Raleigh’s first pay-what-you-can cafe is expanding – WRAL.com

— The Triangle’s first pay-what-you-can cafe is growing.

A Place at the Table announced plans Monday to expand into a neighboring space along West Hargett Street.

A Place at the Table opened in January 2018 and has since served more than 9,000 meals to those in need.

“With additional indoor and outdoor seating and a professional kitchen, we’ll be able to realize the full potential of how A Place at the Table can serve the Raleigh community,” Founder and Executive Director Maggie Kane said.

The restaurant currently serves only breakfast and lunch menu items. While those hours aren’t changing, the menu offerings will grow and the space will be available for fundraising and community events in the evening.

The expansion will create more employment and opportunities for training, as well as more space for those wishing to volunteer at the cafe. Currently about 40 to 50 people volunteer per day.

“It has always been important to us to offer a menu and overall restaurant experience that is appealing and accessible to every demographic,” Kane said.

Before opening last year, A Place at the Table was in development for three years.

A Place at the Table

All food and beverages at the cafe are pay-what-you-can.

The pay-what-you-can model allows people to pay in one of five ways:

  • pay what they can afford
  • pay a suggested donation
  • pay what they would typically pay plus a donation
  • pay specifically for someone else’s full meal
  • pay by volunteering

The nonprofit’s pay-what-you-can approach for food and drink is based on a model by the One World Every Body Eats Foundation. There are more than 60 cafes operating with this approach.

A Place at the Table is open 7 a.m. until 2 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.