The Lumberjack student newspaper

My beef with Humboldt cuisine


By Jasmin Shirazian

I love singing Humboldt’s praises, I really do. It took a minute for me to warm up to this little village tucked away so far from my home, but I’ve grown to enjoy almost everything about the area. Besides the food. 

Humboldt is truly lacking in 2 things: ethnic people and ethnic food. Maybe I’m spoiled, privileged and blessed to have grown up so close to so many different cultures, but it truly disheartens me to see people up here enjoy the white-washed ethnic establishments and even compare it to food down south – that they’ve never even tried. I hate to break it to you, but you haven’t eaten until you’ve eaten food in southern California. I’m talking by the border, southern California. 

What I’m trying to say is, there is no real, authentic Mexican restaurant that would ever name themselves “Hey Juans.” That’s like going to a burger place called “Hi John.” It’s a weird name and I would question the food. The burger would probably be raw. Not to mention, whatever you order is probably gonna cost your entire life savings and then some. Seriously, who charges an extra $3 for avocado? I will literally just go and buy a full avocado. Let’s not be silly, crazy and goofy now. 

Food in Humboldt is so insanely overpriced that it genuinely hurts me when I indulge in a little treat and decide to eat out. I just cannot wrap my head around the fact that “Hole in the Wall Great Sandwiches” charges $17 for a turkey sandwich. Like, that makes me physically ill. How do you not feel like a demon charging more for a sandwich than the hourly wage you pay your employees? Personally, I would feel morally corrupt, but to each their own.

Don’t even get me started on the bagel places up here. Yeah, “Los Bagels,” this one’s for you. An extra $1 for each topping? When the base price of this god forsaken bagel is already like, what, $5? Now you want to charge me an extra $1 for 3 slices of an onion? Criminal behavior. You are robbing me. Thief. 

Anyway, an hour away from the border, San Diego County is home to the most delicious food you could imagine. There’s Korean BBQ, Thai, traditional Mexican, Persian, Ethiopian, Brazilian and anything else you could ever imagine. Even random mashups of food, like the newly opened “MochiNut,” which is literally like mochi and donuts smushed together. 

If you drive north a couple hours, you’ll find yourself in LA, where the options are equally endless, but you’re definitely gonna feel it more in your wallet. At least, in LA, the overpriced food is usually worth it. I love LA – if you can ignore the transplants – but there’s nothing like going to Castañeda’s at 5 am with your friends because you couldn’t sleep and then heading to La Jolla to watch the sunrise. 

 That’s another thing; down south there are an unlimited amount of options that stay open late enough for potheads like me to be able to run out and get a munchies meal. If it isn’t open 24 hours, chances are it doesn’t close until at least 2 am. 

And then there’s the lack of fast food in Humboldt. It is genuinely hard to convince my friends to come visit me up here when there’s a KFC, but not a Popeyes. I get wanting to keep it mom-and-pop shoppy, but who in their right mind picked a KFC over Popeyes? The white man’s fried chicken over cajun-style fried chicken? Inherently racist. 

That’s pretty much my only beef with Humboldt – the lack of seasoned beef. The air here is nicer, I can drink water from the tap without worrying about hundred-year-old minerals from deteriorating pipes, the foliage is incomparable. At the end of the day, though, I need to not be the only middle eastern person in a hundred mile radius, and I need access to that food to be happy. In my not-so-humble opinion, Humboldt would be perfect if it just had more color to it. 

Share This Post

More Stories

Nina G uses comedy to start conversations

During the virtual comedy event held by the SDRC, Nina Ghiselli tells her story and emphasizes the importance of student disability resources within schools.

It’s not just the Capitol Police

As the world watched from their televisions on January 6, we witnessed scenes unfold before our eyes that were, to many, unimaginable: supporters of President Trump swarmed the steps of the U.S. Capitol Building, then proceeded to break in and

The San Jose State University Football Team Comes to Humboldt

On a day’s notice from administration, the SJSU football team spends a week and a half in Humboldt practicing because their county did not allow it. Students react to their presence on campus in the midst of a pandemic. Directed

Homelessness in Humboldt, CA

This is the first trailer of a homeless documentary created by HSU students. We have spent months filming and will continue to film throughout the next year. Follow the heartbreaking stories of the homeless community around Humboldt county and the

Thrifty Arcata

Taking a tour of the local thrift shops in Arcata during the COVID-19 pandemic. Directed and produced by Skylar Gaven.

