Photos and Words by Luisa Silva
Many young students live vegetarian, vegan, or gluten-free. Whether for moral reasons, food allergies, or simply to try something new, it is sometimes difficult to find a place that accommodates your needs. Fortunately, Boston University is known for its vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options. But sometimes students want to venture away from campus, explore the city but still have great-tasting food that works with their meal choices. Here are a few restaurants and cafes, close to campus, that promote healthy and alternative dining. FoMu, an ice cream parlor and café, commends itself on being a tasty option for those who cannot and don’t want to eat animal milk-based products. FoMu makes their signature ice creams from a coconut milk base. Their nut flavors are made from an almond-cashew blend, while their soft flavors are made from a soy-base. The café has a modern design with industrial aspects. Modern, twisting, metal sculptures were attached to the wall. The sidewall was lined with a rustic, wooden bench. The bar was a dark, green marble slab with tall, stainless steel chairs. I started hassling them for a quote about their flavors. My lactose-intolerant friend who tried the coffee flavor said, “I don’t like the pressure of coming up with a quote, but I like this,” motioning to her ice cream. FoMu's great alternative to dairy-based ice cream is an inexpensive option. It has a better consistency than froyo and there are so many flavors to choose from; they have everything from vanilla bean to avocado. It’s definitely worth the three-mile trek from central campus.
A rather pricey restaurant, but with beautifully displayed meals, The Elephant Walk boasts its vegan-friendly bicultural menu. This Cambodian-French fusion restaurant is just a hop over the Massachusetts Turnpike from the Boston University East T stop. This restaurant boasts a variety of plates from jumbo wild shrimp to pan-seared organic tofu. It also provides cooking lessons for anyone interested in developing their healthy skills in the kitchen. The restaurant even has a chain in Waltham that donates 3% of its gross sales to a nonprofit organization that is working hard to diminish poverty. This quaint and quietly rustic restaurant is perfect to find a cozy, healthy meal.
Grasshopper, a vegan restaurant, is about half a mile past Packard’s Corner T stop in Allston. A cheap, local place, with everything on the menu under fifteen dollars, this Eurasian style restaurant is an easy dine-in, take-out option. It is famous for its No Name Chicken, which is battered gluten in a sweet and sour sauce, served with assorted steamed vegetables and topped with sesame seeds. This family style restaurant has a bright and vibrant theme. The teal walls have a lasting impression on your meal. If you’re looking for a quick, cheap bite, this is definitely the place for you.
There are dining options all over Boston, from food trucks to award winning restaurants. The trick is to be patient enough to find the right place for you and your alternative eating habits.
FoMu 481 Cambridge St. Allston, MA 02215 617 903 3276
Hours: Sun-Thurs: 11:30am-10pm Fri and Sat: 11:30am-11pm
The Elephant Walk 900 Beacon St. Boston, MA 02215 617 247 1500
Hours: Sun-Thurs: 5pm-10pm Fri and Sat: 5pm-11pm
Grasshopper 1 N Beacon St. Allston, MA 02134 617 254 8883
Hours: Mon-Sat: 11am- 10pm Sun: 12pm (noon)-10pm