Prefrosh Preview: Life Beyond Leo’s, the freshman’s guide to off-campus dining
Attention serious city-foodies and hungry freshmen alike: Vox is well aware of the fact that your budget, like most college students, is rather tight. However, that does not mean that you must condemn yourself to a life of suffering from mediocre on-campus food. Vox knows her way around more than a few foodie havens. Here’s a guide to some of the best off-campus dining spots.
Once the enchantment and charm of Leo’s wears off, you will probably be looking elsewhere to satisfy your gastronomic needs. Fortunately for you, D.C. is one of the best cities for exploring food, whether it is for a well-deserved break during a stressful study session, for a weekend dinner splurge, or for some ravenous late-night snacking.
Although there are certainly hundreds of other places to find incredibly yummy food throughout the city, Vox has awarded a few of her favorite local establishments that she has frequented during her first year on the Hilltop for your reading (and eating) pleasure.
Cheapest breakfast sandwich: Booeymonger
Affectionately known as Booeys, this quaint little sandwich shop on Prospect street is only a few short blocks away from campus. For less than $5, you can buy a Henny Penny egg and bagel sandwich with a side of home fried potatoes (essentially half the price of each meal you pay at Leo’s). While it might not offer the most gourmet of cuisines, it is perfect for grabbing a late Saturday morning breakfast… or a few Friday night pitchers of beer.
Most creative way to eat meat: Thunder Burger
A more upscale version of the Five Guys variety, this burger joint will make any carnivore, pescetarian, and even vegetarian happy—provided they are willing to shell out a few extra dollars. It offers 15 different types of burgers made from chicken, kobe beef, bison, and even falafel and boasts some fun names to match, like O Fortuna and Rock the Casbah. Vox‘s favorite is the Ventura Highway with a side of sweet potato fries.
Best place to call at 3 a.m: Quick Pita
Whether you are dying for a greek salad to make it through a rough night of homework at Lau or craving hummus after a different kind of rough night on Prospect Street, Quick Pita has got your back. It is open until 1:45 a.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 3:30 a.m. on Friday and Saturday to bring you all the beef shawarma your heart desires in the wee hours of the morning. While the tangible place itself is rather sketchy looking, thanks to the handy online order and delivery system, you never even have to leave the comfort of your dorm in Harbin to enjoy it.
Salad so good you forget it’s healthy: Sweet Green
One of Vox‘s personal favorite places to frequent in the Georgetown neighborhood, Sweet Green offers delicious signature salads (Chic P is her go-to), but you also have the option to design your own salad. All the ingredients are fresh and local, and the total cost usually comes out to around $8-12. Although there isn’t much seating to begin with—added to the fact that it is all located outside—it is not uncommon to take salads to-go to munch on while studying or hanging out at your dorm.
The upscale place you ask your parents to take you when they visit: Il Canale
Located on 31st Street, this Italian restaurant has by far some of the best pasta dishes and pizza in the D.C. area. (Vox suggests either the gnocchi or the paccheri.) The prices are pretty reasonable, but if you want the full dining experience with some antipasti and cannoli de ricotta, you best wait to whip this one out until Parent’s Weekend. And believe me, you will want to try those cannolis.
Best place to eat tacos on a roof: Surfside
Offering “beach cuisine,” or a fusion of Mexican and Caribbean food, Surfside is a great place to go in nice weather when you can enjoy your ahi tuna taco while sitting on the roof-top deck (and overlook the beautiful natural landscape of Wisconsin Avenue). You can even customize your own taco, burrito, or quesadilla by selecting which meat or veggie base, cheese, toppings, and salsa you want on a form in line before you place your order.
Most delicious milkshakes you will ever have: Good Stuff Eatery
While Good Stuff is first and foremost a burger place, its incredible milkshakes definitely bring all the Georgetown students to the yard. Toasted Marshmallow, Milky Way Malt, and Salty Caramel Kiss, just to name a few, have all been Vox-tested and approved as representing upper echelon of D.C. milkshakes. Order the smaller Mini Moo size if you want to spend less than $5. You are guaranteed to be full from this dairy goodness even after just finishing the kid’s shake.
Vox wishes you the best of luck in your off-campus dining adventures, and may your pockets forever be abundant with extra food-spending money. Bon Appétit!
Photo: Nate Magat via flickr