Tel Aviv coffee drinkers woke up to a new era on Monday with the launch of Cofix, a takeaway-only coffee shop that offers each item on its menu for just 5 shekels ($1.42) apiece. And it's kosher, too.
The new establishment sells a variety of hot coffees, iced coffee, soft drinks, mineral water and freshly squeezed juices, as well as hot and cold sandwiches and baked goods.
No fewer than 2,000 customers stopped by for the grand opening of the store on central Ibn Gabirol Street on Monday. Most other coffee shops in Israel sell takeaway coffees for 10-20 shekels ($2.80-$5.60) each, although some have coffee-and-croissant deals for around 15 shekels ($4.30).
The chain owner, businessman Avi Katz, expects to open 100 new stores around the country this year. Katz's other endeavors include a successful dollar-store chain and the Kfar Hashaashuim toy store franchise.
"We used to think that cheap is no good and expensive is good. Today we want good but also low prices," Katz said. "The prices of all consumer goods, such as televisions and clothing, have fallen dramatically over the last few years. Only food prices have increased, and the only reason for that is [market] concentration."
Katz rejected any notion that the 5-shekel menu was a sales gimmick.
"We are going to keep these prices. A cup of coffee costs us 2 shekels [$0.57] to make. Our goal is to sell a minimum of 2,000 items per day," he said.
While a 5-shekel menu may be new for coffee shops in Israel, the McDonald's hamburger chain -- known in the U.S. for its extensive dollar menu -- still manages to one-up Katz's prices, selling cappuccinos for NIS 4.90 ($1.39) and espressos NIS 3.90 ($1.11) each.