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How much should one expect to pay for fresh squeezed juice at a Midtown NYC hotel?

ipsedixit Jan 12, 2014 10:54 AM

Not a trick question. Just really curious.

I normally don't drink juice, but when perusing a breakfast menu will often look to see (1) what is offered and (2) how much it costs -- just out of pure Chowhound Schadenfreude, I suppose.

Based on my very unscientific survey, the results thus far until now have been the following:

Clement (The Peninsula): $9.50
Ai Fiori (Langham Place): $7
Asiate (The Mandarin Oriental): $9
The Garden (Four Seasons): $8

So just based on that, I've always just sort of considered fresh squeezed juice at a Midtown hotel to be about the price of a burger and fries at Shake Shack, give or take a dollar or two.

Until today. Did you know that at the King Cole Bar inside the St. Regis you can have the privilege of paying $15 (before tax/tip) for a glass of fresh squeezed Granny Smith Apple Juice? It does come with ginger and mint at no additional cost, however.

That's more than a Margherita pizza at Kesté.

At $15, I just had to try it. And, you know what? It's mighty fine. Might be the best thing I've drank (liquor included) at a restaurant I've had *this* year so far.


  1. a
    AubWah Jan 12, 2014 10:57 AM

    Lesson of the story? Don't order fresh squeezed juice at a Midtown hotel

    5 Replies
    1. re: AubWah
      Phil Ogelos Jan 12, 2014 11:13 AM

      (Alternative) Lesson of the story: If you have to ask, you can't afford it.

      (I suspect this isn't ipse's problem, but when it comes to travellers consuming in hotels -or train stations, or airports- everyone knows it's a seller's market.)

      1. re: Phil Ogelos
        AubWah Jan 12, 2014 11:26 AM

        Great fairly priced sandwiches at the train station in Rome

        1. re: AubWah
          Phil Ogelos Jan 12, 2014 11:27 AM

          Sono pronto!

          1. re: Phil Ogelos
            AubWah Jan 12, 2014 11:49 AM

            Compare biglietti!

      2. re: AubWah
        grampart Jan 14, 2014 02:15 PM

        Hell, I don't even order it at a Waffle House!

      3. c
        cheesecake17 Jan 12, 2014 11:50 AM

        Before i even read your post I thought to myself $10/glass

        3 Replies
        1. re: cheesecake17
          coll Jan 12, 2014 11:52 AM

          That's at least what they charge in the Hamptons too, now I know where they get the nerve.

          1. re: coll
            cheesecake17 Jan 12, 2014 11:54 AM

            Husband takes clients for breakfast at a lot of these hotels and business breakfast-y restaurants. I laugh because a breakfast of pancakes and eggs sometimes turns out to be as much as a steak dinner! Once the coffees, lattes, juices, side dishes add up....it's a pretty penny

            1. re: cheesecake17
              coll Jan 12, 2014 11:55 AM

              Like renting a private room!

              I had a customer who used to regularly call and complain that the oranges weren't as juicy as usual and he wanted a big credit on each case. So it's not like they're taking a chance on fresh, or anything.

        2. Veggo Jan 12, 2014 12:15 PM

          Interesting. Maybe I should get a snarly rottweiler and chain it to my orange tree.

          1. b
            barberinibee Jan 12, 2014 01:19 PM

            I would expect to pay 5 euros for fresh squeezed orange juice at a bar in Italy -- most especially a bar with a great history or a great view or in a prime tourist area. What would be odd is not the cost but the idea of having it at breakfast.

            Curiously, in America, sometimes hotel room service for individual breakfast items is cheaper than at the hotel restaurant or gaining entry to the breakfast buffet that will be charged to your hotel bill.

            I think if you opt for a hotel breakfast as part of your bill you are essentially paying for the excess food they throw away and the excess food other people steal to make a picnic lunch for later in the day.

            This is not peculiar to NYC, by the way. I recently had a lot of difficulty at a London hotel trying to buy just a cup of fresh fruit and a yoghurt for breakfast. I was prepared to pay a stiff markup but they wanted to charge me something along the lines 15 GBP for the "buffet breakfast."

            Just as aside, I'd rather pay $7 for fresh squeezed orange juice anywhere than a burger at the Shake Shack. Ditto kicking back Apple Juice at the St Regis vs. pizza at Keste (but I am not a fan of Neapolitan style pizza, even in Napoli). Glad you enjoyed it.

            6 Replies
            1. re: barberinibee
              MVNYC Jan 12, 2014 02:02 PM

              Silly Americans drinking orange juice at breakfast

              1. re: MVNYC
                barberinibee Jan 12, 2014 05:46 PM

                Italian coffee is so much stronger than American coffee it is next to impossible to drink both for breakfast and not feel ill, and most people in Italy want coffee in the morning. Fruit juices are preferred in the mid afternoon as a pick me up. If you sit down in a bar/caffe and have the juice fresh squeezed for you than you can expect to pay something around the equivalent of $7 for it.

