Wednesday, April 28, 2010

'Foodie' Sites Offer Unique Deals, Thrills


So many people are getting engaged later in life, which means that when it comes to registering for their weddings, they really don't need anything.

Case in point is Ben and Jennifer Reid, who were frustrated at the registry options during their engagement in 2008. The couple didn't need any additional household products, but they wanted something to celebrate their new union.

After a frustrating few hours at a department store, Jennifer went home and had an epiphany. She and Ben were big-time dining enthusiasts, so they asked all their friends and family to give them gift certificates to their favorite Chicago restaurants.

That's when they decided to launch Foodie Registry, so that other like-minded engaged couples could enjoy months and months and months of what they've coined as Free Dinner Date Night—courtesy of family and friends.

Foodie is a Chicago-based site and iPhone app offering exclusive deals on local restaurants. (Photo: Foodie The App)

They've teamed up with a number of buzz-worthy restaurants, so if a couple played their cards right, they wouldn't have to drop a dime on dinner for at least a year!

Just some of the participating restaurants include the likes of Naha, Crofton on Wells, Gioco, The Drawing Room and Perennial. Gift certificates start at $25.

Another dining-centric site, Foodie The App, can also be used to buy your friends "exclusive" deals to some of the hottest restaurants in town, but you might want to save these for yourself.

You can sign up from their site or iPhone to get sweet offerings on everything from prix-fixe meals to brunch to cocktail parties. Some of the best deals are reservations at restaurants like The Bristol—which never accepts reservations—a coveted window table at Spiaggia, and "design your own three-course" menus at graham elliot, Piccolo Sogno and Takashi.

Then there are the daily deals that sound way too good to be true. "Buy a glass of Dom and get free fried chicken!" at one sixtyblue. The $5 lunch special at Custom House (who needs $5 footlongs?!). Burger and brew at the bar at Province for $10.

This is seriously one of the best-kept secret sites in town. Who knew we could eat like kings and queens every day of the week?!

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