Summertime and the dining is cheaper


Discount dining deals abound during the summer in Delray Beach and surrounding town

Dining out in South Florida can easily lighten your wallet, assuming you’re not the type for early bird or sunset dinners.

But it doesn’t have to, especially during the dog days of summer when restaurateurs are grateful for any offseason business, Many offer a wide range of deals and coupons to bring you through their doors.

That’s the case, from Aug. 1 to Aug 7, when more than 30 restaurants on or near Atlantic Avenue in downtown Delray Beach will be participating in the third annual Dine Out Downtown Delray Restaurant Week. Participating restaurants, representing a wide range, from casual  snacks to fine dining experiences, offer three-course lunches for $20 and under, and three-courses for $40 and under, excluding tax and tip. Some eateries plan special events and food classes. The week is designed to showcase the  summertime dining scene while raising awareness for the “Not One Hungry Homeless Student Delray Beach” initiative.

Among the restaurants participating in the Downtown Delray promotion are Avant, Banyan, Beg for More Izakaya, Buddha Sky Bar, Brule Bistro, Caffe Luna Rosa, Che!, Dada, Death or Glory, Deck 84, 50 Ocean, The Grove, Lemongrass Asian Bistro, Le Sorelle, Mellow Mushroom, Papa’s Tapas, Prime Tuscany Grill, Ramen Lab Eatery, Salt 7, Vic & Angelo’s and Windy City Pizza.

The event’s promoters are encouraging diners to reserve directly through the participating restaurants or through OpenTable.  The list of special events —there are quite few—can be found on the downtown web page.

Can’t make it during this promotional week, you still can find discounted dining at some of the area’s finer restaurants as well as some of its lesser lights utilizing such online purveyors of discounted dining certificates as,, and Often, they provide a cheaper way to explore new eateries, ones you might not have considered sans the discount. Also, LocalDines recently introduced a monthly subscription dining card that, so far, is good at Tucci’s in Boca Raton; Griddle Girlz in Boynton Beach and Papas Tapas in Delray Beach, among others.’s Delray offerings

Groupon’s dining deals in Delray and beyond

Local Dines deals in Delray Beach’s local offers












These online dining deals may include complete fixed-price dinners at a fraction of the regular menu cost or discounts equivalent to the price of an entrée, or lesser reductions. You pay up front—at least partially— for the privilege of discounted dining. Pay $25 for $50 worth of food.

But beware. There’s plenty of fine print to be read.

There are time limits on these dining-certificate deals, generally 90 days from the date of purchase, sometimes longer. If you don’t use your discounted dining certificate before it expires you can’t get your money back. You will, however, get a discount equivalent to the amount you paid in advance.  Lately, I’ve noticed, Groupon has been offering time extensions and expired certificates, but don’t count on it continuing.

And generally, restaurants adds a mandatory 18 percent gratuity. Sometimes, it’s suggested you tip on the pre-discounted amount.

Also, the deals may only be good on weekdays and exclude holidays. Some are limited to lunch.

Moreover, you often can’t buy more than one certificate for the same restaurant within a given time (of course, there’s no rule that says someone else in your household can’t buy a second)  At LocalDines, there are limited number of certificates available each month so if you when its available, you’re out of luck.

Some deals require that you spend a minimum before you get your discount. You may have to run up a tab of say $50, $75, or $100 for two to get the deal. Some discount dining certificates won’t even cover the cost of one entrée at some establishments where entrée prices may top $30.  A recent deal on CharityDine for 50 Ocean, where entrees start at $23, gets you $25 worth of food for $12.50 and requires that you spend $50. That’s easily done, but if you’re only saving $12.50 on a tab that could total moocher if you order apps and/or dessert. Is it really worth the effort.  And you can’t only use one discount per dining party, not matter if you split the check with another couple.

One Groupon deal at Big Al’s Steaks in Delray gives you $20 worth of cheesesteaks, burgers or sandwiches.  Two basic cheesesteaks ordinarily would cost you $20. Sides and drinks, of course, are extra. Other recent offerings included Japango, Doughnut Works, Ocean One Bar & Grille, Basilic Vietnamese, Rotelli and La Poulette., which donates a portion of each discount certificate sale to charity, is also offering a $25 discount on $50 worth of dinner at Jimmy’s Bistro in Delray Beach for just $8. A fillip, a 20 percent gratuity is automatically added.

Wanna dine at Kapow! Noodle Bar in Boca Raton. LocalDines will sell you a certificate for $30 worth of food for $15. There’s an 18 percent mandatory gratuity. Old world French cuisine your style? You can give La Cigale, a favorite of the blue-hair set, a try with a certificate.  For $10 you’ll get food worth $25, if you spend $50. Entrees run about $30 each and up, so a soup-to-nuts dinner for two here will easily set you back $200.

And to be sure, many eateries offer unadvertised discounts. Ke’e Grill in Boca Raton has slashed bottled wine prices in half for the summer, It pays to make a call,

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