I work downtown and while for the most part I try to bring a lunch from home rather than go out to eat, sometimes you have to go and find something. One thing that Victoria has no shortage of is places to eat for lunch. Pretty much any kind of food you have a desire to eat can be found within a ten minute walk of pretty much any corner of downtown. What can be a little harder is to find something to eat that doesn’t cost you a decent amount of money. That said if you are willing to look, you can find a few great places to eat, spend less than 10 dollars and feel full enough to make it through the rest of your day. Keep in mind this is not an exhaustive list, just some of the places that I think are worth going if don’t want to spend a lot.
Known to pretty much everyone in Victoria as “the Italian Deli”, this thirty plus year institution is one the must visit downtown eateries. It is also an amazing feat that the vast majority of the lunch offerings at the Italian Deli also come in at under ten dollars. If you want to eat something that will maybe fill you up for the whole day and not just lunch, have their amazing Meatball Panino. This monster sandwich comes in at just $7.25. One thing to think about if you are planning on visiting here for lunch is that because it is so good, the line-ups are long, but worth it. Try arriving before the noon rush or closer to 1pm. The Italian Deli is on Blanshard Street between Yates and View.
La Taqueria has been open for a couple of years now on Fort Street and I have been there quite a few times; one thing I have never felt is disappointed for having gone. This is in my opinion one of the best taco shops in town by a lot. If you want to stay under the ten dollar mark you may not feel as inflated as you do after the Meatball Panino, yet you can still get a nice amount of food. Tacos are three dollars each and three of them is a nice sized quick lunch, though if you go vegetarian you can get four for ten dollars. Much like the Italian Deli, there is often a line out the door here as well, but it moves quickly. Also if you want something sweet, I have heard good things about the churros with cajeta, but I haven’t had the chance to try them so you should and let me know!
This family run gem is on Yates just east of the Odeon Theatre. This is not your hipster Superbaba kebab place. Efes is a simple, but delicious place to eat and their prices are beyond believable. If you get a fully loaded shish kebab or doner kebab you will maybe max out at about $8.50, though I have had great meals here for less than that. The family that runs it are very kind and helpful and the food is amazing. Like I said if you want a polished place and your food served with irony, hit up the place around the corner. If you want a meal prepared with care that also tastes great make sure to check out Efes. This place is also quick so if you don’t have a lot of time there is generally not much of a wait.
I know another Italian place, this relatively new bakery at the south end of Fan Tan Alley has been an instant hit. My friend Kenny said it had to make the list due to its amazing sandwiches that start at just $6.25 which seems unbelievably cheap given their substantial size. Like the Italian Deli this place has a line out the door at noon with all the office workers nearby. La Tana also has a side business selling fresh pasta which looks amazing and I know I will be trying it soon! If you have had it let me know what I have been missing in the comments below.
Ox King has made it into my blog before, first showing up in my post on ramen. It makes a special mention here because unlike all of the other places in my ramen post, you can eat pretty much every dish on the menu for less than 10 dollars. Getting one of the slurplishious bowls of noodles and soup is an awesome lunch and getting it for so little is just an added bonus. Ox King is located just to the east of the Victoria Public Market along the carriageway. It is tight quarters in there, but with how fast your food comes you will hardly notice. I highly recommend this little lunch place. Make sure to sit at the counter so you can watch all the action as your food is prepared!
This is just a short list of places to eat, I have surely missed your top cheap eat in Victoria. Where is it? What is the best thing? Let us all know down in the comments!