The chocolate chip cookies at IV or Steast may be addicting to munch on, but after a while, a girl can only go to the dining hall so much before wanting to go out for **real** food.

Looking for restaurants was a great way to explore an unfamiliar campus and city, as well as their foodie culture. Having just completed my first semester at Northeastern, I can say that that whether you take a walk to Newbury Street or the Orange Line from Ruggles, there are countless spots that every freshman should visit for an unforgettable meal.

Here are 7 restaurants near Northeastern that you should run, not walk, to try during your first semester.

1. Great Taste Bakery

Just a ten-minute subway ride from Ruggles, Great Taste Bakery is a Cantonese-style restaurant in the heart of Boston's Chinatown. Serving a large variety of dimsum dishes, I would recommend coming here during breakfast or lunch.

I've gone to Great Taste with four different friends of all different backgrounds, and the culinary experience here has always been a hit. I recommend getting the pork shumai, egg yolk buns, and BBQ pork buns here. When I revisited Great Taste for the third time with my Cantonese American friend, he recommended we try the fried turnip cakes, and they were also incredibly juicy and bursting with flavor!

2. Tora 

A few minutes away from Great Taste is Tora. Also located in Chinatown, Tora is a place where you can find sushi and the restaurant's signature "kaisendons," a dish where sashimi lays over a bed of sushi rice. One thing other than the freshness of the fish and warm customer service at Tora was the cleanliness of the restaurant.

Especially with the ongoing pandemic, I've become increasingly concerned about hygiene control at restaurants. But you'll notice how clean and safe Tora's interior feels.

3. Piattini

Although the North End may be renowned for its Italian restaurants, I found that I prefer Piattini, an Italian wine cafe nestled in the center of Back Bay's Newbury Street.

Especially during the summer, the patio seating at Piattini has a warm and refined ambiance that makes it perfect for a girls' weekend out or a date night. I loved the shrimp scampi because it wasn't as greasy or heavy as a lot of pastas I've tried at other restaurants. The burrata and prosciutto set is also an incredible dish which is easy to share for starters.

4. Sweet Cheeks

Chances are, you've walked to the Boylston Target in Fenway, whether it was during Welcome Week for some dorm supplies or during a casual weekday run for toilet paper and laundry detergent.

Well, just a thirty second walk down the street from Target is Sweet Cheeks, a barbecue restaurant that serves ribs, brisket, and much more. Although the meat selections at Sweet Cheeks are delicious, the most memorable part of my visit here were the sides. The mac-and-cheese that comes with either a sandwich or platter was seasoned to perfection – and this is coming from someone who barely tolerates mac-and-cheese! 

5. Haju Kitchen

Having lived a decade of my life in Seoul, I'd say that I know what authentic Korean food tastes like.

Although Allston is known as Boston's unofficial Koreatown, I actually prefer the ttukbokki (a spicy Korean ricecake dish) at Haju Kitchen in comparison with the versions at Allston restaurants. Haju Kitchen is also walking distance from campus, a few minutes away from Whole Foods. The fried chicken at Haju was incredible, and it was a perfect dupe for a popular Korean fried chicken brand that I wasn't able to find in Boston.

6. Ichiban Yakitori House

Also located in the strip of restaurants between Berklee and Northeastern, Ichiban Yakitori House is an Asian restaurant that sells majority Japanese cuisine, but also a limited selection of Korean dishes.

Sukiyaki, a form of Japanese hotpot, is my favorite food of all time, and Ichiban was the first restaurant I found that sold it in Boston. Although their sukiyaki wasn't the most authentic, it was still tasty and had a deep broth perfect for any cold winter day. Ichiban is also famous for their "crazy" rolls and wide variety of skewers! 

7. Krasi

Last but not least is Krasi, a Greek restaurant located right by the Prudential Center on Newbury Street.

Krasi is definitely on the more expensive side, so this is the type of restaurant you would go on for a first date, or with your family during Parent's Weekend (where you don't have to take out your own wallet, right?). Out of the countless restaurants I've visited in Boston, Krasi has by far been my favorite one. The ambiance of the restaurant is very romantic, and the customer service was impeccable.

I do not normally go out to eat Mediterranean food, but I was speechless by how amazing the htipiti dip (a dip made of red pepper and feta cheese) was. The option to make the tzatziki dip by yourself was such a creative touch, and I loved the recipe with humorous jokes that they provided. I also loved the fried pork chops and orange cake they served for dessert! 

Rachel Lee

When you start your Northeastern journey, you'll also begin noticing the different types of friends you meet in college (especially if you're a foodie like me!). Read more here about how different friends you meet may remind you of certain foods!