Despite the tremendous diversity in Cal’s student body, the “broke, starving college student” stereotype is a #struggle for most of us. Unfortunately, finding large amounts of filling, yummy food for less than $7 to $8 can be the biggest struggle of all. For that reason, we decided to try to help out all of our fellow Bears by creating a list of five places that will cure your aching stomach without hurting your wallet.
1. Tako Sushi
Conveniently located at 2379 Telegraph Ave., this place generally has a great bang-to-buck ratio. Unless you’re some kind of sushi connoisseur, we think the food here is pretty good — especially considering its prices. Many of its sushi rolls are about $5, but we have a few suggestions if you’re overwhelmed by the vastness of the menu. The Crazy Monkey roll (tuna, salmon, unagi and masago) is a personal favorite, and it’s quite a steal at $5.59. The classic spicy tuna roll is only $4.49 here, and you can get a California Deluxe roll (crab, avocado, unagi and masago) for just $4.99. For anyone who doesn’t crave raw fish on a regular basis, you can get a student-special chicken teriyaki bowl for just $5.49.
2. Bongo Burger
With multiple locations surrounding campus, Bongo Burger is convenient, cheap, and delicious. You can find this burger shack on Northside at 1839 Euclid Ave., on Southside at 2505 Dwight Way or in Downtown at 2154 Center St. Try Bongo Burger’s take on its classic burger, the American, for $4.25. Make it a cheeseburger for just $5! If you don’t eat red meat, don’t worry — Bongo Burger also has a delicious turkey burger for only $4.50.
Though Sliver is usually thought of as a gourmet pizza shop, prices here are extremely reasonable, considering the high quality of its pies. It’s $2.75 a slice, and Sliver almost always throws in some extra little half-slices of pizza for free, so it’s very easy to leave full without breaking the bank. Stop by during its happy hour from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., and you can grab a slice-and-salad combo for $5. Sliver also gives a portion of its proceeds to supporting anti-human trafficking causes, so when you’re eating its tasty pizza, you’re also making the world a better place.
4. Gordo Taqueria
You might often hear students complaining about the lack of good Mexican food in the Berkeley area, but Gordo Taqueria has the authentic, delicious and cheap grub that we’ve all been searching for. Its chicken, carnitas and beef burritos are all only $5.51, and if you’re feeling extra hungry, you can add a side of chips for just 75 cents more. Gordo Taqueria is conveniently located on the corner of Telegraph Avenue and Channing Street, right next to the Melt.
5. Cheese ‘N’ Stuff
Ranked as one of the best college-town sandwich shops in the nation by Thrillist, Cheese ‘N’ Stuff has high quality, delicious, substantial sandwiches at an outstanding price. Its deluxe sandwich includes choice of bread, meat, cheese, mustard, mayo, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and pickles and costs only $3.95. The staff is also super friendly and flexible — you can get multiple meats on a sandwich for no extra cost or have your sandwich toasted for only 50 cents extra. Overall, Cheese ‘N’ Stuff is one of the greatest quality and best value shops out there; its only downside is that it isn’t open past 5 p.m. and that it’s hidden in a kind of mosh pit of random shops at 2442 Durant Ave.
Contact Claralyse Palmer at [email protected].