Earlier this month, Bon Appetit picked up a story on DipJar, a device being tested at the Times Square location of Oren’s Daily Roast (Broadway between 40th+41st), that allows customers to swipe their credit card to quickly leave a tip. Eater NY quickly followed up. Although the ML team was somewhat perplexed by the newsworthiness of this story, when we dropped by yesterday, yet another reporter was there with photography crew in tow. According to the DipJar website, the inventor’s justification for producing such a device is the drop in tips baristas experienced after the rise in having “plastic only” and an excuse for leaving nothing in the tip jar. The device is being tested out in just a handful of locations (apparently those without a tip line on their credit card receipts) and each business sets the tip amount. Oren’s set amount is $1. According to DipJar, when fully up and running, the service will take a small fee for tips processed at no cost to retailers, while collecting a significant tip money for employees that would otherwise not exist. As Bon Appetit points out, the tips will also be on the books, so employees who underreport tips to get by might be doubly hit.
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Got a bunch of coffee news for those of you looking for a morning pick me up… Oren’s has expanded to Times Square! They recently opened a new store on Broadway (between 40th+41st) which they’re calling their “flagship” (whatever that means!) Whatever it’s called I bet anyone cash money that they’ll be running out of frozen yogurt come summer-time.
But that’s not the only coffee news, Joe the Art of Coffee in Grand Central is trying to help out their extreme line situation with a coffee cart!
If you are a big fan of bakeries, Midtown would probably not be your first choice of places to be stuck 40 hours a week. Lower East Side, East Village, Soho, hell, anywhere would probably be better than here. (Though we do have 28 locations of Crumbs!) But don’t curl up into a sugar deprived ball just yet. Some of the best non-Midtown bakeries have items shipped to various shops in Midtown… and who better to uncover the best ones than our contributor, and baked goods expert, Kathy YL Chan (from A Passion for Food.) Here is her list of favorites, along with the location in Midtown you can find them. (Note: some places have multiple locations with a rotating list of sweets. You won’t be guaranteed to find each of these items at all locations on all days… but it’s still a good guide to get you started.)
Two Little Red Hens
- Actual Bakery Location: 1652 2nd Ave (btw. 85+86th), UES
- Favorite Item: Brooklyn Blackout Cake
This dark and luscious number never fails to leave me intoxicated in a sugar coma, post-consumption. Regardless, I return to it over and over again. And no, there are never regrets. Tiers of chocolate cake layered with chocolate pudding, finished off with frosting and a smattering of cake crumbs. Too sweet? Of course! But in just the right ways that you would expect and want. Where to get it in Midtown: Dean & Deluca
Sage General Store
- Actual Bakery Location: 24-20 Jackson Ave., Long Island City
- Favorite item: Carrot Cake Cupcake
The girls over at Lunch Studio have already spilled wonders on this oversized cupcake creation. Carrot cake and a smother of whipped cream cheese frosting. Simple and classic, no surprises here, just pleasure all around. Where to get it in Midtown: Dean & Deluca