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Nov 28, 2009 09:50 AM

Best Value Dining in Calgary

What are peoples suggestions for value dining in Calgary. For the days you cannot afford fine dining and want to have a decent meal at a sit down restaurant. Places you leave from thinking the price was almost to good to be true. Any part of the city is okay, more centralized would be preferred. Please include any type of cuisine.

Looking forward to hearing everyones suggestions.

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  1. For a simple meal, I like to go to Banzai -- we normally go to the Southland Crossing one as it's convenient for us. Good udon, rice bowls and pretty decent sushi. They tend to hire Japanese students who don't know a lot of english, but I've never had a problem. There is also a location downtown:

    The beef rice bowl is probably our least favorite.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sweeterpea

      Thanks. That fits the bill, I'll have to give it a shot!

    2. Niko's in Kensington fits the bill, great Italian food at exceptionally good prices. I'm always happy when I leave knowing I got exceptional value and a tremendous meal.

      1. I like Jonas' for Hungarian food, it's $15 for two HUGE pieces of schitzel with lemon wedges and potato salad. It used to be $11 when I first started going there but it's still a really good deal, it's family-run and very friendly.

        For really cheap tasty meals you can't beat pho, but my SO doesn't care for it so I don't get to have it very often :(

        8 Replies
        1. re: hsk

          I've never tried Jonas', I've been wanting to. Seems I am always thinking of them on Monday.
          They are closed on Monday. Too bad for me!

          1. re: Craig L

            Okay, tried Jonas' a couple of nights ago. Good value I would say, lots of food. Rather boring and bland though, expected more. We had the schnitzel and the chicken papricash (sp?). Started with the goulash and the chicken soup. Basically nobody else in the restaurant. Really not that impressed, certainly would not rush back.

          2. re: hsk

            Jonas' food is good, but I would HARDLY call it 'value dining.' It used to be a good value, but their prices have increased by at least 50% in the last 3 or 4 years :(

            I mean, The Hungarian Cookbook by Susan Derecskey is only $13, and the recipes there are just as good as anything i've had at Jonas'. :P

            1. re: nonlinear

              You sound like my mother - "I could have made it myself for 0.25x what it's costing here". As I say to her: you'll never get a meal in a restaurant for the price of groceries, they have to pay the rent, wages, utilites, property/business taxes etc. from what they charge. Also (with mom) - I'm paying so it's not actually costing you anything.

              I think mid/high teens for a good, decent-sized entree is value dining.

              1. re: hsk

                i'm sorry, but this is a VALUE dining thread, is it not?

                EDIT: oh OK, after reading hsk's comment again, it's apparent we have different ideas about 'value.' i guess i'll never get over being spoiled by the american slave labour kitchen staff. right, john?

                  1. re: nonlinear

                    Here's one for you: bacon-wrapped filet and ribs for $12.95 at Trio's, I got a card in the mail and I had to check it out. The filet was somewhat less than 4 oz. and the veg was rubbery but the garlic toast and ribs were great.

                    For the price I thought it was good.

                  2. re: hsk

                    I would agree that mid to high teens is value dining... the only way you're going to get cheaper is fast food. Mind you, some of the things that kind of qualify as fast food, like the take-away Pho I had in the core, are excellent.

              2. What about that place in Bowness, the Wiener Schnitzel House? I haven't tried it yet, but have heard people rave.

                Also at the Chinese Bakeries you can easily have a big lunch for under 5 bucks with a drink and a couple of filled buns.

                2 Replies
                1. re: sweeterpea

                  That Wiener Schnitzel place RULES! Again, it's NOT value dining (entrees in the high-teens), but the food is great and worth the price IMO. You can get fries or salad. I always get the salad, which is awesome euro-style with various fresh veggies and NO LETTUCE :P

                  1. re: nonlinear

                    Thanks, I'll make it a point to try it soon. Also, for dessert, some cream horns from Sweet Home Bakery down the street! (do not get anything else, just the cream horns)

                2. Happy Valley restaurant in Chinatown, ask for the "other" menu and order the chow fun with beef and black bean sauce.