You Are What You Eat: The Working Student

Originally posted on April 10. We wish people would email us to be profiled for this feature. Also, Jess is now 24.

Name: Jess Mullen
Age: 23
Occupation: Bookstore Receptionist/Student/Blogger (One Falling Star)
Neighborhood: Roslindale

MenuPages: So, Jess, what’s your favorite restaurant in Boston?
Jess: I love Betty’s Wok and Noodle! You walk in, and it’s got this cool swinging 60s look (but chill, and kind of dark), with music ranging from the 40s to the 70s that all the waiters dance and sing along to (I would too – sometimes I do). And the food – I haven’t even tried most of the dishes, but they all look good. My favorite thing on the menu is the customized noodle dish, where you choose one of four kinds of noodles, one of eight kinds of sauce, a protein (like chicken, or tofu, or shrimp), and then – and this is great for me because I’m picky – you can either let them throw in whatever vegetables they feel like or you can choose from a veggie bar. Then they wok it all together to make the best food you’ve ever had. The drinks are great, too. They have a few delicious sangrias, a few sakes on tap, and a lot of sake-based cocktails. SO good. And such a good time.

MP: What’s the Boston-area meal you crave most?
Jess: I’d have to say the Lunch for Henry pizza at Veggie Planet. The whole grain crust is topped with sliced butternut squash, goat cheese, and caramelized onions. I don’t actually like caramelized onions, so I substitute broccoli, and it is awesome.

MP: Where do you do your grocery shopping?
Jess: I am spoiled by having Roslindale’s Village Market at the end of my street, so I tend to go there out of convenience. I love Trader Joe’s, but only go when I feel motivated to take the Green Line. And I am overwhelmed by the cluttered greatness of Cardullo’s. Sometimes I buy tea or Cadbury chocolate there.

MP: Do you miss any now-closed Boston restaurants?
Jess: I miss Curious Liquids. If you look in the basement of the Fox News station (awful!), the one that’s across from the State House, you can still see the little alcoves in the wall where they had those antique easy chairs and coffee tables. Sitting in there with a caramel mocha steamer and pretending to study is one of my favorite memories of growing up in Boston.

MP: Where do you go when it’s drinking time?
Jess: I’m a big believer in the People’s Republik [in Cambridge], with its Communist memorabilia (including a Russian “Dr. No” poster!), but I also love Atwood’s Tavern. I think they have about 15 beers on tap – the kinds of beers you don’t see on tap very often, like Belhaven and Sea Dog Blueberry. And the people who work in both places are very friendly and have great taste in music.

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You Are What You Eat: The Working Student