Bag of Chips. Price increase.

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Non-financial Questions' started by Bronco Lane, 2 Jan 2019.

  1. dub_nerd

    dub_nerd Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    1,966
    Last edited: 4 Jan 2019
    Have to disagree. Here's two ways to make your own delicious healthier chips.

    1) The long way: Rinse, but don't peel, three or four medium potatoes. Place in a microwave steamer pot and microwave for 6 to 8 minutes. They must be firm, not mushed. Slice into chips with a sharp knife. Spray ten to twenty squirts (2 calories each) from a spray bottle of either rape seed or olive oil, or a mixture of both. (You can do this in a plastic bag and shake them up if you're worried about mess. Olive has a lower burn temp and produces more evenly tanned chips). Spread the chips flat on a silicone mesh and bung 'em in a fan oven for 20-25 minutes at 220 C.

    2) The short way: Rinse, but don't peel, your potatoes. Slice into chips, and place in an air fryer. Spray with ten to twenty squirts of rape seed or olive oil and air fry for 35 minutes. Less than five minutes total prep, and then they look after themselves.

    I won't pretend these are the same as chipper chips. They're different. And once you get over the difference they're nicer. The first time I saw a bag of chipper chips after a couple of years of making my own, it turned my stomach. Oozing with viscous yellow chipper oil and unbearably greasy. Yech! Make your own healthy chips -- you'll never look back.
     
    Last edited: 4 Jan 2019
    qwerty5 likes this.
  2. Bronte

    Bronte Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    13,044
    There is no such thing as a healthy chip. You're fooling nobody with that. I'm sticking with real chips from the chipper for the princely sum of €3.
     
  3. dub_nerd

    dub_nerd Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    1,966
    Potatoes are a good source of Vitamin C and are perfectly fine as part of your daily carbohydrate allowance. Measured amounts of spray oil will let you use a tiny fraction of the calories in the axle grease that passes for cooking oil in a chipper. Spend your €3 elsewhere, and save yer innards from becoming like the fatberg in the London sewers.
     
    newirishman likes this.
  4. Sunny

    Sunny Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    3,432
    Now you just sound like one of those new world hippies! Next you will be telling us to wash it down with organic non-alcoholic beer made from soya beans and kale.......
     
  5. Cervelo

    Cervelo Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    440
    Don't know about the rest of you, but I'm getting a goo on me for fresh cod and chips for dinner tonight :)
    Even with the price increases its still the cheapest takeaway compared to Chinese, Indian or Pizza
     
  6. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    I had a fish and chips last night, and I have to say I agree. Although there's a bit of a question mark over the batter sometimes (it can always be discarded), the other advantage is you know exactly what you're getting: fish and potatoes. You also typically get to see it being made so you can judge the hygiene standards of those preparing it. Not something that can typically be said about other types of take-away……
     
    Leper likes this.
  7. Leper

    Leper Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    786
    The main reason for price increases in Ireland is the rental traders must pay before even serving one customer. Then there's staff to be paid, not to mention purchase of raw material etc.

    In the south of Spain a cup of coffee (con leche+ refill), glass of orange juice, glass of water, one savoury tapa, one small doughnut, bowl of nuts costs €1.50. You can get the same cheaper, but God knows how many fingers fingered the nuts.
     
  8. Tintagel

    Tintagel Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    357
    I was in Spain recently. You could see the pigeons waiting to descend on to the tables where the bowl of nuts were left. A staff member eventually takes the bowl away after the pigeons had a good feed and pours them back in to the main bowl on the counter for distribution to the next customer.
    I never eat the free bowl of anything and even baulk at the basket of bread with my meal.
     
  9. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2019
    Rent is only part of it: pretty much all other costs (notably staff and insurance) have gone up too.

    Comparators with holiday destinations in Southern Europe really don’t apply, much as the armchair pundits would like them to (“we’re being ripped off I tell you!”). You’ll have noticed that must cafés and restaurants there tend to be family owned and run, probably in premises owned by the family for generations. As a result, no rent and it’s doubtful if all the people involved are even getting the local minimum wage (€4.76/hr in Spain, €3.75/hr in Portugal for example). They are getting most of their supplies from similar businesses within 10kms for where they are. In other words, the economics underpinning them are completely different, with very different pricing as a result.

