Panera Bread – not a lot of value for what you get

Going to Panera Bread this morning reminded me of what an expensive place that really is.  $3.59 will get a souffle but it is rather small – left me hungry.  The coffee is not cheap either- for a gourmet mocha, cappuccino, or Carmel latte, you can spend almost $4.00 (with tax), and it is not as good as Starbucks or a stand alone coffee shop. 

My friend got a bagel for $1.39 -you think that would at least come with schmear (cream cheese) but no, that is an extra $1.10- that’s right folks, after spending $2.50, you finally get a bagel with a side of cream cheese.  Compare that to Einstein bagels or Bruegger’s and you are looking at a piss poor value.  Granted, the atmosphere is nice and the food is good but is it worth $8.49 for a chicken walnut salad?  Not really especially when you consider that in Colorado, that price tag can get you a full meal including drink in other joints.  This is not a restaurant and not gourmet so, it leaves you wondering why charge $6.39 for a half of a dinky sandwich and soup?  Remember, you pay $1.00 more if you get a SIGNATURE soup or salad with that SIGNATURE sandwich so for $8.39, you get half of a sandwich a small soup or salad.  To me, places like Atlanta Bread Co., Panera, and the like just do not make sense.

I learned that this morning when for two people to eat a light breakfast and have coffee, our total tab with tax was $14.00 – not a good value in my opinion.  Anyway, there are positives of this place and if you just get a bagel and a regular coffee (instead of the signature stuff), you can get great values here but if you want a signature salad or sandwich, an egg souffle or a bagel with cream cheese for breakfast- this may not be the RIGHT VALUE for you!

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