Monday, March 8, 2021

[EXCLUSIVE] $100 Lobster Rolls and $10 Ice Cream Sandwiches are Coming to Midtown

Two new eateries are hoping to beat the odds and find success along Peachtree Street in Midtown.  BK Lobster, not Burger King's entry into lobster rolls, but instead a new-to-market lobster franchise, will open in the former Vitality Bowls, while Cathy's Gourmet Ice Cream Sandwiches will open next door in a space most recently home to Purely gelato, tea and bowl eatery.  

Both shops are located in the street level retail of the Viewpoint apartment high-rise in the 800 block of Peachtree Street in Midtown.  Coming soon signage is already up for Cathy's, while "BK Lobster ATL" has been discussed on the restaurant's social channels but has no signage up as yet.  

The new BK Lobster will be 1,290 square feet and mark the Brooklyn-based chain's first southern location.  The fledgling franchise has reportedly been scouting metro Atlanta for several months and recently secured the Peachtree Street space.  The concept was created by Rodney Bonds, a former real estate franchise developer, who after launching the BK Lobster concept in Brooklyn in 2019 has grown the business to include two other New York outposts with a fourth expected to open later this month in Harlem. 

The menu at BK Lobster is lobster-heavy with the crustacean offered fried, in a roll and with mac & cheese, among other preparations.  The restaurant also offers a $100 "Golden Lobster Roll," which is wrapped in edible 24K gold leafs and served with a glass of "23K Gold Luxury Wine."  BK Lobster also offers wings, smoked salmon, shrimp, snow crab legs and fries, among other options.  

BK Lobster, which gets its name from Brooklyn, aka "BK," describes itself: "We are a Franchise fast casual seafood concept with a lounge feel to our locations..." In addition to the Harlem and Atlanta locations, another franchise is coming soon to Richmond, Virginia and potentially, by way of a ghost kitchen, to Miami.  Bonds has reportedly signed agreements to open at least fifteen more BK Lobster franchises across the country.  

Cathy's Gourmet Ice Cream Sandwiches will open to the right of BK a 904 square foot space.  The new Viewpoint location will reportedly be in addition to, rather than instead of, the previously announced 999 square foot Cathy's planned for The Interlock on Howell Mill in West Midtown.  Owner Catheryn Greene opened the original Cathy's in downtown Cleveland, Ohio in 2018.  Greene, a Spelman College alum, "fell in love with Atlanta" while attending Spelman and reportedly has plans for several metro locations of her ice cream sandwich business.  

The cookies at Cathy's are reportedly scratch-made in house, but the ice cream is all store bought, according to store employees, so it's hard to stomach the $10 per cookie sandwich price.  (The sandwiches were reportedly $7.50 pre-COVID, but increased to $10 last year.)   Although far less "insta" ready, a "Tiffwich" at cookie shop Tiff's Treats can be had for only four bucks, up from $3.50.   

Greene, Bonds and the local BK franchisees are all Black business owners and while there has been recent widespread rallying around black-owned businesses, a study last summer by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York found that Black-owned businesses have been almost twice as likely to fail as businesses overall, during the current pandemic. 

Are you excited for the openings of BK Lobster and Cathy's in Midtown?  Why do you think so many restaurants fail in Midtown Atlanta?  Have you ever been to BK Lobster or Cathy's?

Please share your thoughts below  


Sean Rides said...

I'm excited for some new businesses on Peachtree. Lets go an enjoy them now and frequently so they don't go out of business like everything else on Peachtree.

Kelly Logue said...

I will never pay 10 bucks for store bought ice cream sandwiches and as for a 100 dollar lobster roll, never gonna do that either. If I have edible gold on a dish I will get the service and ambiance that goes with it not fast casual.

Seth Mohs said...

The $100 sandwich is obviously a marketing ploy and not really much of a seller. Brown bag has a great lobster roll, so I am interested in this one too. The ice cream sandwiches will be fun. Sounds like a place like the sugar factory where the look is more important than the taste, worth a try though. Thrill to see new places trying.

Anonymous said...

Overpriced and another joke. Those retail spaces have been turned over and over again with the same and they all last a few months and fail. This aint Rodeo Drive. When will they learn.

Ronnell Rock said...

I look forward to interesting food concepts and don't mind spending $10 for and ice cream sandwich or $100 for a lobster roll. When we start to place value on experience instead of per pound of ice cream we could get from the cheapest distributor, perhaps we'll be able to keep small businesses flourishing and quit fighting to suppress minimum wages

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