    Speaking of rent, it’s my belief that there is something of a commercial rent bubble happening in Dublin, at least in the retail and hospitality sectors. We’ve been approached twice in the last year by agents for two different companies, each looking for someone to take over the lease on a property which they were vacating due to “business reasons”. Each was looking for a five or six figure sum as a premium for doing this (i.e. “key money”). Now it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to question the logic of paying a premium to someone who has just proved they cannot make a particular location work at the rent they were paying running a very similar business. We passed on both opportunities; one is still on the market months later, one has been changed to a different purpose and I doubt they paid any premium. In other words, real businesses can't sustain the rents and charges being asked for: this will become more and more apparent as more and more 5-year rent reviews will be happening in the next couple of years for places with low rents agreed at the height of the recession. Landlords, who seem to have lost the run of themselves, will no doubt keep looking for large increases until it all comes crashing down again as the businesses that underpin them can't keep up. Just an opinion, of course.....
     
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2019
    RETIRED2017 likes this.
  10. WaterWater

    WaterWater Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    342
    I see my Tall Cappucino in an Insomnia outlet this morning has increased in price to €3.80. They have also stopped selling their special of a scone or pastry plus any sized coffee at a reduced price since January 1st. I believe that the difference between their Tall and medium sized coffee is just more hot water added? Why I have to pay 45c extra for a dash of hot water makes no sense.
    Strolling through Ballsbridge I saw that Roly's were selling theirs at €3.35. Nearby Butlers were selling a medium for €3.35 that included one of their lovely chocolates.
    I will still have a coffee occasionally throughout 2019 but I won't be choosing to sit in a place with scuffed walls, sticky/uncleared tables, rather I will be seeking out value.
     
  11. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    It's additional (hot) milk actually, but I take the point. Larger sizes are very much a ploy by the multinational chains (Starbucks, Coasta, Caffe Nero etc.) and the local chains that ape them (Insomnia, Cafe Sol etc.) to increase their margins even more. It's an indicator of an outlet that cares more about their margins than the quality of the product they serve. How anyone can actually drink a pint of coffee (I assume a "vente" from Starbucks is 20oz?), much less pay nearly €5 for one is beyond me. Places that focus on quality of what they serve will usually only have single sizes, generally on the small side. This isn't stingyness, but it's hard to showcase the quality of coffee if its drowned in an ocean of water or milk (or God fobid, highly sweetened syrups).

    Can I suggest you try one of the smaller independent places? Typically, the coffee does taste somewhat different (actually having flavour instead of bitterness that demands added sugar), but it's also typically no more expensive. Places serving coffee from Roasted Brown, Full Circle, Badger & Dodo, Ground State (all small local specialist roasters) and others will generally all be good. Examples are the Science Galary on Pearse St., Coffee Angel, Bear Market (Blackrock and in the city centre) which are all good. I know Coffee Angel are now selling Lattes at €3.30, others are similar, so it's not as if there's a price premium. Add to that freshly baked goods (try Camerino on Camden St.) and you can't go wrong. There are places like this throughout the country (there's an excellent roaster in Westport whose name escapes me, for example).

    Disclaimer: I've no connection, other than as a farirly frequent retail customer, of any of the places mentioned, other than as a wholesale customer of one of the roasters mentioned.
     
    Firefly and gravitygirl like this.
  12. noproblem

    noproblem Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    1,512
    Have to laugh when all of a sudden there's experts in Ireland shlurping coffee/tea and telling us eejits what's good and what's yuc. A bit like the wine experts who wouldn't know the difference between plonk and pink nun. Now, i'm off for my 1c or 2c cuppa and see what my household staff charge me on top of that for serving me. Rodney and Del boy had it spot on with their one word explanation :)
     
  13. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    I wouldn't presume to tell anyone what to drink: all I did was suggest someone try what's on offer if they're not happy with the price/quality they've been paying. If people like to drink coffee by the pint in Starbucks or use instant at home, good luck to them: everyone to their own. I didn't say what I was suggesting was good or better: "somewhat different" was the phrase I used. As I said, everyone to their own. It is completely pointless to compare costs of what you can do at home and with what you have to pay elsewhere; the cost of the coffee part is a small percentage of the cost it takes to provide it in a café (typically around 10%).
     
