Travelling alot in the City means that balanced meals are for the privelaged people, and well students they seem to miss out abit on the good life and nice stable food. However, as I have been travelling for quite a while now, I seem to have developed a routine on where I eat, that isnt too unheathy and also doesnt kill my budget either. I will start by saying that I dont have much time to eat when I am at university in the city, so most of what I eat is Take Out and eaten on the way to classes, or sometimes in the actual lecture halls. Here are the 5 places I eat at regualarly in the City (Belfast) to ensure that I have not spent too much and still can enjoy a proper diet. Day 1: Centra Centra is a great place to get some take away food in a hurry, they are not as expensive as other shops, and as long as they have a hot food counter, they are good enough for me, I normally get a nice pannini, which is made in front of me, in the Centra in Belfast, which to take out normally costs me around £3, thats great value! When I am a bit more skint than that, I opt for a large sausage roll, which costs 69p, I know it isnt healthy food, but its cheap and it fills me up until its time to go home. Day 2: Subway Subway are a life saver, they do a great range of vegetarian sandwhiches as well as some great meat filled ones, the sub of the day is the reason why I chose to eat here alot, as you can get a 6" sandwhich for £1.99 or a 12" for £3.99, thats great value to me as I only ever can eat a 6" at a time, and also you can get a subway card in store that allows you to gain points and trade them in for a free sandwhich every time you buy a sandwhich, you get 30 points per 6" you buy, and it takes 500 points to claim a 6" sandwhich. I know that subway can be high in salt, but if you watch what you put in it, its not that bad and is much better than opting for chips. *for more information on subway see my subway review* Day 3: Student Union There are 2 different cafes in our Queens university students union, the Clements cafe is the best for serving sandwhiches and other foods and they are well priced as well, chargeing only around £2.50 for a nice sandwhich, I like to try and eat here alot as it is close to class and also is reasonably priced for a nice feed. Day 4: The Streat I love this place, and it may be a bit more expensive than my usual hangouts, but when you have the money, its worth it. The reason I love The Streat so much is that they do the best toasted wraps, that are again made in front of you and then brought down to you, it costs around £3.20 for a wrap in The Streat, and then around £1 for a drink of coke, it is cheaper to take out than it is to sit in in The Streat, so sitting in would be around 20-40p more expensive than this. Day 5: Juice This is a great wee cafe in the bus station (Europa), it sells a range of juices that are made freshly in front of you, and also sells Irish Stew, yogarts and bran and all different types of really healthy foods, they also do a take out menu, and are not too expensive, charging around £1-2 for drinks, depending on what you get, and also around £2 for their meals, again depending on what you get. This is a great place for me to eat and stay healthy, especially when I have missed my bus and need to kill time until the next one. These are my favourite healthier(ish) places to take out food in Belfast while I am at university. However if I am ever down staying the night I make sure to get my take outs from Dominos Pizza, who do a great pizza with a range of different toppings, they are quite expensive and could charge around £10 for a pizza and delivery, though their pizzas are so nice it is worth it. Also I like to get a take out from the Pak Lok in Belfast, who do a lovely curry which isnt too hot or spicey, a half and half in this take out would cost around £2-3, and then delivery charges which isnt too bad when there is more than one person ordering to split the delivery. So if you are ever in Belfast and are stuck for what to eat, I hope this review has been helpful in some way.
Being a City workslave means that lunchtimes tend to be either a dash for yet another uninspired, soggy, clamy, overpriced sandwich from either a well known retailer (if you've managed to buy it before the shelves leave only the really dreary ones) or cafe, or else relying on the works canteen AKA overpriced stodge-holes. But no more! Not at least if you have the exceptional fortune of being near a Crazy Salads. Being vegetarian means that the likelihood of choice for lunch is usually remote, but enter Crazy Salads and it's like all your meat-free Christmasses have come at once. OK there is tuna in a few but that's it. Call me dim but it hadn't even dawned on me that CS would be veggie. Usually buffet bar salads will be pasta and meat, rice and meat, sliced meat for protein with the only veggie bits being the green and limp bits of lettuce, generally reserved for garnish. Here it was the opposite, without being heavy about it. It isn't brand as veggie friendly so there isn't anyof the "Cranks" connatations, it is just tasty food that even the meaties out there wouldn't realise was "veggie fodder" . LEt me give you a peak into the £2.50 worth of delights that was todays lunch: hot cous cous, bombay potatoes (not swimming in fat) chinese vegetables, dill fragrant rice, hot shepardess pie, hot veggie lasagne, noodles with sweetcorn, leek and mushroom mix. Ok you're not going to get a plateful of each, but the fixed containers you get are surprisingly spacious and it's only lunch after all! You can eat it there but it is designed primarily for take-away. The food is refreshed, not leave to get baked on and dried up, and there are two servings of each of the 40 or so different "salads" on offer, meaning that there aren't endless queues. It's an efficient and well thought out operation, there is plenty of variety with all tastes catered for. No may/m ayo dishes are marked, descriptions of each type are clear - no mistaking your cracked wheat salad for your cous-cous and it is squeaky clean. Compared to the price of a sandwich and yoghurt, I think Crazy Salads are a good value alternative and by serving hot food as well, I think the winter has just got a whole lot more appertizing. Location: Near Moorgate/Barbican post office near the big M&S sandwich shop! Crazy Salads - you'd be crazy not to!