The cup that cheers continues to depress us. Since we last tracked prices in 2010, the cost of a cuppa in Udupi style restaurants, across cities, is up by at least 20 percent in the last one year, with prices up by Rs 2 to Rs 7. In these non-AC places, you could wind up paying as much as Rs 25. In local franchise chains like Cafe Coffee Day and Barista, the cheapest brews would be around Rs 60. At the international chains, which source their beans from abroad, your minimum bill would be even higher.
The ever-rising prices have given birth to a new trend, one seen in both the pseudupis and the upmarket chains: Mini cappuccinos. Au Bon Pain has one for Rs 21; Cafe Coffee Day’s version costs Rs 22. They follow in the footsteps of McDonald’s, who first introduced the concept. Even in coffee heartland, Tamil Nadu, mini-kapis, served in tumblers half the regular size, are getting popular. Perhaps inspired by Mumbai’s roadside vendors and their ‘cutting’ chais?
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(This story appears in the 17 August, 2012 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)