When the parents aren't in town and there's no date to impress, college kids just want some down-to-earth, good food that satisfies their appetites and budgets. From late-night munchies to study-break lunches, many meals are hard to find. Around the University of Miami, students don't have to turn to McDonald's or chain diners — there are plenty of fast-casual eateries that offer high-quality, low-cost dishes. Here are some of the standouts in Coral Gables.
Taco Rico offers staples of Tex-Mex cuisine at low prices in a casual environment.
Photo courtesy of Taco Rico
6. Taco Rico
By the time freshman year comes to a close, most students have had their fair share of Chipotle and start seeking something fresh. Enter Taco Rico. The Tex-Mex restaurant offers all the crunchy, cheesy, spicy flavors college kids crave just a few blocks from campus. It’s the best place for no-frills Mexican cuisine in the area, and local favorites like enchiladas
Swensen's also serves the Nica burger as sliders.
Photo courtesy Swensen's
In the age of complicated culinary concepts and unpronounceable menu items, it’s refreshing to dine at a simple all-American eatery like Swensen’s. Yes, it’s old-fashioned and maybe even a bit cliché, but this grill and ice-cream parlor
The brisket ($15) at Buns & Buns is served with a freshly baked brioche bun.
4. Buns & Buns
Bread is the name of the game at this self-described “gastro-fast” spot. For less than $15, you can savor warm sandwiches with a wide range of global influences, from tempura
Whip N Dip is the go-to place for ice cream in Coral Gables.
Photo courtesy Whip N Dip
It’s time to forget the fro-yo frenzy and return to good
Shake Shack serves up a high-quality version of the classic burger meal.
Photo by Jacquelynn D. Powers
2. Shake Shack
Don’t underestimate Shake Shack. This chain is taking over the world one burger at a time, shaking up counter service with expectation-exceeding menu items like the killer cheese-stuffed shroom burger ($6.99). When
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
Bagel Emporium has all the classic breakfast dishes, including nova platters.
Photo by John Zur
1. Bagel Emporium
At this strip-mall deli directly across from campus, you’ll find a pretty even split of groggy, sweatpants-clad college kids nursing their hangovers and elderly ladies out to lunch. But even if you’re perfectly sober and under the age of 80, Bagel Emporium is a solid option for hefty breakfast platters at student-budget prices. For less than nine bucks, you can get two eggs any style with your choice of meat, a side, a bagel, and a cup of joe. The deli also offers sandwiches, salads, and lunch platters — and the tuna melt is a delicious way to take advantage of the homemade bagels. In an area that lacks a family-owned, homestyle diner that’s so often found near college campuses, Bagel Emporium is the casually comforting spot Coral Gables needs.