The Silo's exterior (2003).

Monday-Thursday 7:30am-8:00pm
Friday 7:30am-5pm
Note: hours vary, depending on the eatery and time of year;

Looking down on the tables from the second story (2006).

The Silo Union, better known as simply "The Silo", was originally built in 1909 (see also Historic Places) and was one of the first buildings erected on the University Farm. It is located on the south part of the campus (technically southeast, but often perceived as southwest), near the Physical Sciences and Engineering buildings. Originally used as a Dairy Barn, it was converted to a snack bar and recreation center in 1965. among other uses over the past century. Today the Silo serves as a campus meeting area, conference room (Cabernet Room), lounge and eatery, housing these food services primarily operated by Sodexho:

The Silo has a microwave you could use to heat up your food (save some money and bring some leftovers with you, if they haven't been broken for the nth time by students putting metal inside of them) as well as meeting/conference facilities and lounges. The Silo eateries are run by Sodexho (not by the university or ASUCD) through a multi-year campus contract; other facilities within the Silo are operated by the University.

There are ATMs located at the Silo: Bank of America and Golden 1 Credit Union. US Bank got rid of their on-campus ATMs in 2012.

In the South Silo are:


The Silo hours are posted on the website, but are often out of date, and never cover the summer session hours which are significantly shorter than the regular quarter hours. Current hours are posted in the windows of the Silo.

For Spring Quarter, 2012, the silo hours are: Taco Bell - M-R: 10:00AM-7:00PM, F: 10AM-4:00PM Pizza Hut - M-F: 11:30AM-6:00PM, 11:30AM-4:00PM Pub - M-F: 11:30-2PM Grab'N'Go - M-R: 8:30AM-8PM, F: 8:30-5:30 Carls Jr - M-R: 10AM-8:00PM, F: 10AM-5:30PM Starbucks M-R: 7AM-8PM, F:7AM-6PM La Crepe - M-R: 9-4, F: 9-3


There are bright blue ventilation ducts along the ceiling. Taken at a time when the Ivy was less lush (Feb 18, 2000) Pizza hut to the left, Taco Bell to the right


  • Silo Sandwiches permanently closed in 2011. Formerly open M-R: 11:30-2:00, F: 11:30-1:30

The Former Silo Sandwiches

Brenan's was a cafe run by Sodexo that served a limited menu of Starbucks drinks. Brenan's featured its own fresh baked goods and other food. In 2011, Brenan's was closed and was replaced by a licensed Starbucks cafe that serves the full menu of Starbucks drinks and food delivered from Starbucks.

Many years ago the Silo used to have much better hours. There was a time over ten years ago when the fast food restaurants were open until 9PM at night and opened at 8AM.


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  • It kind of bothers me that there are outside commercial interests represented on a public university campus. - KenjiYamada
    • Me too. I think it's because the Silo is run by Sodexho. I'd much rather go to the Coffee House - PhilipNeustrom
      • Yeah, I don't have a problem with ASUCD businesses. At least their profits are all reinvested into the university. - KenjiYamada
        • I only mind the worst outside interests—you can't really get rid of them all. I just wish they weren't super-huge corporations. Like I don't mind the crepe cart. But I do mind the corporate fast food. But yeah, CoHo generally does an impressive job. I read somewhere that it's the biggest restaurant in Northern California. Sodexho is also familar with huge restaruants— they used to do all the catering for certain prisons, and apparently these substandard meals were the basis for several human rights lawsuits. They apparently sold off that division, but really— does that make them less cupable for any wrongs that may have occurred? - jr

2005-06-27 04:38:34   I would like to take a survey. Basically asking whether people would want the Silo to be more like the MU. The objective is to see how many people would like to kick Sodexho out. Going in there, I feel like I'm at a food court at a Mall or an airport - they have little interest in providing healthy food or things for people with special dietary needs. I think sodexho taints the university as a public institution. But then again, I am a wacko. —ChristopherMckenzie

2005-10-23 22:47:01   The MU is a short walk away for those who prefer not to patronize the big corporations. I usually prefer the MU but sometimes crave Taco Bell (when I want a break from the health kick). The only downside is that MU food isn't available as late in the evening as Silo food (I think). —ReginaSikora

2007-03-05 22:16:29   UCD students have a broad range of dining options available to them, on campus and off. The fact that the businesses within the Silo have survived, is evidence that there is demand among students for those foods. Taking those businesses away would just result in students' having to go elsewhere (possibly to an inconvenient location off campus) for those foods. In other words, Silo customers are aware of both the philosophy and the products of the ASUCD-run CoHo, but choose the Silo for its menu offerings. I think that those who take serious issue with Sodexho's policies would do better to focus their efforts on the Sodexho-run dining commons, as this is where the true monopoly -over freshman dining- is. —LeonardMarque

2007-09-29 18:26:42   do you have to be a student to eat here? —WhitneyMartinez

  • No. While there might be a technical rule at the dorms or something like that, non-students can eat anywhere on campus, and if there is a rule for the dorms, it isn't enforced as friends, family (parents visiting), etc. can be seen at times. The Silo in particular would be fine; right next to it is the Craft Center, which is also open to non-students. In general non-students have access to most resources on campus (library, meetings, etc), they just can't sponsor or host them. Basically, the Silo is a fast-food court located on campus for the convenience of people working at and attending the university. —JabberWokky
    • Anyone can eat at the DC, they just have to either be "swiped-in" or pay the cashier at the front. You see cops and professors there all the time. —KellyCorcoran

2010-02-24 12:50:23   I got accused of stealing because I wanted to get a beverage located by the South entrance to go along with a sandwich I got at the North entrance. I just wanted to pay for everything at once! Its not my fault if the Silo is poorly laid out...nevertheless, I am never eating there again after that embarrassing scene.

