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They don’t call it “The Five Spot” for nothing — because this otherwise reasonably priced Myrtle Avenue soul-food restaurant is now charging $5 for a soda.
Yes, $5 for a large Sprite, Coke or root beer — the same price as about a gallon and a half of gas; two and a half shares of Bear Stearns or a Barnes and Noble classic copy of “Macbeth.”
That’s also 50 cents more than a Coke will cost you at The River Café, one of the most-expensive restaurants in Brooklyn.
So was Kate Myers, who dined with her husband and 5-year-old son at the Five Spot on Sunday, March 9.
The family walked into the restaurant, at Washington Avenue, at about 3:30 pm, and ordered two notably reasonably priced entrees: the Clinton Hill Crispy Chicken Fingers ($6.90), and the Five Spot Fish N Chips ($7.95).
And they ordered three drinks: one vodka tonic ($8), one Brooklyn Lager ($8), and a Sprite for little Joe ($5).
Lest you think the high price for soft drinks stems from a bottomless mug, think again. There are no refills — which Myers discovered when she ordered her son a second soda.
“The bill came and we saw there were $10 worth of Sprites,” said Myers, still in disbelief. “If it had been $3, I would have thought it was too much. I travel a lot for my job, and for room service, I don’t pay ever $5.”
Malik Armstead, the owner of Five Spot, does have an explanation — of sorts — for the price he charges for a soda.
“Our drinks are, like, 25 ounces,” said Armstead. “But most places give people only an eight-, 12-, or 16-ounce glass.”
Indeed, two Brooklyn Paper reporters confirmed that the $5 sodas were served in larger-than-normal steins, but closer inspection revealed that said glasses were filled with quite a bit of ice and had a false bottom.
Besides, Myers claims that her son’s sodas were served in tumbler glasses — though the waittress might have merely made a mistake or put the drink in a more child-friendly glass for little Joe.
After all, said Armstead, jumbo-size is part of the restaurant’s theme.
“A lot of times you go out, and you pay more for less,” he said. “When you walk out of here, you’re filled.
“Generally, our food prices are extremely competitive,” he added
In fact, they are, which is what makes this $5 soda stuff all the more puzzling (not to mention the automatic 20-percent gratuity tacked onto our check.
“It just seems bizarre,” said Emily Livadary, a Fort Greene resident who works in advertising, but has never been to the restaurant. “It seems like it must be a joke or something. You could buy an entire meal for $5.”
©2008 Community Newspaper Group
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