday
Dinner: 5:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday

Bistro

Reservations are not required for Vita Nova’s Darden Bistro, but you may reserve a table by calling 302-831-0500 or emailing vitanova@udel.edu. (We do not accept online OpenTable reservations for the bistro.)

Dinner: 5:30 – 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday

Menus

Vita Nova Dinner Menu

FALL TASTING MENU
The Vita Nova tasting menu includes an appetizer trio, artisan breads, salad, intermezzo, entrée and dessert.

APPETIZER TRIO
(Gluten free.)

Red Snapper Ceviche: Cucumber, plantain, cilantro cream.

Five Spice Roasted Pork Belly: Apple-fennel slaw, chives.

Smoked Oyster and Corn Bisque: Triple-cream Brie, thyme.

SALADS

Vita Nova Signature Salad
Medley of greens with candied walnuts, jicama and mandarin oranges. Asiago cheese, toasted coconut, and tangerine vinaigrette. (Gluten free.)

Classic Caesar Salad
Traditionally prepared using Caesar Cardini’s original recipe.

ENTRÉES

Rioja-Braised Short Ribs
Mushroom risotto, haricots verts, gremolata. (Gluten free without the gremolata.)

Sage and Brown Butter Gnocchi
Prosciutto, spinach, Parmigiano Reggiano.

Rose Pepper Seared Duck Breast
Whole-grain faro pilaf, baby carrots, pickled red onion.

Sesame-Crusted Ahi
Soba noodles, snap peas, ginger vinaigrette.

Crimini Mushroom Bolognese
Spaghetti squash, roasted shallots, Romano. (Gluten free.)

Oven-Roasted Cobia
Black rice, haricots verts, lemon beurre blanc. (Gluten free.)

Maryland-Style Crab Cake
Wilted spinach, noodle squash, spicy remoulade.

Center Cut Filet Mignon
“Peewee” potatoes, fresh rosemary, Brussels sprouts, Syrah demi-glace. (Served Russian style when ordering for two or more.)

DESSERTS
Vita Nova students offer a featured homemade dessert sampler as part of the tasting menu, or other desserts upon request.

Dessert Sampler

Wine-Poached Bosc Pears: Butter-toasted pound cake, brown sugar cream.

Sacher Torte: Rich chocolate cake, apricots, chocolate ganache.

Ricotta Cream: Toasted almonds, blackberries, UD honey.

Nitro Ice Cream
Tableside nitrogen-churned vanilla bean ice cream, served over warm berry cobbler.

Seasonal Berries & Fruit
Homemade sorbet. (Gluten free.)

Vita Nova Crème Brûlée
Vanilla custard, caramelized sugar. (Gluten free.)

The Bistro A La Carte Menu

STARTERS

Appetizer Trio
A sampler plate of three appetizers. (Gluten free.)

Red Snapper Ceviche: Cucumber, plantain, cilantro cream.

Five Spice Roasted Pork Belly: Apple-fennel slaw, chives.

Smoked Oyster and Corn Bisque: Triple-cream Brie, thyme.

Cheese Plate
Five artisan cheeses, nuts, quince paste, melba toast.

Stilton (England): The king of English cheese, one of the world’s oldest blue-veined cow’s milk cheeses. Made in the artisan tradition by rural farmers in the shires around the town of Stilton.

Pierre Robert (France): From the Champagne region of France, this triple cream brie-style cheese is rich and buttery with a tangy finish.

Cypress Grove “Purple Haze” Chevre (California): From California’s northern Humboldt County, a perfect mixture of lavender and fennel pollen gives this goat cheese its addicting flavor.

Cahill’s Porter Cheddar (Ireland): An Irish farmhouse cheddar aged with Irish porter beer.

Cave-Aged Gruyere (Switzerland): This alpine classic is a firm cow’s milk cheese with a nutty flavor and hints of toffee and toast.

SALADS

Vita Nova Signature Salad
Medley of greens with candied walnuts, jicama and mandarin oranges. Asiago cheese, toasted coconut, and tangerine vinaigrette. (Gluten free.)

Classic Caesar Salad
Traditionally prepared using Caesar Cardini’s original recipe.

SMALL PLATES

Sage and Brown Butter Gnocchi
Prosciutto, spinach, Parmigiano Reggiano.

