Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts are the minority side of city's coffee shops: Report
The Big Apple's mom and pop coffee shops are giving Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts a run for their java dominance, according to a report.
The Economic Development Corporation found that 52% of the city's coffee and tea shops, or 893 locations, are not part of any major chains -- and the small shops continue to percolate around town.
EDC spokesman Patrick Muncie said New Yorkers and visitors are really drawn to the variety and individuality that the smaller java holes offer.
"It's fair to say the demand for caffeine in the city doesn't seem to be abating any time soon," he said.
EDC compiled the data by analyzing the Department of Health records for restaurants and didn't include delis or restaurants that offer coffee and tea on their menus.
Although studies show that there are 12 1/2 Starbucks for every 100,000 New Yorkers, EDC found that the chain made up for 272 of the 1,700 coffee shops and cafes in the five boroughs.
There are 454 Dunkin' Donuts in the five boroughs, according to the study.
Some New Yorkers said it was more than flavor that took them to their local spots.
Cat Yundaine, 25, of Harlem, said she prefers mom and pop places to get her caffeine fix because of the vibe inside the shops.
"It's all about the atmosphere," she said while enjoying a drink at Think Coffee's 4th Avenue location. "The quality of the people who I meet here is just as good as the coffee."
EDC noted that many of that many of the city's independent coffee shops have seen tremendous success over the years and are branching out rapidly. Think Coffee added four extra locations in Manhattan since opening its first location at Mercer Street in 2006.
Lacy Lancaster, the manager of the 4th Avenue branch, said New Yorkers prefer to stay local when it comes to their beverages and the Gotham coffee shop experience just can't be replicated by any of the big chains.
"Once people have had a try of a cup that they just really like, there's no going back," she said.