For many Emory students, going back to school means less eating out and fewer home-cooked meals. Specifically for freshman, the DUC becomes the main source of sustenance (with the occasional Cox visit on the side). However, there will be times when you wish to venture off campus, and Emory Village’s convenience will provide many options. Here’s a breakdown of most of the places in the Village:

I would like to start with the two highest-quality restaurants in the Village – an Italian pasta joint and an American breakfast spot.

Saba: One of my favorite places in the Village, this pasta joint has many different options. If you don’t see that particular option on the menu, Saba will be happy to combine any shape of pasta and sauce they have for you. They also serve sandwiches and a few salads, if you’re not feeling like a big bowl of pasta with a slice of bread on the side. Their lasagna is an underrated option that never disappoints.

Rise-N-Dine: Along with Saba, Rise-N-Dine is one of the best places, in my opinion, in the Village. Only open for breakfast and lunch, Rise-N-Dine is known for their great breakfast options including eggs, waffles and French toast alongside fantastic coffee. But with good food and reasonable prices come long lines – going after 8:30 a.m. on a Saturday spells disaster.

These next few restaurants in the Village are not the finest and are Americanized versions of other types of cuisine. That being said, we don’t always want a totally authentic meal – that’s why we love restaurant chains.

Chipotle: If you haven’t heard of Chipotle by now, stop reading and go try it. If you’re still reading, there’s not much to say that you probably don’t know already. Always consistent and satisfying at a fair price, Chipotle continues to be one of my go-to spots for lunch and dinner. But consume with caution: sources chosen to remain anonymous have said that Chipotle’s spicy food has a history of “resurfacing” during nights of partying.

Zoe’s Kitchen: Located right across the street from the Starbucks at the bookstore, Zoe’s was new to the Village around spring semester last year and became popular for serving big portions of healthy Greek food. Boasting a spotlessly-clean interior, Zoe’s is fairly reasonable in price and has great variety. With options from steak to chicken to shrimp to grains to veggies, everyone can probably find something he or she likes.

Doc Chey’s: Who doesn’t love a big bowl of salty noodles, veggies and your choice of protein? Douse in Sriracha, pour on the sesame seeds and you’ve got yourself the epitome of an Asian-American dish.

These next two places are low-key but always provide good eats at even better prices.

Dave’s Cosmic Subs: Dave’s is often forgotten, as it is the farthest walk in the Village and housed in an unassuming shack. An edgy place with most sandwiches named “Dave’s ____,”  the sub shop always comes through with satisfying sandwiches. Don’t judge a book by its cover. The food definitely tastes better than the way that the plastic tarp covering the outside seating area looks.

Falafel King: Unfortunately, Falafel King does not serve as good a falafel as you’d find in Israel, but with the theme of Americanized foreign cuisine, who can blame them? It’s solid, and so is their shawarma and sushi. Wait, what? Sushi at a place called Falafel King? Yes, they serve various types of sushi and ramen as well. Falafel King really is quite international. Just make sure to carry cash or Visa since American Express is not accepted.

The Village’s wide variety of options definitely makes up for the fact that most of the restaurants are chains. Almost every major type of foreign cuisine can be found somewhere in the Village; it’s pretty difficult not to find something you like. Plus, everything is within a few minutes’ walking distance, so if your friends want Falafel King but you’re not in the mood, just walk a few steps to Chipotle or Zoe’s and grab something you like better. I omitted a few restaurants (Bad Dog Taqueria, Tin Drum and Panera Bread) that I would recommend to avoid, or at least visit sparingly. I don’t particularly care for the food at these three places and have experienced poor service for overpriced food at Bad Dog. But freshman year is all about trying new things, so I encourage you to give everything a chance at least once and decide for yourself what you like best.

– By Ethan Samuels