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Mar 6, 2009 06:26 PM

cheap eats boston

I will be visiting BU and Northeastern with my daughter in April. Looking for good cheap eats in the area. We will probably be staying near Copley Square or Quincy Market. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

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  1. North End (little Italy) is near Quincy Market - if you're there Mon-Sat around lunchtime (11am-2pm or so), check out Galleria Umberto.. cheap hole in the wall but really satisfying and good! Softball sized arancini filled with beef and cheese, smooth panzarotti, etc.. everything is around $2... only until they sell out. Cash only, I believe..

    2 Replies
    1. re: marilees

      I whole heartedly second this - but I recommend getting there early. I've seen long lines by 11:15. But to be fair - they move quickly! A plus side is that they box things up - so if we are having nice weather that day - you can wander the city/N. End - and have an impromptu picnic!

      1. re: mintchip

        If you are looking for cheap good food in Boston you can't go wrong with Umberto's. It's a little hard to find as they don't have a sign that sticks out, but it's kiddie corner across the street from Mike's pastry, which you can't miss. Both are on Hanover street, tey main street in the North End. Near BU in Kenmore Sq is UBurger, a great little burger joint with great fries and onion rings (good burgers, too).

    2. I love the take out sandwiches at Artu's in the North End (my fave being the roast lamb and marinated eggplant).
      Also chinatown area offers many inexpensive Vietnamese, Taiwanese, Chinese and Malaysian options that are well worth discovering.

      7 Replies
      1. re: nasilemak

        To expand on the Chinatown recommendation Taiwan Cafe is very inexpensive and is one of the best Chinese (Taiwanese) restaurants in the city. The lunch special is $6.50 I believe and you have over 25 choices of dishes. Also in Chinatown you should look into getting a Bahn Mi which will run you only $2.75 each. Mei Sum Bakery and Lu's sandwich shop are my favorites, Mei Sum also has a very good assortment of baked goods as well.

        Taiwan Cafe
        34 Oxford St, Boston, MA 02111

        Mei Sum Bakery Coffee Shop
        40 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111

        Lu's Sandwich Shop
        2 Knapp St, Boston, MA 02111

        1. re: Matt H

          Another spot in Chinatown that is one of my favorites (and that I went to again last night!) is the Hong Kong Eatery on Harrison Avenue. The food is the real deal there (don't go there for spare ribs and chicken fingers) and the prices are very good. I ordered a heaping plate of rice stick noodles with shredded chicken, preserved cabbage, carrots, mushrooms, and green beans, as well as a large order of their outstanding scallion pancakes, all for about $10.50. (It was probably enough food for two people, though I did my best to finish it on my own.)

          1. re: hiddenboston

            HK eatery is one of my go to places in Chinatown as well, great recommendation.

            1. re: Matt H

              at HK Eatery, also like the salt & pepper (dry fried) fish filet, the crispy roast pig (not baby pig unless you order well in advance), salty (hacked) chicken (not to be confused with the salt baked chicken), short ribs w/ black pepper sauce on rice

              1. re: barleywino

                I love HK's noodle soups, such as the one with roast duck & wontons. They're delicious and very inexpensive.

                1. re: Kenji

                  Second the wonton noodle soup. Also like the claypot rice dishes.

                  1. re: nasilemak

                    I third the wonton soup. Wanted to get it the other night when I was there, but decided to try a couple of new dishes...

      2. While there are goods choices near Quincy market, "cheap eats" near Copley Square are tough to find. Even sandwiches can get pricey.

        The best deal is the happy hour bar menu at McCormick and Schmick at the Park Plaza Hotel. Available only from 4-6 and after 9 or thereabouts and only in the bar.

        A number of restaurants have started prix fixe deals to stimulate business on less busy nights, generally Sun-Wed. Check the individual web site for clues or search the board for prix fixe.

        South from Copley, the South End has some reasonably priced places. Coda on Cloumbus at Dartmouth is good. Delux Cafe on Chandler at Clarendon is good as well.

        9 Replies
        1. re: BBHound

          add anchovies in the south end for cheap eats.

          1. re: BBHound

            Steve's is a Greek diner on Hereford at the corner of Newbury Street. Not far from Copley Square and quite good cheap eats. Get the souvlaki sandwich with house-made potato chips.

            1. re: Allstonian

              Steve's gets mixed reviews, with some people not liking it at all, but I think it's pretty good for what it is, and the location is tough to beat.

              1. re: hiddenboston

                last time i had a falafel sandwich at steve's i swear they must have dumped the entire jar of cinnamon into the mix. it was horrible. cafe jaffa right nearby is much better.

                1. re: hotoynoodle

                  Since Steve's is Greek, I wouldn't think of getting falafel there. I usually get the Greek items, such as souvlaki or gyros, and it's always been good.

                  1. re: Allstonian

                    if they suck at it, why do they serve it?

                    1. re: hotoynoodle

                      Hey, no existential questions before lunch!

                      1. re: hotoynoodle

                        That's a fair question and applies to lots of restaurants - for instance, all the Cantonese places with pathetic renditions of Szechuan dishes on their menus, or the Szechuan restaurants who serve up bad American Chinese dishes. Presumably somebody thinks customers want those dishes.

                        It can certainly be argued that it harms a restaurant's reputation for them to serve dishes they obviously don't do well, but it's not like this is an unheard of problem. If I want falafel, I go to a Middle Eastern restaurant like Cafe Jaffa. If I want Greek food, I go to Steve's.

                        1. re: Allstonian

                          i'm a fan of a cafe jaffa too, but on a whim went to steve's. i agree with your parameters of me sticking with what *they* know. lol, i knew better too. ;)

            2. Near BU is an Asian supermarket called Super 88, and the food court in front of it has some great stuff from many different Asian cuisines. This is not a mall food court, this is the real thing. Search the board for "Super 88 food court" and you'll find plenty of details.

              Super 88 Market and Food Court
              1095 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

              1 Reply
              1. re: BobB

                Super 88 will also be full of BU students, so it might be kind of fun for them to eat there. We're "old" but eat there all the time - great food and cheap to boot.

              2. Thanks for all the great suggestions. We look forward to eating our way through Boston!

                2 Replies
                1. re: garysusan

                  Also, Union Sq Allston (take the T outbound down Comm Ave a few stops past BU) (just a couple blocks past Super 88) - Burmese/Yoma, Korean/Roppongi (sp?) Buk Kyung (sp?) Jo Jo Taipei (Taiwanese) Shanghai Gate (Chinese) Carlo's Cucina (Italian) among others. Boston Globe had a recent write-up on many - but just a bit of research on the board on any of these will get you lots of feedback.

                  Craving something? Just ask and we may well have it (Pueblan? Cambodian?)

                  1. re: fredid

                    This thread is abt 2 yrs old - thought I would BUMP it before my next foray into Boston!
                    Thanks CH's!