When Campus Food Doesn’t Cut It

Picture this: it’s a Sunday afternoon. Your stomach is grumbling. Your head is spinning. You ask yourself: “Where am I going to get my next meal?” You sift through your mental Rolodex of campus food options and your heart and stomach sink in sickening tandem. You, anguished student, come to a conclusion: “I don’t want any of this.”

As students confined to greasy or undercooked campus food, we must explore the options of buying and cooking your own food. We must venture outside the iron gates to a local grocery store!

There are three things to take into consideration when choosing where to shop: price, location, and food quality. The first, and arguably most important, is price. Most of us students can’t break the bank whenever we’re craving some non-campus food, especially those living in New York City. When everything inexplicably costs $30, affordable options are a must. The second is location. While we all would like to think we’re able to lug a heavy bag of groceries a mile home, we should be careful not to get caught in our own hubris. The third is food quality. Being cognizant of the freshness of the food you buy might save you a bout of stomach trouble!

For this chapter, I’ve asked my friends, roommates, and fellow grocery-shoppers on a student’s budget: where should I buy my groceries?

The most popular choice is Modern Market, at 2385 Arthur Ave. Modern Market is my personal favorite for its fresh produce and convenient location. While it’s on the more expensive side, I’m a firm believer that sometimes it’s worth it to splurge on quality fall fruits, spring veggies, winter legumes, etc.

Modern Market is situated between 186th and 187th in a particularly lush block of Arthur Ave.
Image credit: yelp.com

Those who recommended Fine Fare on 2645 Webster Ave do so most emphatically. Boasting low prices and wide aisles, Fine Fare fans insist that this fine establishment is worth the walk to the other side of the Metro North train tracks. On a personal note, my roommates shop at Fine Fare, and while they return from grocery shopping panting, sweating, and sore, they are never complaining.

Fine Fare has that nostalgic feel that’s worth the walk.
Image credit: marketreportblog.com

If you’re interested in a Fordham-specific option, the Arthur Avenue retail market is definitely the most expensive (costing an AARM and a leg! haha), but has probably the best quality groceries and fresh food available in the immediate area. There are over a dozen vendors peddling their specialties, including but not limited to: fresh fruit, cured meats, coffee, and even cigars! However, given this odd assortment of available goods, I’d argue that the retail market is more of a touristy experience than a reliable grocery spot.

The Arthur Ave retail market really feels like a whole other world.
Image credit: edc.nyc

A final option: getting groceries delivered from Aldi. Some people I know swear by this, saying that it’s affordable, convenient, and good for resisting temptation to buy junk food because you don’t physically see it. If you’re on a specific diet, or if you’re just trying to steer yourself away from Ben & Jerry’s or Tostitos Hint of Lime chips (not speaking from experience or anything), this is a good option. 

However, in the spirit of engaging with one’s community, I can’t in good faith recommend that you ONLY order groceries online from a large chain! It’s important to support local businesses like the ones I mentioned before. Get out there and talk to people—recluses don’t have any fun. So buy your own groceries, like a grown-up!

For a special student discount on groceries near you, check out Uptown Whole Foods!

by Mia Crocco

Mia is a rising junior at Fordham University – Rose Hill studying English and theology. In her free time, Mia enjoys cooking, collaging, and playing the piano and guitar.

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