Eating free on your birthday

Fat City turns one year old next week. Birthdays are always a fun time, and if you play your cards right, they can be a perfect opportunity to get free stuff from restaurants.

The blog Rambling Hussies has put together a list of metro-area chains that honor birthday boys and girls. For lunch, you could have a free sandwich from Planet Sub or a free burger from Red Robin. At dinner, Zarda Barbecue will give you free ribs, while The Bristol and its sister Houlihan’s both offer free entrees. For dessert, you have your choice between Cold Stone Creamery and Baskin-Robbins — both chains offer free ice cream.

The catch is, you often have to sign up for a restaurant’s e-mail list or join its club or register in some other way. Registration forms generally ask for your birthdate, and more often than not restaurants will mail you a coupon for a free item on your big day. The other downside is that using a birthday coupon alerts the staff it’s your birthday at that point, pretty much any plan for a low-key celebration is out the window. Yes, you’ll probably get a free dessert, but it’s at the expense of every other diner in the restaurant knowing it’s your special day.

Garozzo’s — which offers free chicken spiedini on birthdays — doesn’t make you register, but it does ask for your ID. An even more exhaustive list is available at You could easily live to 100 and never have to pay for a meal on your birthday again.

Image via Flickr: Jessica N. Diamond

Categories: Dining, Food & Drink