Cheap Eats

Hungry for a bargain? The metro area is full of dining deals where you can eat well for $8 or less!

February 2003

In tough economic times, it’s easy to think that cooking at home is the best way to save money. But given that time is such a precious commodity these days, one can easily make the case that dining out is the more affordable option. (Just tally the cost of your time for grocery shopping, cooking time, and cleanup).

So whether you’re scrambling to make ends meet or you simply want to stretch your dining dollars, there are a lot of dining options to make your dinero go further. You can frequent restaurants known for good, inexpensive food. “Graze” for dinner at happy hour buffets. Visit lunch buffets with great deals, and eat your main meal at noon. Patronize restaurants offering huge portions and split the meal with a buddy, or take home half for a meal the next day.

Regardless of your financial circumstances, metro Denver and Boulder offer up any number of upscale, modest, and downright funky local spots where you can get great grub at rock-bottom prices.

Under Seven Bucks:

Il Fornaio/LoDo


1631 Wazee St., 303-573-5050.

Ah, the Italians know how to treat women! For lunch in LoDo, Il Fornaio is serving a La Bella Donna Speciale (beautiful women special). This $6.95 lunch special includes a soup or salad with select entrées that rotate weekly. In one week alone, the special included pasta made with semolina and saffron, tossed with rotisserie chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, cucumbers, and roasted peppers, served with the soup of the day.