by Vanessa Brazeau

For Breakfast

Bon’s Off Broadway
2451 Nanaimo Street 
When I started at UBC 6 years ago my tuition was $4,100.00 and breakfast at Bon’s was $2.95. This year’s tuition was $5,300.00 and breakfast at Bon’s is still $2.95. The Salt and Pepper Cowboy continues to win both duels with inflation and the key to my hungover heart. 

For a Slice

Uncle Fatih’s Pizza
1685 E Broadway (Other Locations: 1187 Denman and 2778 W Broadway) 
4 Bucks for two slices and a can of pop – Uncle Fatih’s Pizza on Commerical and Broadway brings gourmet to Pizza-by-the-Slice while still satisfying the needs only sketchy pizza joints can. Uncle Fatih’s is only Slicery I have ordered a full pizza from, and also the only one I’d eat from sober. The slices are loaded with toppings, and high turn over means they’re always fresh. The signature sesame seed crust makes a lovely finale (or start, if thats what your into) to a heavenly experience.

On the Go… 

Ba Le Deli and Bakery 
701 Kingsway
This hidden gem is a great quick stop for an on-the-go lunch. At an average price of $3.50, these Vietnamese sandwiches pay for themselves in the meat alone. They come in a vast selection- grilled pork, shredded chicken, tofu, and combination specials all flavored in a unique spicy marinade perfectly tamed with a tangy mayo-like dressing. The french influence comes through in the generously sized baguette that is baked in an oven imported from France, giving them a crispy outside, melt-in-your-mouth inside that is complimented with an array of  fresh veggies. 

FYI: I once ate one so fast I spiked my blood sugar and almost fainted. At the time I thought I was dying, and I remember saying to myself ‘at least I’ll die with a delicious sandwich in my stomach’. No joke. They’re really fucking good.

With Drinks

Simply Delicious Galleria and Sushi Lounge

4316 Main Street
Simply Delicious has had rep in the past as a red-light dive that is far from appetizing. Under new ownership, the late night Main Street bar has made an impressive turn around without compromising low prices. The BC sports bar meets Japanese Izykaya offers cheap sushi for the brave, and cooked fusion items to accommodate the not-so-keen. Perhaps the best part about Simply Delicious is that drinks are dirt cheap, from $3  a pint making the galleria a well rounded evening of cheap eats and beverages.

The bill for 6 beers, 2 sushi rolls, Agadashi Tofu, Spinach Gomae and Green Tea Ice Cream, remained under $25 dollars.

For a Date

207 W Hastings Street
While suffragettes and feminist political rebels have given equality and rights to women- modern times have extended this equality to the cheque. It can be awkward and unromantic to have a dinner date on a budget, most restaurants look more like high school cafeterias. Generally we pay for ambience, but this is not the case at Nuba. Classy decor and a trendy vibe make you feel like a New York Socialite while you pay like a student.  

Dishes rarely exceed 10 dollars and the fresh, organic Lebanese inspired fare meets the expectation that the ambience gives. Buying local keeps prices down and the menu transforming- making Nuba perfect for a second or third date as well!


Toshi Sushi
181 E 16th Ave

I have to admit, I’m not that comfortable suggesting cheap places to go for raw fish. (Simply delicious is an exception because they have cheap beer! Have you seen my dignity?) Most of the time sushi is worth the few extra bucks if it means living through the night.

That is why I have based my recommendation on a quality for dollar ratio rather than dirt-cheapness. 

Toshi Sushi (16th Ave just off Main) is a great medium that gives the freshest, melt in your mouth fish without burning away the dollar bills. The word is already out so get there early (they don’t take reservations) and be prepared to have your entire party present our they won’t add you to the wait list. 

For brunch

Nice Cafe
154 E 8th Ave
The all day breakfast alongside the numerous burgers, salads and sandwiches all for under 10 bucks makes the Nice Cafe nice to your wallet. The laid back atmosphere is great for a lazy Sunday Brunch and the variety on the menu caters to everyone whether your feelin’ an early lunch or late breaky – or both.

Value for your Dollar… 

Hawkers Delight
4127 Main Street
$12 bucks got us dinner for two, 5 chicken satays to start followed by two large plates piled with Indonesian/Malaysian cuisine. Veggies and tofu soaked in a flavourful spicy satay sauce and a light teriyaki based noodle dish with chicken, egg, and spinach. The sitting room is a tad cramped and a bit cafeteria like, but if you are looking for a place to catch up with one or two close friends and share a few plates of delicious and filling food.