I have worked for a major grocery store before, and I was told that if I suspected someone of stealing, I was supposed to keep an eye on them, because, 9 times out of 10, they actually are NOT stealing. If the Silo had had that policy in place, they would still have my patronage. —Physics101

  • I can understand your frustration with it, but to some extent it's understandable... the Silo isn't all one big store. It's a bunch of different businesses all under one roof. Most or all of the different areas are separate businesses, and they presumably just watch their own area. —TomGarberson

2010-08-19 07:55:21   Why would anyone willingly opt to eat at The Silo? The food is mediocre and outrageously overpriced. Granted, most items such as sandwiches are as overpriced as any other place (if not slightly more overpriced since their portions are so tiny), but it's really the gross price of fruit. People are either foolish or lazy because how you could justify paying 0.89 cents for A banana or apple is a mystery to me. For ten cents less you could buy a pound of bananas! Frankly, this is thievery in broad daylight. There's also the vegetable cups that are basically tiny cups filled with a few sticks of carrots and celery that Sodexho sticks a nearly $3.00 price tag on. Now I can better sympathize with people who say eating healthy is expensive. Hell, I'd much rather buy a 1,000+ calorie, heart-wrenching Carls Jr. meal than pay 89 cents for a banana.

Personally, I heartedly prefer the Coffee House over The Silo. Not saying the Coffee House's prices are terribly better but IMO the CoHo gives a better value. The only decent offering within the Silo is the crepe cart, though this is of course, unsurprisingly, due to being independent from Sodexho. Unfortunately the Silo is situated at a key location: it's across from the bus terminal and adjacent to clusters of large science departments. With such a large volume of foot traffic in the area the Silo hardly has to exert itself to stay in business. Maybe Sodexho will someday somehow go bankrupt and the Silo will be unbound from its corporate chains. Oh what lofty dreams...


2010-08-20 08:35:50   Agreed whole-heartedly with the above. I wish CoHo would make a deal and buy Silo from Sodexho, although I have heard rumours of CoHo like a CoHo Express in the new student center across from Chem 194. —mperkel

2010-10-04 13:12:37   Today I went to purchase a plain coffee from Brenan's Starbucks, and I received some of the worst service! The line was extremely long and the whole place was crowded so I couldn't see that the plain coffee is self serve, so I go up to the counter and try to order it, and the girl working the counter tells me it's self serve and points to it. I then ask her if the cups are available over there as well, she then scoffs and says "yes, that's usually what self service means". Where I work the drinks are self-serve as well, but you still have to purchase the cup first, and this was the first, and last, time I've ever bought coffee here so I had no idea how it went. I'm really polite and nice to people so it makes me angry when people act like snotty bitches. Plus the coffee was cold and disgusting. Thankfully I went over the La Crepe afterwards to get breakfast and the guys there were super awesome!!! —jwieland1989

2011-04-18 12:47:09   Went to Silo Sandwiches to grab some lunch. I asked for a panini, and the girl said they have them, and yet didn't tell me what types they have. Ok... so I order a roast beef sandwich with extra mayo, no mustard, with cucumbers, lettuce, and tomato. After I leave for my next class, I open it up to find a soggy mess of a few bits of roast beef, no mayo, extra mustard, and no cucumbers. WTF? There was no one else in line either. I didn't even order anything hard, and yet she managed to get everything wrong. Also, there's no way to actually complain about it either (number, email, etc.).

That was my last food place in the Silo, and now I have no one else to go! The "Starbucks" in there always makes me sick, Carl's Jr. takes a lifetime to order and get your even when no one is in line, and Taco Bell has forgotten to put meat in my tacos/burritos at least three separate times. I guess I'll just starve when I'm on the south side of campus from now on. —JennPham

2011-11-22 14:48:24   Anybody else miss Silo Sandwiches? I'd much rather have that than another Starbucks. What was wrong with the coffee place that was already there? —JonathanHughes

2012-08-29 16:42:58   There seems to be an alright sandwich shop now in the SCC right across the road. Unfortunately that's closed for much of the time as well. I have a request: if someone can find the numbering/lettering chart for the tables and post it up here, it would be greatly appreciated. —TheOneElectronic

2013-10-15 20:44:37   Is the Carls Jr. franchise or corporate owned? I'm having trouble finding this information, I found this resource however:

It's owned and operated by sodexo... There is a little plaque at the location stating that ~Daubert