House Plants Generate Peace and Meaning During the Pandemic

Three different people with the same love for plants! House plants have become quite popular these days especially since we’re all basically stuck inside during the pandemic. Not only are they aesthetically pleasing, but these beautiful green oxygen-makers provide more

Prop 22 represents political favoritism of money over workers’ rights

California’s passing of proposition 22 on Nov. 5 represents a frustrating history of workers’ rights being trampled by the overwhelming influence of greed in politics.  This proposition forces app-based workers to be classified as independent contractors, rather than employees. This

Remembering Evelyn Andrews 10 months after her passing

By Katelyn Dendas It has been 10 months since my friend, teammate and freshman year dorm mate, Evelyn Andrews, passed away. I don’t remember what the grief counselor said or what transpired after that Monday, but I do remember arriving

Protestors seek to defund HSUPD

Two local, activist organizations work together to stage a sit-in against Humboldt State’s police department.

Getting stuck on the Trump train

Writer Anthony Aragon details his experience of accidentally joining a pro-Trump car rally.

Justin Turner exposes the World Series to COVID-19

Justin Turner didn’t need to be the story in the wake of the Dodgers’ first World Series victory in 32 years. Instead here we are, wondering what sort of, if any, punishment Major League Baseball will decide to hand down

Four more years of fear

News Editor Carlos Holguin explains why he is worried about the next four years.

Dismal democracy

The Lumberjack editorial staff comments on America’s flawed electoral system As the world watches the United States 2020 election results, waiting for our pseudodemocratic process to churn out a new president, historically unprecedented voting methods misrepresents the reported Election Day

The Mario triple pack invokes a nostalgia attack

When I was a child, the first video game system I owned was a Nintendo 64. Among the games I played was Super Mario 64. I played it all the time and when I wasn’t playing it, I was lying

Women’s lacrosse drops their competitive season

Greta Roberts, president and player of Humboldt State University’s women’s lacrosse team, made the decision with her coach and teammates to cancel the upcoming spring season. The team decided that not being able to recruit in the fall would be

Dobby’s proposition opinions

Haven’t voted yet? Well, you’re running out of time. Here’s a quick rundown of California’s propositions on the ballot this year

Corporations buy out propositions

In a series of general and misleading advertisements, corporate backers of Propositions 22 and 23 show their grubby hands

CDOR continues virtually

The Campus and Community Dialogue On Race returns covering global justice for Black Lives.

Indigenous Food Sovereignty

Local food management practices of the Tolowa Dee-ni, Yurok and other indigenous peoples.

Humboldt State Admin attempts to discredit the Lumberjack

***A Lumberjack editorial represents both the majority opinion of the student newspaper’s editorial board, nine editors, as well as the overwhelming majority of Humboldt State University’s student body. Collectively, an editorial echos, embodies and advocates for community beliefs.*** Insensitive communications

Music of the Moment 6

21 Savage and Metro Boomin drop a classic with “Savage Mode II”

Spartans arrive at HSU despite campus concerns

***Editor’s note: SJSU football program was tested in congruence with Mountain West conference guidelines*** The Spartans have arrived and this time they’re not carrying spears or shields. Instead the San Jose State football team stepped onto the Humboldt State campus

Music of the Moment 5

After shooting Megan Thee Stallion, Tory Lanez cancels himself

Welcome to the Twilight Zone

Comparisons between episodes of the classic TV show The Twilight Zone and our own dismal reality

Music of the Moment 4

YoungBoy Never Broke Again dodges the sophomore slump with his new album “Top.”

Self-Care Cuts

Changing your hair to change your life

HSU Seaweed Farm sets sail

The first commercially-approved seaweed farm in California will be on the map.

Music of the Moment 3

For better or worse, Big Sean is likely gone for good.

More Layers, More Protection?

Humboldt State demands double masking on campus, does more layers equal more protection?

The Ethnic Studies Bill is a Blessing

Ethnic Studies will thankfully become mandatory for all California State University students – as it should be.

The Complex Interface of Humans and Wildfires

How fire suppression is a mixed bag in Humboldt County Every fire season, blankets of smoke roll over Humboldt County. Here on the coast, that’s as close to wildfires as some of us get. But our practice of fire suppression

Defund HSU’s Police Department

Incidents of racism from the former UPD Chief, past examples of excessive force from current officers and a shrinking university budget.

How Not To Be Bitten By A Kitten

Please prepare to be prey Congratulations, a baby feline has recently come into your life. If they’re anywhere from 2-18 months, they bite. They see you as prey. Because you are prey. You always have been. You always will be.

Graduating Into Uncharted Waters

HSU graduates attempt to navigate a world turned upside-down by COVID-19 In May, Humboldt State University graduated hundreds of students, as it does every year. Unlike past years, graduates didn’t get to shake hands with their respective dean and receive

HSU Cultural Center Budget Slashed

Associated Students leaves student body devastated after significant reductions in cultural center’s budget.

All aboard the plague ship

Unprecedented times are met with normalized behavior, HSU puts students and community members at higher risk after reopening campus and student housing.

Music of the Moment

The hip-hop community rallies behind the Black Lives Matter Movement

Inside the Immune System

How the body uses multiple levels of defense against foreign intruders

Catcalling Can’t Continue

Verbal harassment toward women is about control and the assertion of gender discrimination