Starving college students have some tasty restaurants to try near campus

Spanakopita, a pastry stuffed with a feta, spinach and onion mixture, is one of Turkish Delight's appetizers. Photo courtesy Kennedy Allen.

Village Inn

Location: 1130 E Northern Light Blvd

Hours: 6 a.m. – 10 p.m. every day

Price: $

Village Inn is a small Anchorage-based chain. It has 3 locations around town and serves a variety of comfort food. This sit-down restaurant has a laid-back atmosphere. Its all-day breakfast menu includes skillets, pancakes, and omelets. You’ll also find burgers, sandwiches, subs, and salads among other things. Pies are one of their specialties and you can order a whole one. When checking out, you take your bill to the front to pay.

Max Burger

Location: 5430 E Northern Light Blvd

Hours: Mon. – Fri. 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Sat. 1 – 9 p.m.

Price: $$

Winner of The Northern Light’s 2011 “Best Burger for the Hungry College Student,” this burger joint has seen some better days, with the lobby currently suffering from some structural building problems. Despite that, they still put out a mean burger. Ordering at the counter, you can sit wherever you like, though the leaky roof may dampen your experience a little. They’ve also expanded their menu to include some Hawaiian and Asian cuisine too.

Don Jose's Mexican Restaurant serves up traditional Mexican fare. Photo by Matthew Schmitz.

Don Jose’s Mexican Restaurant

Location: 2052 E Northern Light Blvd

Summer hours: Mon. – Fri. 12 – 9 p.m. Sat. 3 – 9 p.m.

Winter hours: Mon. – Fri. 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sat. & Sun. 12 – 10 p.m.

Price: $$$

This is a sit-down, traditional Mexican restaurant that serves complimentary chips alongside your meal. There is a large outdoor eating area, and they also have a full bar. Winter and summer hours vary so check before you go. There is another location in Homer too.  

Serrano’s Mexican Grill

Location: 2514 E Tudor Rd

Hours: Mon. – Sat. 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sun. 12 – 9 p.m.

Price: $$

This is Serrano’s second location, on Tudor across from McDonald’s. The local chain is a modern update to the traditional Mexican restaurants, with artwork depicting pop Mexican cultural icons such as comedian Roberto Gómez Bolaños, aka “Chespirito.” Their lobby at this location is currently under construction to add a bar, though it should be open by the time school starts. You’ll still find a full selection of traditional Mexican dishes, and they serve beer and wine margaritas. You order at the counter and seat yourself.

Bred and Brew can be identified by the silhouette of a howling wolf on the front of the building. Photo by Matthew Schmitz.

Bread and Brew

Location: 1450 E Tudor Rd

Hours: Mon. – Thu. 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. Fri. & Sat. 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sun. 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Price: $$$

Bred and Brew specializes in sandwiches, pizzas and burgers. They also have some salads and offer beer, wine and cocktails. Their location on Tudor, next to Waldron Pond, has a small outdoor eating area, a bar and large flatscreen with sports playing. A little on the pricey side, they are well worth it. Hands down the best Reuben I’ve ever had. Also, they have some biodegradable straws made out of some plastic substitute – not paper – so they don’t melt down while you’re using them. You order at the counter and pick your own seat.

Golden Gate's Thursday lunch special: Kung Pao Chicken and Sweet and Sour Chicken. Also came severed with soup. Photo by Matthew Schmitz.

Golden Gate

Location: 3500 Northern Light

Hours: Mon. – Fri. 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. Sat. 3:00 – 9:30 p.m.

Price: $$

Golden Gate, located on Tudor Road across from the Tozar Sled Dog Track, serves up some typical Chinese food such as Mongolian beef, chow mein, fried rice, and eggrolls just to name some dishes. They’re a sit-down restaurant and have a decent sized eating area. The proportions are generous too, so many meals can feed two.

Sara’s Too

Location: 2709 Boniface Pkwy

Hours: Mon. – Fri. 7 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. Sat 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Price: $

A local favorite, Sara’s Too is on the corner of Boniface and Northern Lights across from Value Village. The parking lot is a little bit treacherous, with the first turn in leading directly into the exit for their drive through line. Aside from the very small “no-entry” sign, there’s not much to clue you in until you’re making the turn. Ordering is also a little different at Sara’s. You fill out a paper menu with your selections. As the name of their sister location on Arctic implies – Sara’s Sandwiches – their main fare is sandwiches. You can build your own or select from house specialties. They also have salads and chili.

Ichiban Japanese Restaurant

Location: 2488 E Tudor Rd

Hours: Mon. – Fri. 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sat. 12 – 10 p.m.

Price: $$

Ichiban has a large selection of Japanese cuisine to choose from, not just Sushi. Their dining area is small, and they have a small bar section. They are in the strip mall on Tudor across from Walgreens. 

Turkish Delight's hot Elma tea is apple flavored. Served with a jeweled stir spoon. Photo by Matthew Schmitz.

Turkish Delight

Location: 2210 E Northern Light Blvd

Hours: Tue. – Sat. 4 a.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Price: $$$

Open in the evening for dinner, Turkish Delight is a top-notch take on eastern-Mediterranean food. There is a lot of overlap between what you’ll find in Turkish Delight and your typical Greek restaurant such as spanakopita, gyro and baklava. They also have some specialty teas and Turkish coffee. Their extensive appetizer menu can make deciding what to get a challenge. Located on Northern Light Boulevard across from Family Park Medical Center, they have a small and quiet dining area, and they also take reservations.