By Serena Soh
We all know what it feels like to be bored by a repetitive dining hall menu. But by now, most of us have realized that our wallets will suffer by indulging in dinner at a sit-down restaurant once a week. And if you’re anything like me and my friends, deciding on where to eat out is often a struggle, whether that’s because of indecisiveness or conflicting schedules. So, here is a compilation of some local places that are perfect for a quick and easy bite, with meal prices ranging from $5 – $15.
Izzy’s Brooklyn Bagels
If you love bread, carbs, bagels, breakfast foods, etc., Izzy’s is a place you have to visit. Open from 6am-3pm on the weekends, this establishment runs on efficiency — even during peak hours the line moves quite quickly. There are options for people who like their bagels plain or with special cream cheese or in a full on breakfast sandwich. The bagels are baked fresh daily and though you might have been satisfied with dining hall, a visit to Izzy’s will change your whole perspective. Simultaneously fluffy and toasted to perfection with a healthy slab of strawberry cream cheese or a pile of lox, I honestly wouldn’t even mind waking up early just for these bagels. The bagel sandwiches all run under $10 and they are guaranteed to keep you full well into lunch time.
Mediterranean Wraps offers an equally as delicious choice as Oren’s Hummus on University Ave, but at a friendlier price. The establishment is extremely well run, the staff is friendly and the restaurant also caters to customers who need a grab-and-go dinner. In simple terms, this restaurant is like a high-end Chipotle for falafels and shawarma. If you do enjoy swirls of bold spices on your palette, this is the place for you. I love the $14 shawarma plate, which is a heaping portion of lamb and beef slices accompanied with a citric salad and hot pita bread (Warning: there’ll most likely be left overs!). It’s the perfect comfort food when you’re in a hurry and easy to share, if you’re not feeling starved. And don’t be surprised if the owner hands you falafels (fresh out of the fryer!) as you wait in line to pay.
Under normal circumstance, an extremely upscale restaurant like Fleming’s is a place that no average college student should even think about entering. In fact it’s even feels weird for me to include this restaurant in this list. However, I’m here to let you in on the most prized secret: Happy Hour. Now, this isn’t your typical happy hour where drinks and appetizers are just two dollars off. The star of the Happy Hour menu, in fact, is the $10 Prime Burger — a full sized, juicy, amazing quality burger complete with slices of peppered bacon. From 5-7pm everyday, Fleming’s offers this along with a other choices like ravioli, calamari and flat bread that range from $6-10. The only caveat is that you have to wait by the bar seating area to snag a table, but I do have to say that this is easily the best deal in town if you’re craving a succulent, classic American burger.
After trying places like Sharetea, Gong Cha, T4, and Pop Tea Bar, I have to say that Teaspoon is my all-time favorite boba place. The variety on the menu is quite diverse as they offer drinks like “Sweet Marshmallow” to “Grasshopper” and the fact that they are so delicious makes the $5 you pay per drink worth it. If you’re not a boba type of person, they have a selection of jellies/ other drink toppings you can choose from as well as the option of ordering their specialty snows. Kind of like a snow cone crossed with ice cream, these fluffy snows won’t disappoint. More pros to Teaspoon is that they’re opened until 11pm (later than most places!) and only a quick zip-car ride away — making for the perfect study break when you need a sugary pick-me-up.
Contact Serena Soh at sjsoh ‘at’ stanford.edu.