We at the Clog understand. Sometimes you just need lunch, and you need it now. You don’t have much time before your next class, but if you wait any longer to eat, you don’t know what will happen or what you may do. Well, we’ve got you covered with the five best places to grab lunch and satisfy those pesky hunger pains. There’s a little something for everyone: sandwiches, pseudo-Mexican, pizza, Indian and hot dogs — Northside, Southside and Downtown.
1. Montague’s: your sandwich connoisseur
As far as sandwiches go, there is only one real place to go: Montague’s in Berkeley. Located on Channing Way and Telegraph Avenue, the sandwich spot is the perfect place to grab lunch without venturing too far from campus. Montague’s is prized for its amazing Dutch crunch bread, garlic-y signature spread, equal proportions of meat to bread to veggies and, above all, its massive portions that easily last for two meals. The pastrami and provolone sandwich is perfection. The turkey and ham is equally fresh and juicy. And the combinations of meat, cheese and veggies are endless, allowing you to customize your sandwich and try new varieties. The owners and workers are friendly, and there is even Mario Cart to play while waiting for your sandwich to be made. The place has a unique, quirky atmosphere that is made even better by the top-notch, reasonably priced sandwiches.
2. Chipotle: an oldie but a goodie
Always a hit, Chipotle is fairly consistent and predictably satisfying. You’ve been there before, and you know exactly what to expect, which is comforting when living in a town such as Berkeley. As noted from the lines outside the door during lunch and dinner hour, this place is extremely popular for students. But if you are grabbing lunch later or earlier than the standard 12 to 2 p.m. window, then you will get in and out of there fast. Chipotle offers something for everyone: meat or tofu, burritos or tacos, salads or quesadillas, brown rice or white rice, black or pinto, etc. It’s Mexican food, but not really. Chipotle wins in its customizable nature and large portioning, which is always a score when living on a college-student budget.
3. Sliver: pizza in less than 10 minutes
Need pizza? Head over to Sliver for a slice. It will take five to 10 minutes, cost less than $3 per slice and give you a unique and fresh pizza that won’t leave you feeling quite so guilty or greasy. It’ll deliver that pizza punch without all the regret of some of its city counterparts. Sliver prides itself on making eclectic, delicious and interesting pizzas and specializes in making one particular pizza every day. The result is always amazing and unexpected. You will not be disappointed with your pizza — be it a sweet potato and roasted onion variety or a corn, lime, cojita cheese and potato one.
4. Urbann Turbann: the Northside slice of Indian
Urbann Turbann is essentially the Chipotle of Indian food: It is Indian food on the go. It’s ever so popular for Northside students due to its convenience, quickness and taste. Serving essentially Indian burritos, Urbann Turbann offers many combinations of curries, meats, fillers and condiments, which are all housed in chewy, warm naan. It will satisfy any Indian food craving without requiring you to sit down for 30+ minutes to eat the cuisine formally.
5. Top Dog: the classic
Does this one even need explanation? Top Dog has been a classic in Berkeley for decades. It offers many different types of hot dogs, ranging in flavor (garlic, lemon, etc.), meat (beef, chicken, etc.) and toppings. Grilled up on the spot, your hot dog is sure to be hot, flavorful and complete with that delicious “snap,” if you know what we mean.
The next time you are in a pinch for time, try out one of these awesome restaurants right outside campus. You won’t be disappointed.
Image Sources: Justin Henry, Mr. TinDC, rocor, D Coetzee, Thomas Hawk