Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
November 28, 2023

Although we reviewed Uni Mini in one of our previous columns, we thought it was necessary to revisit this hub of campus despite their questionable salads. Instead of focusing on its food, we decided to appreciate Uni Mini as an experience. Determined to get the behind-the-scenes dish, we asked our new favorite Uni Mini employee, Basam, for the inside scoop.

We told Basam, "We're not numbers people, but we're fairly sure that 99 percent of Hopkins students that frequent Uni Mini do so with blurred vision. Haven't you ever wondered what the scene looks like from the other side of the counter?"

"You mean drunk people?" Basam asked, his immediate response to us after we had explained the premise of our article.

Needless to say, those behind the Uni Mini counter remember your night more clearly than you do. "Especially Friday and Saturday night," quips Basam.

He seemed eager to share stories and even needed a moment to collect them in his head.

The first thing that came to his mind was regarding the "special with egg." For those unfamiliar with the special, it is an unofficial highlight of Uni Mini's options (aside from the popular steak, egg, and cheese), and it cannot be found on the menu. People tend to get more creative with this special as the night goes on and tend to personalize their late-night sandwiches with nonsensical names. Basam recalled one customer who entered Uni Mini demanding the "cross country special," which definitely does not exist, but thanks to Basam's patience and experience, he knew how to translate this order and quickly whipped up a special with egg.

Those who feel as comfortable in Uni Mini as they do eating its comfort food sometimes choose to cross the threshold and prepare their sandwich themselves. Basam recounted one customer who asked to cook the food himself and proceeded to go behind the counter to make his own eggs. We suggest leaving it to the pros.

Basam also told us about the shenanigans he's witnessed in the line. Those who desperately crave late-night munchies can't always make it to the counter. These brave souls will rip open a bag of 99? chips, devour it in line, and toss the bag (some would say destroy the evidence) before getting to the counter. We were surprised that Basam described this behavior with such understanding, especially when he corrected us that it is not just one bag of chips, but even two or three! When we further inquired about this, we learned that people not only "dine and duck" (snag some chips and only pay for a sandwich) but there are also those who "dine and dash." When we say "dash," we really mean that they dash. Some students, after obtaining their golden sustenance will run for the door, skipping the cash register. Fortunately for those too excited by their delicious food to stay and pay, our own Carrie Bennett sometimes steps in to foot the bill. But keep in mind folks, we shouldn't rely on Carrie to satisfy our nighttime noshing. As the beloved Shush Lady, she plays the role of our Hopkins mother and therefore, we should probably be the ones buying her sandwiches.

It seems clear that Uni Mini's customers are an eccentric bunch. Their sandwiches (never mind the salads) are worthy of worship.  Let's keep enjoying Uni Mini's delicious sandwiches and amusing their employees, because after all, they deserve some entertainment for just putting up with us.

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