                I think Florida orange juice was marketed to Americans in places where oranges don't grow as some kind of super health elixir for breakfast, when it certainly is not, especially when it is now served to in water tumblers instead of juice glasses.

                1. re: barberinibee
                  MVNYC Jan 13, 2014 08:40 AM

                  "What would be odd is not the cost but the idea of having it at breakfast."

                  You're from America, why would you find it odd?

                  1. re: MVNYC
                    linguafood Jan 15, 2014 11:10 AM

                    Living in Bella Italia obviously gives one a much superior perspective.

                    1. re: linguafood
                      grampart Jan 15, 2014 11:37 AM

                      I'd say paying $15 for a glass of juice or $32 for a serving of French toast obviously gives one a much superior perspective.

                2. re: MVNYC
                  Phil Ogelos Jan 13, 2014 07:29 AM

                  "Silly Americans drinking orange juice at breakfast"
                  ... as opposed to šljivovica?
                  Well, all right then!

              2. Ttrockwood Jan 12, 2014 01:40 PM

                Looks like the marriot marquis has orange juice for a mere $6/glass- not fresh squeezed so i'm guessing its a sysco special of sorts.
                (And who pays $6 for a grapefruit?? Or an espresso?)


                1 Reply
                1. re: Ttrockwood
                  kevin Jan 12, 2014 02:14 PM

                  $7.50 minimum.

                2. l
                  lemons Jan 12, 2014 05:50 PM

                  Insult to injury: most of the time, the so-called "fresh squeezed" isn't, it's just not ever been frozen. If you've ever tasted orange juice just after it was squeezed and then let it stand, oh, 30 minutes, say, or an hour, you'll see how fast it goes downhill. And then there's the question of putting entire oranges into a press rather than just reaming out the flesh....

                  That wonderful machine (Spanish? Italian?) that takes oranges, cuts them in half, juices them and pitches the juiced-out halves while the juice comes out a spigot is a wonderful Rube Goldbergian gizmo that I love to watch. We should have a zillion of them. [Okay. End of rant.]

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: lemons
                    barberinibee Jan 12, 2014 05:54 PM

                    Invented by a Spaniard.


                  2. e
                    eastofthemississippi Jan 14, 2014 01:44 PM

                    On a per glass basis Norma's in the Parker does unlimited fresh squeezed juice. Ideal for when you are thirsty / hung over.

                    19 Replies
                    1. re: eastofthemississippi
                      Veggo Jan 14, 2014 02:08 PM

                      Ooh, with a bottle of bubbly, you're off to the mimosa races!

                      1. re: eastofthemississippi
                        kevin Jan 14, 2014 02:12 PM

                        Isn't Norma's the home of the $27 French toast ????????


                        1. re: kevin
                          Ttrockwood Jan 14, 2014 08:43 PM

                          Nope. It's $32. (Foie gras brioche french toast) which makes the $11 grapefruit look cheap....

                          1. re: Ttrockwood
                            kevin Jan 14, 2014 09:07 PM

                            That means I haven't been there in too long.

                            1. re: Ttrockwood
                              cheesecake17 Jan 15, 2014 09:53 AM

                              Husband goes here often with clients. He says its $$$$$ but at least the food is good

                              1. re: cheesecake17
                                Ttrockwood Jan 15, 2014 04:36 PM

                                I'd go on an expense accnt too!

                                1. re: Ttrockwood
                                  cheesecake17 Jan 16, 2014 09:25 AM

                                  Yeah...so would I if given the chance!

                              2. re: Ttrockwood
                                ellenost Jan 15, 2014 09:58 AM

                                How is the foie gras brioche french toast? My office is now a block away from Norma's, and if it's really good, I'll definitely have to try it.

                                1. re: ellenost
                                  cheesecake17 Jan 15, 2014 11:39 AM

                                  Can't answer that.
                                  He only eats the vegetarian items. But they have some type of waffle item that he raves about.

                                  He said its a good place for corporate cards, but he'd never pay to go there

                                  1. re: ellenost
                                    Ttrockwood Jan 15, 2014 04:42 PM

                                    I've never had the foie gras french toast myself- a friend of a friend ordered it and was thrilled- the portions are kind of huge there so you may even get two meals out of it....

                                    1. re: ellenost
                                      eastofthemississippi Jan 15, 2014 05:34 PM

                                      It is incredible. Got into it staying at the Parker for work but when I had a place in midtown I would go there on weekends on my own dime. Ideal hung over but I promised someone we'd get brunch place. Line is long but they text you. And you probably don't need to eat all day after that.

