The birth of an idea

It was 2008, and the economy of our small family owned business was so tough that we were beginning to use soap and shampoo from hotel stays to avoid spending extra money at the grocery store. Paper towels were replaced with old-fashioned hand towels in the kitchen. The usually overstocked refrigerator and kitchen pantry were so empty that family members practically had coronaries when they searched for the usual plentiful snacks during visits.

We even closed our company office and moved a few desks and computers home for work. This is when we began to appreciate the tremendous savings in eating at home for every meal.  What simplicity to cook a nice breakfast before we walked down the hall to work! Sandwiches, or leftovers from the previous evening, made lunches easy. Then came dinner. I could stop my regular work and step back into the kitchen to whip up a nice little meal for the two of us in the late afternoon. After about three weeks of implementing our money saving meal plan, I began to long for our casual dinners out. The dishes piling in the sink were piled higher. The used pots and pans on the stove hovered a little longer.

One evening, Terry and I were driving home from church and decided to stop at a nearly restaurant to see what we could buy to eat and share for a total of $10. It was time to be pampered. Really. No cooking to do. No dishes to wash. The opportunity to eat someone else’s cooking. Ahhh.

We were surprised to discover that a delicious side salad and a cup of soup totaled less than $5 per person! The portions were actually generous and the quality was great (or it seemed so to our deprived palates). Though we ordered only water to drink, we received a huge bonus with the scrumptious loaf of complimentary bread served with our meal. The nice waiter even offered a second loaf of bread when he noticed how quickly we polished off the first one. By the time we paid for the taxes and tip, we had spent just over $11. That was such a positive experience that we decided to make a game of finding the best meals in town for $5 or less. The rules of our game were similar to the ones you’ll find on the website.

That was such a positive experience that we decided to make a game of finding the best meals in town for $5 or less. The rules of our game were similar to the ones you’ll find on the website. Most importantly, we knew there would be no challenge to find fast food in that price range, so rule #1 was the meal had to be discovered at a restaurant which provided dining in with a wait staff.

Thus was born the $5Dining concept. Needless to say, since you’re viewing our website, you know the idea has grown into something larger than we initially anticipated. We’d love to say we tried all of the restaurants personally, but there isn’t enough time nor the budget for eating out every meal.

So, we hope you have a great time discovering delicious $5 (and $10) bargains at restaurants you may have never tried before. Just log onto our website www.5dollardining.com to begin the adventure. Afterward, we invite you to comment on your experiences as you blaze your $5 trail searching for the best restaurants in town with $5Dining!!

Happy Dining!

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