Seminal Moments in Bridgeport History
The Introduction of the Steak Pack
B! News Food
Culinary historians will debate whether the introduction of the McDonald's Extra Value Meal was the inspiration of for the Ricobene's Steak Pack or vice versa. However, one thing is certain: both of these value meals were byproducts of the economic realities of the times.
The earliest iteration of the Steak Pack was introduced during the recession of the early 1990s. The combination of a half breaded steak sandwich with fries in one cardboard box, accompanied with a medium soft drink of your choice for $5 was a welcome bargain. Neighborhood folks could only point to Laura's lower-priced panzerotti after the 1987 Black Monday market crash as a similar reaction to the economy by the Bridgeport carry out/delivery industry.
However, what we all will remember is that hidden in that seemingly great deal of a Steak Pack was another brutal example of cold blooded Bridgeport market efficiencies. The Steak Pack allowed Ricobene's to reduce the price minimally (.50 cents) from the separately ordered items, but was able to maximize profits. The neighborhood carry-out king was able to reduce the amount of fries in that little pack by more than half and save double by ditching the extra packaging needed for the separate breaded steak and fries.
Ricobene's makes a dollar, you save .50 cents. In other words, a 50% profit. 50% profit back in the day of 4,000 Dows was pretty remarkable. The introduction of the Steak Pack had then solidified what has now become the backbone of Bridgeport Economic Theory: They make more, you get less.