Like many people in the world, I’m a big fan of food.
I’m currently halfway through my third year as a Yelp Elite, I’m a Food Literacy Project fellow, and I most recently started an Instagram where I document my food journeys. It seems fitting, then, that I write a blog about the best places to grab a bite in the square.
College on a college budget: cheap eats
There is a possibility you may grow tired of eating in the dining hall (or maybe not, HUDS is great!). When you do, here are some great places to grab a bite under 10 dollars.
One of the most common questions I get as a tour guide is “where should we grab lunch?” Unless they have some great distaste for Greek cuisine, I will always point them to Saloniki.
El Jefe’s Taqueria
Jefe’s is a fan favorite on this campus, although there is a slight rivalry between this fast-casual Mexican place and another nearby fast-casual Mexican place, Felipe’s. Although Jefe’s might have a slightly less ornate vibe, it’s open until 4 a.m. EVERY NIGHT and there’s no extra charge for queso or guac. C’mon now.
Hot take that OTTO is the best slice in the Square? Maybe. I have to say, though, nothing screams “innovation that excites!” like their Blue Cheese, Roasted Pear & Arugula slice. Also, the people who work here are simply the best. Good vibes all around, and great for first-year students with an incredible location by Harvard Yard.
“Dinner is on me!”: when you don’t have to pay
Throughout your time at Harvard, you can certainly finesse opportunities to eat on someone else’s dime. A popular way to do this is through Classroom to Table, a program where Harvard will pay for you and a professor to go out to eat!
Russell House Tavern
Russell House is classic American fare, but you can also find some great seafood dishes here. It’s where I had to explain to my freshman seminar professor what being a “Yelp Elite” was as I took a photo of my dish. Fantastic salmon.
Hourly Oyster House
Hourly is nice because it’s bright and airy inside -- a sharp contrast from the darkness of Russell House. Their dishes are innovative but simple. Also great fish. Obviously.
I would say you can’t go wrong with food in Harvard Square, but you definitely can. Trust the upperclassmen as they guide you to their favorite late-night spots: there are plenty!