Toast Data: Coffee and Tea Trends in All 50 States, New Restaurant Wage Data, and Breakfast Performance

The Q1 2024 Restaurant Trends report examines coffee and tea trends in all 50 states, breakfast transactions in 20 U.S. cities, and restaurant employee wage data.

BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Toast (NYSE: TOST), the all-in-one digital platform built for restaurants, today announced its Q1 2024 Restaurant Trends Report, providing insight into the overall state of the U.S. restaurant industry through an analysis of aggregated data from selected cohorts of restaurants and in select U.S. cities on the Toast platform, which serves approximately 112,000 restaurant locations as of March 31, 2024. Read more details about our methodology below.


Key takeaways:

In Q1 2024, guests across the U.S. paid an average of $3.08 for a cup of regular coffee, $5.14 for cold brew, $5.46 for lattes, and $3.74 for tea.1

Tea is more popular than regular coffee in 30 states.2

Saturday breakfast transactions grew 6% YOY (year-over-year), and Mondays dipped 4% YOY.3

In Chicago, servers and bartenders at full-service restaurants earned a median hourly wage of $9.48 in Q1 2024, which is up from $9.00 in Q1 2022. 4

In Washington, D.C., servers and bartenders at full-service restaurants earned a median wage of approximately $8 in Q1 2024, up from $5.05 in Q1 2022.4

In April, quick-service restaurant workers’ hourly wages in California increased 4% month-over-month, from $17 to $17.75.5

Delaware was the most generous state overall for tipping, with an average total tipping percentage of 22.1%.6

Menu insights for the Restaurant Trends Report are powered by a Toast benchmarking tool, which leverages an AI-based classification tool and allows users to compare restaurant and menu category performance against aggregated data from Toast restaurants.

The price of coffee, tea, cold brew, and lattes in all 50 states

Whether it’s a hot cup of joe, a delicately crafted latte, or a comforting cup of tea, Americans are known for their love of caffeinated beverages. But in recent months, there’s been an increased focus on the price of coffee in particular, as extreme weather has affected harvests and sent global coffee prices soaring, according to the Wall Street Journal.

To understand how much Americans pay per cup, Toast analyzed the average price of regular coffee, cold brew, lattes, and tea in each U.S. state. On average, consumers paid $3.08 for a cup of regular coffee, $5.14 for cold brew, $5.46 for lattes, and $3.74 for tea in Q1 2024.

Hawaii had the most expensive coffee in the country, with an average price of $4.89 — approximately 59% higher than the national average. California was the second-most expensive, averaging about $1 less than Hawaii at $3.88, which is 26% higher than the national average. On the other end of the spectrum, the average price for a cup of coffee in Nebraska in Q1 2024 was just $2.12 — 31% lower than the national average.

Toast noticed similar trends with cold brew and tea, with Hawaii and California pushing the top end of pricing, but Alaska bumped California out of the number two spot for the most expensive latte at $6.09. What is the average price of a latte in Hawaii? A whopping $6.69. The sky-high prices of lattes in Hawaii and Alaska are likely driven by the price of milk and the remoteness of the two states. Prices for milk in these states are among the highest in the nation, and shipping goods such as espresso to these regions only increases those prices.

View the full report on the Toast Newsroom.

Methodology:

1Toast analyzed transactions at restaurants on the Toast platform from January 1, 2024, to March 31, 2024, to determine the price of drinks labeled “regular coffee,” “cold brew coffee,” “latte,” and “tea.” Drinks in the “tea” category include specialty, iced, black, herbal, and green tea. Milk tea is not included in this analysis.

2Toast analyzed transactions on the Toast platform from April 28, 2023, to March 31, 2024, to determine the popularity of drinks labeled “regular coffee,” “cold brew coffee,” “iced coffee,” “latte,” “espresso,” “cappuccino,” “mocha” “Americano,” “milk, tea” and “tea.” Drinks in the “tea” category include specialty, iced, black, herbal, and green tea. Analysis dates were increased beyond Q1 to remove seasonality ordering preferences.

3Toast analyzed restaurant breakfast transactions in 20 cities on the Toast platform from 5 a.m. and 11 a.m. in Q1 2023 compared to Q1 2024. Toast used a cohort of same-store restaurants on the platform since Q4 2022.

4Data from applicable same-store full-service restaurants on the Toast platform from January 1, 2022, to March 31, 2024. Salaried, overtime, and bonus wages are not included. Paid time off is not included. Servers and bartenders included in the analysis worked a minimum of five hours in the payroll period and received tips greater than zero. Servers and bartender job titles included a version of the words “bartender,” “server” or “wait.” Hourly wages do not include tips. Base wages are the total wages divided by the number of hours. Tips per hour are the total reported tips divided by the number of hours.

5Data from applicable same-store quick-service restaurants on the Toast platform from January 1, 2022, to March 31, 2024. Salaried, overtime, and bonus wages are not included. Paid time off is not included. Employees included in the analysis worked a minimum of five hours in the payroll period. Employees who received tips were included, but tips were not included in the analysis. Base wages are the total wages divided by the number of hours.

6Data from applicable full-service restaurants on the Toast platform where a tip was added to the order via a card or digital payment from January 1, 2022, to March 31, 2024. Cash tips are not included in the analysis.

About the Restaurant Trends Report:

The Restaurant Trends Report, powered by Toast, uncovers key trends across the restaurant industry through aggregated sales data from a selection of cohorts of restaurants on the Toast platform, which has approximately 112,000 locations as of March 31, 2024. This information is provided for general informational purposes only, and publication does not constitute an endorsement. Toast does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of any information, text, graphics, links, or other items contained within this content. Individual results may vary. Toast does not guarantee you will achieve any specific results if you follow any advice herein. It may be advisable for you to consult with a professional such as a lawyer, accountant, or business advisor for advice specific to your situation. The Restaurant Trends Report is not indicative of the operational performance of Toast or its reported financial metrics.

About Toast

Toast [NYSE: TOST] is a cloud-based, all-in-one digital technology platform purpose-built for the entire restaurant community. Toast provides a comprehensive platform of software as a service (SaaS) products and financial technology solutions that give restaurants everything they need to run their business across point of sale, payments, operations, digital ordering and delivery, marketing and loyalty, and team management. We serve as the restaurant operating system, connecting front of house and back of house operations across service models including dine-in, takeout, delivery, catering, and retail. Toast helps restaurants streamline operations, increase revenue, and deliver amazing guest experiences. For more information, visit www.toasttab.com.

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