By Rowena Lindsay

As another year comes to a close, it is time to round up the best Northeastern University had to offer over the past two semesters. From food and drink to concerts and celebrity visits, it has been a busy year.

After polling the student community, the results of the annual Best of NU survey are in. Here is what Northeastern students loved about the 2014-15 school year.

 

Best Dining Hall

The student’s have spoken; Rebecca’s Café serves the best food your meal swipe can get you. Anyone who has stopped by to grab a sandwich when late morning classes get out can attest to its popularity.

Rebecca’s offers a variety of food options and feels like a café rather than a dining hall. The sandwich bar offers tasty toasted paninis, like the California chicken and tuscan turkey, as well as made-to-order sandwiches. The grill features pizza, chicken fingers and a rotating cast of daily specials.

“I love Rebecca’s; their paninis are like spring every day,” Amanda Freyre, freshman international affairs major, said.

Serving breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday, it is located in the basement of Churchill Hall. Also, for those who didn’t know, there are also Rebecca’s Café locations off campus on Boylston and Beacons streets and in Harvard Square.

 

Best Campus Eatery

The Qdoba located on Huntington Ave. was voted the best eatery on campus this year, beating out previous winners Boloco and Chicken Lou’s. With a number of other Mexican food options in the area, including Amelia’s Taqueria, Taco Bell and Boloco, Qdoba has competition. However, Qdoba stands out and has proven its worth to students.

“Qdoba’s definitely the top burrito out of the triad … You know – Qdoba, Chipotle and Boloco,” Thomas Kolek, third-year health science major, said.

Qdoba’s menu consists of a number of burrito, taco, quesadilla, nacho and Mexican gumbo options. With cafeteria-style ordering, Qdoba allows hungry college students to customize their meals, picking from a variety of ingredients including chicken, ground beef, fajita veggies, rice, beans, salsa, sour cream and cheese. Plus, guacamole no longer costs extra.

Qdoba is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. and accepts both Dining and Husky Dollars.

 

Best Restaurant

Symphony Sushi, located on Gainsborough Street, offers students a fancier and more exotic dining option than many of the other locations near campus, while still being affordable.

Fondly called “SymphSush” by some, the restaurant raked in 37 percent of the category’s votes, with Ginger Exchange and the new culinary addition to Huntington Avenue, Amelia’s Taqueria, coming in second and third.

The restaurant boasts a variety of sushi and sashimi rolls, house entrées, noodle dishes, tempura specials and appetizers. Symphony Sushi also has a large selection of red, white and pink wines, several beer options including Japanese beers and sake.

Symphony Sushi is open from 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12:30 to 10 p.m. on Sunday, and welcomes guests to either stay and enjoy the cozy atmosphere or take their food to go.

 

Best Campus Bar

Conor Larkin’s Grill and Tap once again won the title of best campus bar, claiming 80 percent of the votes and easily beating out Our House East and Punter’s Pub.

This quintessential college dive bar is located at 329 Huntington Ave. Being so close to Krentzman Quad, it is perfectly located for students to pop in for a drink after class or work. Its popularity is evident from the  line frequently extending out its doors, but many students are more than willing to wait.

With $3 house ale on tap in addition to its shot of the week, shot ski and dog bowls, it serves all your alcohol needs while not blowing your budget. Conor’s also offers a wide selection of burgers, sandwiches, appetizers and even breakfast foods.

The pub has a series of weekly events including Tuesday night trivia nights and weekend “Kegs and Eggs” brunch. Additionally, every week night there is a happy hour from 3 – 6 p.m. with pub grub specials for just $5. Conor’s even accepts Husky and Dining Dollars.

 

Best Celebrity Appearance

As part of the yearly Homecoming festivities, actor Kevin Spacey spoke to a sold-out Matthews Arena in November. While he is best known for his role in “House of Cards,” Spacey got his start on Broadway’s “Long Day’s Journey Into Night” and has since starred in several films including “American Beauty” and “The Usual Suspects.”

The theme throughout his talk was risk-taking as a path to success. He began by talking about how he got his start in acting – by stealing an invitation to a cocktail party out of sleeping lady’s purse and while at the party convincing director Jonathan Miller to let him audition for “Long Day’s Journey Into Night.”

“It was a surreal experience to see him at Matthews,” Janine Eduljee, a sophomore journalism major, said. “I’ve been watching his films since I was a kid, so to hear him speak and to get advice from him was absolutely fantastic.”

In another portion to the talk, he channeled his “House of Cards” character and presented “Frank Underwood’s Guide to Success in College,” during which he took quotes from the show and turned the manipulative political scheming into advice for 20-somethings.

 

Best Show

Bringing in nearly half the total votes cast, the annual Springfest concert beat out State Champs, Joywave and Michael Tarbox, which all played at afterHOURS this year.

Earlier this month, hip-hop artist Jason Derulo took over Matthews Arena with his hit songs “Wiggle,” “Talk Dirty” and “Trumpets.” He was accompanied by two dancers, who were a great addition to the performance, and DJ Papo, also known as “the DJ with the green mohawk.”

Electronic rock band Awolnation and EDM duo The Knocks opened for Derulo, playing shorter sets but still making an impact on the audience. Although the crowd didn’t seem familiar with The Knocks’ music, it got everyone pumped for the show. Awolnation put on an energetic performance, playing their popular songs “Sail” and “Kill Your Heroes.”

While the show was not as quick to sell out as previous Springfest concerts, it was still clearly a hit with those in attendance.

“I like that they try to bring artists from different genres,” Aline Bissell, sophomore business major with a concentration in management, said. “I kind of discovered Jason Derulo [at the concert]; I had no idea all these songs were his.”

 

Best Crime Log Entry

No overview of the year is complete without a look back at the best student misdemeanors. Among the many stolen laptops and bikes and trips of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, there are always a few entries that bring out a good laugh. Not to mention, the crime log is the most read section of The Huntington News.

This year, the winner is an overly impassioned fan.

“Northeastern University Police Department officers observed a male in section 46 of Matthews Arena who had off taken his shirt and jeans and was jumping around in his boxers. Officers spoke with the 18-year-old student, who admitted to drinking alcohol in his dorm before the game. As the student was aware of the place and time, he was allowed to return to his seat. A report was filed.”

This entry has all the classic elements of an entertaining crime log entry: drunk and disorderly conduct involving an overly enthusiastic freshman who was semi-naked in a public place. What more could you want from the crime log?

 

Photos by Scotty Schenck