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Congratulations on getting into Barnumbia! Now that many of you are beginning to make a more definite decision about where you’ll go to school, Required Reading’s going to start getting into the nitty-gritty details about life in MoHi. Subscribe to never miss a beat.

Now that you’re in college, you’ll be expected to do grown-up stuff, like pay your taxes and buy groceries. We here at Spectrum can’t help you with your taxes, but we can give you the run-down on all the grocery stores in MoHi.

Food in New York is expensive, but not all grocery stores are created equal. You’ll have plenty of choices within a ten-block radius, and eventually you’ll get a feel for where you can buy what you need at a bargain price.

Morton Williams (aka, MoWills)

Location: 115th Street and Broadway

Hours: Monday - Sunday: 24/7

Morton Williams is the closest grocery store to all first-year dorms, so it’s super convenient if you don’t want to carry your groceries a long distance. It’s open 24 hours, so it’s also great for satisfying those late-night cravings (although if you do your shopping late on weekends, you will run into drunk people). If your wallet and bank account are crying, you can pay with Flex Dollars.

Pros: Close to campus, has all the basics

Cons: Hella expensive, selection is more limited than other stores (like Westside)

Approximate price range: $$$$


Location: 115th Street and Broadway

Hours: Monday - Friday: 6:30 a.m. - midnight; Saturday - Sunday: 8 a.m. - midnight

M2M, which stands for Morning 2 Midnight, is an Asian grocery store. Students have been a li’l wary about shopping there ever since it got a C health rating last year. It has since updated its rating to a B, but like my parents, Columbia kids only remember the bad grades. My take? It’s a great place to buy Asian snacks and prepackaged stuff (with Flex!) that you wouldn’t be able to get at traditional grocery stores, but I would steer clear of food they prepare in the store.

Pros: Close to campus, only place that offers certain Asian delicacies (think mochi, etc.)

Cons: Not the cleanest place, can get pretty cramped inside

Approximate price range: $$

Milano Market

Location: 113th Street and Broadway

Hours: Monday - Sunday: 6 a.m. - midnight

Milano bills itself as a “gourmet” grocery store, which imo just means it’s more expensive. It takes Flex, though, so I guess it has that going for it. And it’s tasty.

Pros: Pretty good sandwiches, great sushi, good place to go if you’re feeling bougie

Cons: Goodbye, money

Approximate price range: $$$$$

Westside Market

Location: 110th Street and Broadway

Hours: Monday - Sunday: 24/7

Westside, like MoWills, is also your typical 24/7 grocery store. It’s bigger than MoWills and also stocks more fresh groceries and pre-made meals, which is ideal for any college student. Despite the extra walking, it’s cheaper than MoWills, which is why some people make the “trek” to 110th. I would still say it’s pretty convenient (especially if you’re at the Spec office).

Pros: Takes Flex, has a much greater variety than MoWills, good soup bar (with free samples), Westside cookies are legendary

Cons: I guess it’s kind of far? Not really, though.

Approximate price range: $$$

Appletree Market

Location: 120th Street and Amsterdam Avenue

Hours: Monday - Sunday: 24/7

If you’re on campus, Appletree might not be your first choice for groceries, but it’s fairly close to Plimpton (one of the Barnard upperclass dorms that Columbia students can live in). Like MoWills and Westside, it’s open 24 hours, and will get the job done if you need your groceries quickly. However, it sadly does not take Flex.

Pros: Open 24/7, helpful if you live in Plimpton and don’t want to walk the circumference of the earth just to get a half gallon of milk

Cons: Kind of far and doesn’t even take Flex

Approximate price range: $$$

Honorable mentions

For those of you who are ~bougier~ than us regular folk, the nearest Whole Foods is on Columbus Avenue and 97th Street, which is an 18-minute walk. Despite being kinda far, Whole Foods does take Flex.

The nearest Trader Joe's is on Broadway and 72nd Street (a short 1 train excursion away).

At Barnumbia, you’ll definitely never go hungry. Wherever you are around campus, groceries are always a walk away.

Know any other nearby grocery stores that we missed? Let us know on our Facebook, Twitter, or Snapchat @CUSpectrum.

Victoria Yang is a SEAS first-year and Spectrum staff writer. Every week she walks to Westside because its Vitamin Water is 50 cents cheaper than MoWi’s. Reach her at

required reading stores grocery stores city nyc mohi morningside heights westide morton williams milanos m2m appletree
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