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Welcome to Mercer Island and Bellevue CB Fans

November 25, 2013

cheapbastardsseattle3Thanks so much to those of you who attended the readings of “The Cheap Bastard’s Guide to Seattle” at the Mercer Island and Bellevue libraries earlier in the month. As promised, here’s a quick recap of the issues covered during both readings. (Sorry for the unexpected delay. I was called out of town to attend a funeral just as I prepared to post this.)

CHEAP STUDENT EATS. As I mentioned, there are a number of restaurants in local culinary school programs that offer good deals. Cafe Alki and the Alhadeff Grill are both part of the South Seattle Community College’s Culinary program and both offer great deals with the Alhadeff Grill charging only $13.95 for a three-course meal. The only disadvantage: It’s only open from 11 to 12:50 when school is in session. Bellevue is also close to the Chef City Grille at the Lake Washington Institute of Technology in Kirkland, which is open from 11 am to 1:30 pm.

OTHER CHEAP EATERIES. What the Pho offers small pho for $7.95. Araya’s Place has a vegan lunch buffet for $9.99. Ikea also has great food deals for kids (free), families and cheap bastards looking for a cheap meal. Sandwiches at Bakeman’s start at $3.75, Bahn Mi at Seattle Deli for $2.50 and an unbelievably large-sized small pho at Pho Than Brothers in Bellevue for around $6.

C’MON GET HAPPY. Ruth’s Chris does many happy hour items for $7 including a steak sandwich with fries, spicy lobster or a crab BLT. McCormick and Schmick’s Seafood and Steaks happy hour food is even better. It runs from around 4 to 6 p.m. with prices starting at $2.95 and going all the way up to a half pound cheeseburger and fries for $5.95.

The Hi-Life’s not-so-early bird breakfast runs from 8:30 to 11 a.m. and all of the dishes on it are $5.75. There are late night happy hours at 5 Spot, Peso’s Kitchen & Lounge, Hattie’s Hat and Toulouse Petit. Toulouse Petit has 30 items on its happy hour menu for $5 or less and from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Tuesdays it has a special it calls meange a tois with five dishes selling at $3 each. McCormick and Schmick’s actually fits this because they have a late night happy hour as well from 9:30 to 11:30.

COUPONING FOR DOLLARS–Don’t forget about VALPAKs, Groupon, Amazon Local and Groupon Deals. Valpak currently has coupons for 20% off lunch at New Delhi Palace, $1 freshly brewed drip coffee at City Espresso. And 10% off lunch and dinner at Pho All Day. Groupon currenly has a coupon for half off at Novihos steakhouse in Bellevue, Peaks Custard and O’Asian Kitchen.

Also, allows you to buy gift certificates for restaurants far below face value. You can spend $10 to get a $25 gift certificate for participating restaurants. There are restrictions, of course, and you have to spend more than $25 but with regular deals on the site, you can often shave a lot off your bill.

You can get a $25 gift certificate to Chutney’s in Bellevue for $10. There’s a minimum purchase of 50, but you’ve saved $15, so it’s 35.00. You can also get a $10 gift certificate for Liebchin Delicatessen for $4. Minimum purchase is $7.50. So, you save between $3.50 and $6.

SPECIAL DEALS AND EVENTS. Dine Around Seattle is in full swing. It’s a program where you can get a three course meal at one of the city’s 50 favorite restaurants for just $30. Two Bellevue restaurants are participating in the program. Cantinetta and Monsoon East. If you want to save even more, you can get a 3-course lunch for $15. Monsoon East does offer lunch. That runs from Nov. 3 through 27th Sunday through Thursday. There’s also Seattle Restaurant Week with even more restaurants featuring three course meals for $28 and lunches for $15.

LET’S TALK CHOCOLATE. Seattle Chocolates factory store is located at 1180 Andover Park West and is open Monday through Friday from 10 am to 5 pm. Brown and Haley has outlets in Fife and Tacoma. You don’t have to take a tour of Theo’s to get samples. Chocolopolis has chocolate sampling during its weekly happy hour on Thursdays from 5 to 9 pm.

AAA DISCOUNTS. While you might not be able to cover the cost of AAA membership with all of the money you save with discounts, you can get pretty close if you combine it with the amount of money you can save on roadside assistance when a crisis occurs. You can find a list of discounts for cardholders in AAA Journey Magazine or go to the discount page on AAA’w website.

KIDS EAT FREE…ALMOST. On Thursdays, kids eat for 99 cents at the Old Country Buffet with the purchase of an adult meal. Not too shabby.

THE PERPETUAL BOOK SALE. There’s no need to wait for a big library book sale to get books thanks to the Corner Bookshop at the Bellevue Library. Operated by the Bellevue Friends of the Library and located inside the library, the store sells used books for around $2. Any book that’s been on the Corner Bookshop’s shelves for more than three months gets a red “X” and is sold for 25 cents. The store is open from 10 am-1 pm Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm Wednesday and Thursday and 1-4 pm Sunday. The Mercer Island Library also has books on sale throughout the year.

If I missed anything, please let me know.

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