                                      Also, I'm OK with the pricing because it is pretty much in line with the rest of the place. What I find absurd is hotels in Minneapolis charging $25 for a grapefruit half. My friend has a theory they did some thinking, figured the anorexic businesswomen had a $25 breakfast expense limit and would not order anything else.

                                      1. re: eastofthemississippi
                                        ellenost Jan 15, 2014 06:02 PM

                                        Thanks to both of you.

                                        1. re: ellenost
                                          ipsedixit Jan 15, 2014 06:26 PM

                                          My colleague who likes to stay at the Parker Meridian tells me that they do a great corned beef hash.

                                          1. re: ipsedixit
                                            ellenost Jan 15, 2014 07:21 PM


                                2. re: eastofthemississippi
                                  Big Bad Voodoo Lou Jan 15, 2014 11:57 AM

                                  I went to Norma's once, a decently-dressed (but young) tourist from Florida with my decently-dressed wife. When I ordered the orange juice, the super-snooty waiter asked me if I was sure, because it cost $10 or $12 or however much it was.

                                  1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou
                                    kevin Jan 15, 2014 12:01 PM

                                    How many years ago was that OJ experience ????

                                    1. re: kevin
                                      Big Bad Voodoo Lou Jan 21, 2014 08:27 AM

                                      That would've been around 2008 or '09. I don't remember the exact price, but I was shocked that he second-guessed me.

                                      And I wear a shirt, tie, and slacks all the time now, even on weekends and definitely when I travel on vacation.

                                    2. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou
                                      coll Jan 15, 2014 01:33 PM

                                      You should have asked, are you sure you work for tips?

                                      1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou
                                        Monica Jan 16, 2014 09:34 AM

                                        you weren't decently dressed?

                                    3. h
                                      hazelhurst Jan 14, 2014 02:20 PM

                                      I remember once, about 15 years ago, I was in Midtown and absolutely parched and needed to meet someone at the Waldorf so I really had no option but to slug something there. I knew it wouldn't be cheap. I had a Coke and an ice water. I think it was $7.50 then (but I refills on that excellent Manhattan water). It reminded me of the story about Bobby Jones in his capacity as attorney (for Coca-Cola) staying at the Waldorf on the 1960s and he and an associate ordered Coke. It was something like $3 even then. His associate jokes that for what they (or the client) were paying, they could have a couple of cases of the stuff in Atlanta. Jones told his friend that only NOW did he realize the actual value of the product.

                                      It was worth the $7.50 then. But I don't think I'd pay King Cole $15 for a coke. Apple juice maybe---if the expense account holds up/

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: hazelhurst
                                        Veggo Jan 14, 2014 02:24 PM

                                        Nice story. R.I.P. Bobby Jones, a gentleman of his century.

                                      2. arashall Jan 15, 2014 05:59 AM

                                        This might be a little mean, but I had to mention that the company cafe, downstairs in my building, does a 12 ounce fresh squeezed OJ for $2.29. Made us cranky when they raised the price to more than two bucks. The cafe is operated by one of the major vendors that does stadiums, and such. Of course, it's just a plastic cup with a plastic lid, sitting in a bed of ice, so maybe it's the presentation that makes the difference :-)

                                        1. MVNYC Jan 15, 2014 10:54 AM

                                          Honestly fresh squeezed orange juice along with table side guacamole and brunch are the few things I will never get in a restaurant. I know I'm getting blatantly ripped off. Especially $16 guacamole.

                                          1. Veggo Jan 15, 2014 04:44 PM

                                            Bless Mexico. A 14 oz cup of fresh Valencia, squozen before your eyes by the 5th Ave juice man in PDC, is 10 pesos, or 89 cents. He starts each day at 6:00 with 2 twenty kilo sacks of oranges, about 90 lbs, he is usually sold out by 9:30. It's part of the magical allure of Mexico.

                                            1. Monica Jan 16, 2014 09:35 AM

                                              I think overcharging for beverages at hotels around World is very common...especially more common in major Asian cities.

                                              1. p
                                                patash Jan 16, 2014 12:57 PM

                                                I remember a year or so ago, we stopped in at the King Cole Bar before a nearby lunch and we each had a Bloody Mary. When the bill came it looked like a bill for lunch and it said 2 Red Snappers. I forgot that's what they call them at The King Cole, so I continued to embarrass myself by telling them we didn't have lunch, just two Bloody Marys. Ooops. It never occurred to me that two Bloody Marys would cost something like $40.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: patash
                                                  kevin Jan 16, 2014 02:10 PM

                                                  That makes sense.

                                                  The going rate for fancy cocktails and even not do fancy can rise above the $20 per barrier these days especially in NYC.

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