With so many food options in Boston, we were curious as to what Northeastern students thought were the best. And they answered. Find out where to get the best burger, the most satisfying late night eats, the healthiest smoothies and the most insta-worthy desserts below.
Best Brunch: Trident Booksellers & Cafe
Three words: all day brunch. And if being able to get French toast 10pm wasn’t enough, you also get the sheer novelty of eating in the middle of a bookstore.
Best Coffee Shop: Pavement Coffeehouse
It’s so close, it’s practically on campus. Not only is it suitably hipster and chill, but it also has killer lattes and breakfast bagel sandwiches.
Best Food Truck (tie): Chicken & Rice Guys and Bon Me
Northeastern’s fortunate enough to have food trucks park on campus, right near Speare. The Chicken & Rice Guys are there Mondays and Tuesdays for dinner. Which means after a long day of classes or co-op, we can look forward to a massive plate of meat and rice topped with their special sauce.
#Spoontip: Some have said this is better than the halal guys in NYC.
Bon Me is good for a quick bite in between classes, since it’s parked on campus Mondays at lunch. It’s like the Asian version of Chipotle — you pick a base and various toppings. There’s something for the gluten-free, the vegetarians, the carb lovers and the salad worshippers alike since they have rice bowls, noodle bowls, sandwiches and salads.
#Spoontip: Get their drinks. They’re all refreshing, and sometimes bubble tea is even available.
Best On Campus Eat: Rebecca’s Cafe
Is there a single NEU student who doesn’t love Becca’s? Answer: No. From freshmen who frequent the cafe when they’re sick of dining hall food to upperclassmen who need to grab lunch in between classes, students all pack into this tiny cafe for made-to-order sandwiches. And if you wake up early enough, you can treat yo’self to a Becca’s breakfast before your morning classes — their homefries and breakfast sandwiches are NEU-famous.
Best Bakery: Flour Bakery
Joanne Chang of Flour is a Boston celebrity. With multiple locations of her bakery and an Asian fusion restaurant, this Harvard grad has taken Boston by storm. Her bakeries are famous for their sticky buns, but have high-quality bread and other baked goods as well.
Best Takeout: Wings Over Boston
Sometimes you just really need wings, ya know? Lucky for us NEU students, Wings is literally right next to campus, making take out super quick. Though if you don’t want to wait for your comfort food, you might want to call and order ahead so you can just pick them up when you’re ready.
Best Late Night: Cappy’s Pizza and Subs
Got late night munchies? Good thing Cappy’s is there for you. It’s a step above BHOP pizza, but still won’t break the bank. And it’s satisfyingly greasy and cheesy — you can’t go wrong there.
Best Bar: The Squealing Pig
Conor’s might be closer to campus and the ultimate epitome of a NEU college bar, but students love The Squealing Pig because it’s right on the Hill, making it the perfect pre-game or post-party stop. Plus if you’re feeling classy, they have prosciutto and fig pizza. Which I can guarantee you, Conor’s does not.
Best Italian and Best Date Night: Giacomo’s in the South End
Giacomo’s is a Boston favorite. And for NEU students, Giacomo’s in the South End wins over the North End location because it has a shorter wait, is classy rather than homey and is much closer to campus. The combination of those factors wins it both the best Italian and best date night restaurant.
Best Mexican: El Pelon Taqueria
Quality Mexican food is hard to find in Boston, especially quality Mexican food that isn’t obscenely far from campus. That’s what makes El Pelon so special. It’s right in Fenway and is thoroughly authentic.
Best Asian: Ginger Exchange
Though Ginger Exchange may not be the most authentic Asian place, it’s a restaurant that has a little bit of everything. There’s sushi, pad thai, bibimbap and dumplings, and they’re all good.
Best Grocery Store: Trader Joe’s
No words can even describe college students’ love for TJ’s. In Boston, where the price for groceries is crazy high, you can shop at TJ’s and not cry over your receipt. I call that winning.
Best Chain Restaurant: Chipotle
Chipotle is beloved by all people everywhere, apparently.
Best Cheap Eats: Dumpling Palace
Chinese food is inherently cheap, and Dumpling Palace is cheap but not crappy food. Because where else can you get giant soup dumplings for so little money?
Best Doughnut (tie): Union Square Donuts and Blackbird Doughnuts
Union Square’s main location is allll the way in Somerville, which is a hike for NEU students, but they’re located in the newly-opened Boston Public Market and various other farmers’ markets. That’s a good thing, because we’re all obsessed with their maple bacon and PB & J doughnuts.
Blackbird is relatively new, but their gorgeous doughnuts and convenient South End location earned them a tie with Union Square Doughnuts. We’re all chocoholics, so the dark chocolate raspberry is a student-approved favorite.
Best Pizza: Dirty Water Dough
As seasoned Bostonians, we’re generally wary of restaurants on Newbury since they’re usually tourist traps, but Dirty Water is an exception. They have unique pizzas from the gourmet, like the Big Papi (broccoli rabe and pesto), to the over-the-top, like the Mac Cheesy (mac ‘n cheese, Ritz™ crackers and Cheez-its™). No judgment if you order multiple pizzas to try it all.
Best Burger: Boston Burger Company
Speaking of over-the-top, Boston Burger Co. is known for their crazy burgers. Their burgers are topped with everything imaginable, from mac ‘n cheese to mozzarella sticks. Go big or go home, right?
Best Lobster Roll: Neptune Oyster
Boston is full of lobster rolls, but what sets Neptune the apart is that they make it hot (with lots of butter) and serve it with fries instead of chips.
Best Ice Cream: JP Licks
JP Licks was founded right here in Boston — hello, Boston pride. They have a wide variety of unique flavors (Sriracha ice cream, anyone?) and creative mix-ins.
Best Cannoli: Mike’s Pastry
Cannolis are everywhere in the North End, but Mike’s is the most famous. It may be full of tourists, but it still has the best cannolis around.
Best Sushi: Symphony Sushi
Sushi less than a five minute walk from campus? Yass. Plus, with Symphony’s lunch specials, you can get an entire bento box for under $10.
Best Health Food: Jugos
Jugos may be hidden in Back Bay station, but that just makes this Brazilian smoothie shop feel like our own little secret. We’re a fan of their fresh juices and insta-worthy acai bowls.
Best Subs/Sandwiches: Chicken Lou’s
Huge Chicken Lou’s subs = the epitome of comfort food. Chicken Lou’s is a long-standing Northeastern establishment and student favorite.
Best Overall Restaurant: Gaslight
The South End is full of gems, and Gaslight is one of them. This French-style bistro wins on all aspects of the dining out experience, from the warm, to-die-for bread to the classic French food. It’s classy, romantic and hip without being snobby. And who knows — if you celebrate your anniversary there like our Community Manager and Social Media Coordinator did (#spooncest), you might even get free champagne…