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Romantic prix-fixe dinner in the $20-30 range?

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I'm looking for a restaurant where my partner and I can celebrate our 5th anniversary. We're both broke grad students, though, so we're looking for something nice but relatively inexpensive. The details:

-We like all cuisines, though I don't find the more heavily-spiced ones very "romantic."
-We'd prefer to go out on a Saturday night, but Sunday would also be acceptable if it's cheaper. We're not averse to eating earlier in the evening.
-I'd really prefer somewhere with street parking (don't want to take public transportation, and would like to not pay $10+ for valet parking unless the dinner is a REALLY good deal).
-We don't plan on having wine or any other drinks, so I don't care if it's BYO or if it has a good wine list or anything else like that.
-We're coming from Hyde Park, which means we'll have a decent drive ahead of us no matter where we go, so geographic location within the Chicago area isn't important.
-Prix fixe isn't necessary, but we would like to be able to get an entire dinner, not just entrées, for $30 or under per person. Prix fixe specials seem like a good way to get an affordable meal at a restaurant that would otherwise be out of our price range.

I'm already considering One Sixty Blue, which is at the upper limit of our price range with a $32 three-course prix fixe. Cafe Too seems like a more affordable option ($24 five-course), but I'm guessing it's not a very romantic atmosphere. We've been to Kendall College many times and love it but would like to try something different.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions!

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one sixtyblue
160 North Loomis, Chicago, IL 60607

Cafe Too
4715 N Sheridan Rd, Chicago, IL 60640

Kendall College Dining Room
900 N. North Branch Street, Chicago, IL 60642

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  1. Sweets & Savories has a fantastic deal for the quality of the food (very high) a three course meal for $29.00. This includes appetizer, entree and dessert off the menu. The restaurant is BYOB and parking is available on the street (west Fullerton). They also have a special on Tuesday nights that includes half off the entire menu. The last ttime I was there I had the lobster risotto which is sinfully good and loaded with lots of tender lobster meat. For the price I honestly don't know how they do it!

    Kate

    1. I would HIGHLY recommend Han 202 in Bridgeport. Easy street parking, $20 5 course meal, and the food is outstanding. Nice atmosphere - certainly you could get dressed up but you wouldn't be out of place in jeans. My husband and I went a few months ago and loved it. It is Asian-influenced, but you can certainly avoid the more heavily spiced items. If you like calamari, get the salt and pepper calamari as your app - you will not be disappointed. For salads, the lemongrass beef salad is amazing.

      1 Reply
      1. re: thelegalfoodie

        Second Han 202. As the broke parent of a broke college student, this is where we have gone lately for her birthday, my birthday and her boyfriend's "off to grad school" dinner.

        http://www.han202restaurant.com/cours...

      2. The current edition of Chicago Magazine has an article "30 under 30," identifying 30 restaurants where you can get a 3 course meal (not including tax & alcohol). Many are only available Sun - Thurs., but take a look.

        1. Thanks for the suggestions, everyone! After consulting Chicago magazine as per masha's recommendation, my partner and I wound up going with thelegalfoodie's suggestion and we went to Han 202. It was delicious, filling, and above all cheap! I'll keep Sweets and Savories in mind for a time when I'm a little more flush with cash, because it looks fantastic.