Same-Meal-at-the-Same-Restaurant price index. I don’t even want to calculate the increase for this meal.

My reaction every time I see the total on the grocery store cash register.
Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

Before leaving California I provided several illustrations of the actual price increases at a specific restaurant for the identical meal. Since moving to Williston, North Dakota I don’t have a lot of good data points yet. We’re still going to different restaurants and ordering different items so I don’t have a useful point-to-point comparison.

Yesterday my son gave me a painful example.

Last March he ordered one foot-long sub sandwich, a 6 inch sandwich, and one soda.

The price?


Yesterday he ordered the exact same items from the same restaurant.

The price?


From $13 to $36 in 11 months.

Ouch, ouch, and ouch again.

That is somewhere between two and three times as expensive. (Hint: that means the increase is somewhere between 200% and 300%.) I don’t want to calculate the exact percentage.

In addition that is for 11 months. I’m not about to annualize the change.

So yeah, if it seems like the prices you’re actually paying at the restaurant and grocery store are radically worse than the official government statistics, it is not your imagination.

As a frame of reference, the official inflation rate for 2022 measured by the CPI – All Urban Consumers was 6.5%.

The food component increase in the CPI during 2022 was 10.4%.

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