The sole ambition of a college student with free time is to find something to do without accomplishing anything. Because after all, it takes a lot of effort to juggle going to classes, doing homework, participating in clubs/athletics and other extracurriculars, writing papers, reading assignments; the list goes on. With so much being accomplished on a weekly basis by students, when free time does roll around, sometimes you just want to turn off your brain and find something to do that requires no effort. When all of your free time escapades succeed or fail, hunger may beckon.
Whether you dorm or commute, there are reasons to covet a decent meal. Resident students know that no matter how good on-campus eateries may be, there’s always going to be a craving for a home-cooked meal or a dish from your favorite restaurant back home. Commuter students can relate because setting aside time to eat can be tough when you have to spend time traveling to and from school.
For students of New York City, I’ve outlined a few recommendations for when that free time rolls around:
- Pommes Frites – If you are ever in the mood for a simple snack, Pommes Frites is the place to go. They specialize in making delicious Belgian fries, cooked to a perfect crisp. They offer a generous variety of sauces (20+) and they are a must have with your order, especially if you’re looking for a change of pace from ketchup, mayo and mustard. Service is quick and they even offer samples of the sauces before you pick so take advantage. Located at 123 2nd Ave between E. 7th Street and St. Marks Place
- Punjabi Deli – I have had my fair share of Indian food and can safely say that Punjabi Grocery and Deli is an excellent spot if you’re craving Indian food or looking to try it for the first time. Be forewarned: much of the food is pretty spicy. But it is one of the most inexpensive Indian food joints and they offer various vegetable Indian specialties over rice or roti, samosas and even chai tea. It’s a small establishment, but definitely worth trying once. Located at 114 E. 1st Street between 1st Ave and Ave A
- Momofuku Noodle Bar – Momofuku is definitely a unique Asian fusion establishment. It is a popular spot for dinner so you should definitely expect a wait or arrive at opening. Their ramen noodles are delicious, though a bit pricy. You can enjoy a large dinner of two whole fried chickens (one southern fried, one Korean fried), however the chicken is by reservation only. If all else fails for you here, you may find solace in ordering the pork buns. They are so good you are going to want to place an order of pork buns to go after you’ve tried them. Located at 171 1st Ave between 10th and 11th Streets
- Oaxaca – Oaxaca Taqueria comes to Manhattan after seeing success with its 3 Brooklyn storefronts. The restaurant is sleek and clean upon entering and they have plenty of interesting taco options from chicken, pork or fish to vegetarian selections like potatoes or beans. They also have great savings during taco happy hour featured on the coupon posted below. Definitely check them out if you’re looking for tasty, cheap tacos. Located at 16 Extra Place off of E. 1st Street
–Christopher Cusack, Hofstra University
Photo Credit: www.DeadOceans.com (direct link here)
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