Whoever decided to interrupt the handiwork of the Washington city planners by discontinuing the sequences of numbered and lettered streets through the insertion of Prospect and Potomac Streets must have been wise beyond his or her years. While at first I doubted the necessity of such confusing decisions occurring exactly in the middle of the alphabet and in between 33rd and 32nd Streets, I have come to understand its cosmic significance.

Where Prospect meets Potomac is where yummy meets stomach, thanks to the combined powers of the Booeymonger delicatessen and Chu’s Cafe. Next door neighbors in terms of location, these two small restaurants also share the common bond of offering unique and delicious dining experiences.

My dining pleasures on the corner of deliciousness began freshman year with a handful of dinners at Booey’s. Of course, I was thrown at first by the intricate “order here” and “pay there” system, but after a few trips, I was able to catch on. With sandwich names as silly as “Pita Pan” and “Tuna Turner,” I knew that I had found the right place to eat.

The sandwiches were always large and great, but it was the reusable plastic cups that sealed the deal for me. I know that I have frequented Booey’s at least 64 times since freshman year … because that is the number of large drink cups adorned with the name of the restaurant laying of the floor of my room in a neat stack. The collection has become far less of a chore to maintain now that Booey’s has become a Pepsi establishment, switching a little more than a year ago from its earlier Coke roots.

My experiences with Chu’s began later in my college career, probably not until the beginning of my junior year. The simple fact was that if I was hungry and walking up Prospect Street, I never made it past Booey’s to realize that the deliciousness continued. The introduction was quick and addicting. Now, a week without Chu’s usually means a week in a different state or country. For one meal or another, a lunch here, a dinner there, I usually end up at Chu’s.

The combination of the quality of the food, student-friendly prices, the presence of Pepsi products and the overall atmosphere place Chu’s at the top of my favorite places to eat. Mrs. Chu is the primary point of contact for customers, and after a few trips, she has a knack of knowing what you are going to order before you can ask for it. Mr. Chu handles the kitchen, and his handiwork is delicious. Implicitly, this combo is one of the best features of the restaurant.

As a student away from home-cooked meals, I not only appreciate a good meal to eat but also the atmosphere of a family. Sure, my family could be said to be more Italian than Chinese, but the general concept of eating a meal within the presence of mother and father figures goes a long way in my subconscious.

Eating at college without the supervision of people who understand the distinction between protein and carbohydrates can be quite a challenge. (Fortunately, I have learned a little more about nutrition over the past few years. Pasta plus water does not equal healthy). Options are plentiful at times and sparse at others, with options of cooking, visiting the dining hall or spending money to go to a restaurant. But if you happen to be in the direction of Prospect Street around lunch or dinner time, the choices can be a lot simpler and even a little healthier thanks to two establishments that have put together the ingredients to make great places to eat.

Joe Musumeci is a senior in the college and contributing editor and member of the board of directors for The Hoya.

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