Sesame-Crusted Ahi
Soba noodles, snap peas, ginger vinaigrette.

Crimini Mushroom Bolognese
Spaghetti squash, roasted shallots, Romano. (Gluten free.)

Oven-Roasted Cobia
Black rice, haricots verts, lemon beurre blanc. (Gluten free.)

Center Cut Filet Mignon
“Peewee” potatoes, fresh rosemary, Brussels sprouts, Syrah demi-glace.

DESSERT

Dessert Sampler

Wine-Poached Bosc Pears: Butter-toasted pound cake, brown sugar cream.

Sacher Torte: Rich chocolate cake, apricots, chocolate ganache.

Ricotta Cream: Toasted almonds, blackberries, UD honey.

Seasonal Fruits or Crème Brûlée available upon request.

Theatre Menu

ACT 1: YOUR CHOICE OF:

Appetizer Trio

Red Snapper Ceviche: Cucumber, plantain, cilantro cream.

Five Spice Roasted Pork Belly: Apple-fennel slaw, chives.

Smoked Oyster and Corn Bisque: Triple-cream Brie, thyme.

Vita Nova Signature Salad
Medley of greens with candied walnuts, jicama and mandarin oranges. Asiago cheese, toasted coconut, and tangerine vinaigrette. (Gluten free.)

Classic Caesar Salad
Traditionally prepared using Caesar Cardini’s original recipe.

ACT 2: YOUR CHOICE OF:

Crimini Mushroom Bolognese
Spaghetti squash, roasted shallots, Romano. (Gluten free.)

Oven-Roasted Cobia
Black rice, haricots verts, lemon beurre blanc. (Gluten free.)

Center Cut Filet Mignon
“Peewee” potatoes, fresh rosemary, Brussels sprouts, Syrah demi-glace.

GRAND FINALE: DESSERT SAMPLER:

Wine-Poached Bosc Pears: Butter-toasted pound cake, brown sugar cream.

Sacher Torte: Rich chocolate cake, apricots, chocolate ganache.

Ricotta Cream: Toasted almonds, blackberries, UD honey.

Lunch Menu


The menu for our lunch buffet changes weekly. Please visit our Facebook page for the current menu.

Gift Cards and Cookbook

Vita Nova gift cards and 20th Anniversary Cookbook are now available for purchase online.

Connect With Us


A Learning Laboratory

The hospitality industry values students who have applied their knowledge in hands-on environments. Vita Nova serves as a learning laboratory for students in the Lerner College’s Department of Hospitality Business Management.

Each student gets a diverse educational experience by rotating through 17 different positions both in the dining room and in the kitchen. Students gain invaluable culinary, service and management experience in this learning lab.

In Latin, “vita nova” means “new life” or a new beginning, a particularly appropriate name since Vita Nova is the last applied classroom experience for each HRIM student before beginning a new life in the hospitality business.

Aramark Scholars

Each semester, students are selected for a unique internship experience, in which they are Student Managers at Vita Nova.

Aramark Scholars are made possible by a generous gift from Aramark Educational Services, LLC.

Fall 2016 Aramark Scholars

Bailor,-Victoria
Victoria Bailor

Class of 2017
Hockessin, Delaware
Dinner – Back of House
Goldstein,-Maya
Maya Goldstein

Class of 2018
Potomac, Maryland
Lunch – Back of House
Baumohl,-Michael
Michael Baumohl

Class of 2018
Owings Mills, Maryland
Lunch – Back of House
Jeong,-David
David Jeong

Class of 2017
Newark, Delaware
Lunch – Back of House
Cavaliere-Jonathan
Jonathan Cavaliere

Class of 2018
Colts Neck, New Jersey
Lunch – Front of House
Montgomery,-Jamie
Jamie Montgomery

Class of 2019
Wilmington, Delaware
Dinner – Front of House
Cielo_Kristel
Kristel Cielo

Class of 2017
Wilmington, Delaware
Dinner – Front of House
Schietroma-Michael
Michael Schietroma

Class of 2017
Newark, Delaware
Dinner – Front of House
Gewirtz,-Sarah
Sarah Gewirtz
Class of 2018
Melville, New York
Social Media
Zug,-Sarah
Sarah Zug

Class of 2017
Lebanon, Pennsylvania
Dinner – Front of House