The News and Observer ran an AP story today about how some people are responding to the recession when eating out: by sharing dishes. There’s little doubt that the tough economic times have made people cut back on dining budgets, but when the industry slows down, the industry comes up with lots of bargains to draw folks in.
I received a couple of emails from a buddy alerting me of a handful of great local deals. Most locals are aware that Bloomsbury Bistro’s John Toler has been offering a very special three course dinner for two for $50 — that’s for the couple, not per person. There’s quite a lot of choice with this menu.
I learned today that Margaux’s is offering a three course prix fixe dinner on Mondays for $19.95 a person. During the rest of the week it’s only $27.95. The choices are limited, but it’s still a hell of a deal.
Durham’s Vin Rouge, one of the Triangle’s most underrated restaurants, offers an “early bird” 3 course prix fixe menu for $20 and 4 courses for $25. That’s a ridiculous price for this great food put out by chef Matt Kelly, even if it’s offered between 5:30 and 6:30 Monday-Thursday and from 5:30 to 6:00 on Friday-Sunday.
Happen to be in the Crabtree area in the late afternoon? Now I’m no fan of chain restaurants, but when you’re broke, you might have to make some concessions, right? You can always hit the bar at McCormick & Schmicks during their happy hour, from 4 to 6, and order their half pound burger and fries. For $1.95! I’ve heard that their entire happy hour menu is being offered at this ridiculously low price.
Or if you’re in the mood for Italian you could hit Brio and order items of their “Tuscan Tasters” menus from 3-7 Monday through Friday or after 9 PM all week. These items are sold for $2.95 and represent smaller versions of their regular appetizers, but they’re still good sizes. I heard of a couple ordering three of these appetizers, two cocktails and two mini-desserts for $24. Wow!
So do your part to get the economy going. And if you’re headed out for happy hour and end up drinking too much, you can always call these guys to get you and your car home.