There is a Pret A Manger opening tomorrow right across the way from the woman I buy my coffee from. She said to me this morning that she’s terrified that the new restaurant is going to steal all of her business. I reassured her that I would keep buying my coffee from her, but what about everyone else?
Pret is a chain that sells organic and fair trade coffee for about $1 more than my woman does, as well as healthier options for breakfast foods. I like that their options are healthy, fair trade, and organic, but I like the small business aspect of my coffee woman.
Pret will now have two locations on Lexington Ave within two blocks, and their presence in the city is starting to resemble that of Starbucks. Things are in constant flux here, but the bummer is that small businesses are disappearing and chains are taking over.
When I moved here a lot of food business seemed unique and small-scale, but now after 10 years the city is starting to feel like the suburbs, with big chains popping up everywhere.
I sound like a crazy woman pining for the old days, but I believe variety is the spice of life, and variety in NYC is becoming a choice between Panera, Pret, and Popeye’s. I miss the little guys.