  14. Monbretia

    Monbretia Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    1,551
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2019
    My small independent coffee shop which serves very nice coffee has gone from 4.45 for a coffee and scone to 5 euro today :eek: I got a serious fright! Coffee and scone in my town varies from 4 to 5.50, that's outside the chains as I don't frequent them for no particular reason, I know the price everywhere as it's my little treat every now and then, for 5.50 I am getting a very nice scenic location, free parking and a read of a paper with loyalty cards too, only reason I pay that much occasionally.
     
    Last edited: 5 Jan 2019
  15. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    Hopefully, you feel it is still value. Do you happen to know when they last put their prices up? I suspect like a lot of independent places (that are loathe to put up prices, unlike the larger chains which tend to have annual increases) they have rolled in increases due to increased costs that have happened over an extended period with the VAT increase which they had little option other than to pass on. Hence an increase about double what you'd expect from just the VAT increase. If I'm wrong and they're just having a laugh at your expense and you see the owner's new Bentley parked outside in a few months’ time I'd be happy to eat my hat........
     
  16. Monbretia

    Monbretia Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    1,551
    Interestingly I would say at the start of 2018 they were about 4.10 as they were the best value as the 4 euro place doesn't have as nice scones. Then they cut down the size of the scones, that's ok too as I don't want a huge one. Then they went to 4.35 and a month or so ago they went to 4.45 and then today 5 euro. I don't feel it is value at that, the scone is not that great so I will move to my next favourite place which has far nicer scones and was 5, wonder what they have increased to? I may just have to forgo my little treat :(
     
  17. gravitygirl

    gravitygirl Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    432
    Like Water Water I took a stroll through the coffee shops in Ballsbridge myself this week to check some prices post VAT change. I used to get coffe regularly but now it is only occasionally so I am a but out of touch price wise. I noticed that a regular 12oz Americano is pretty much €3-3.25 everywhere now if not more. The minimum wage increase couple with the VAT has probably compounded things. I would completely echo the sentiments of trying different places to get value however - MAIA in Ballsbridge do Silverskin coffee which is great versus Starbucks/Butlers imo (the Butlers in Ballsbridge is a nicely furnished cafe however and a nice place to sit). I don't mind paying a premium if it's a nice location / atmosphere, good wifi, clean, maybe even free papers to browse etc. It can still represent value (a subjective term obviously) if you shop around and consider it the price of the "experience" rather than just caffeine in a paper (or reusable!) cup.

    I see Bear market do 15cent off if you bring your own cup, and also do 10% cashback through their app. Good to see some places finding innovative ways to give customers an option to reduce the price, and personally even without any saving I always try and bring my own cup for environmental reasons.
     
  18. newtothis

    newtothis Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    525
    Last edited: 6 Jan 2019
    That's a lot. The average is €2.84 in the places I surveyed earlier in the week, most around the €2.80 mark.
     
    Last edited: 6 Jan 2019
  19. Gordon Gekko

    Gordon Gekko Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    3,444
    That is a lot for an Americano.

    Milk-based coffees, yes, but I would be wary of paying more than €3 for an Americano unless it was in a decent hotel.
     
  20. gravitygirl

    gravitygirl Frequent Poster

    Posts:
    432
    Last edited: 6 Jan 2019
    I always found Insomnia on the cheaper end of coffee, compared to Costa, Starbucks etc. and they are now charging €2.80 for a regular Americano (standard house blend not the special blend they do/did which is more expensive again) so I would expect other chains to be more expensive probably.

    ETA: Starbucks small 12oz Americano is now 2.90
     
    Last edited: 6 Jan 2019