Photo: Foodwtf/TikTok

This Vintage NYC Diner Serves Old-School Coca-Cola, Ice Cream Included

New York City Restaurants + Bars
by Matador Creators Jan 10, 2023

Egg creams. Malteds. Root beer floats. Banana splits. Orange creamsicles. Those are the sort of vintage treat that’re on the menu at Lexington Candy Shop in New York City. But it’s the luncheonette’s old-fashioned soda fountain that recently caught the public’s eye. Specifically, the way the shop makes Coca-Cola to order from syrup and soda water, just like when it was invented.

@foodwtf 📍Lexington Candy Shop in #NewYork serves #CocaCola in the old-fashioned way 🥤🤩 Pumps of Coca-Cola are topped with soda water and a scoop of ice cream 🎥 @Nicolas Heller #foodie #nycfoodie #nycrestaurants #cokefloat #icecreamfloat ♬ cola – user19192570443

A brief history of Coca-Cola and the Lexington Candy Shop

A pharmacist in Atlanta named John Pemperton invented Coca-Cola in 1886. He created a syrup that could be mixed with carbonated water at soda fountains and took it to a pharmacy that started selling the drink for five cents per glass. Coca-Cola was first served in a glass bottle in 1894 though the contour bottle design wasn’t introduced until 1914.

Lexington Candy Shop opened in 1925, just over a decade after the iconic Coca-Cola bottle debuted. Still run by the same family, the luncheonette doubles as a 20th-century time capsule from the days when there was a soda shop on every corner, and candies such as Necco Wafers and Charleston Chews were always stocked. (Lexington Candy Shop still stocks classic sweets and serves its Coca-Cola in the shapely pint glasses they were originally served in.) As seen in the video above, even the Coca-Cola comes from the same recipe that was used by the original owners — a special blend of corn syrup, sugar, vanilla extract, and a smattering of other ingredients that give Coca-Cola its unique flavor.

Where to find Lexington Candy Shop

Located in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, the luncheonette is named after its longtime address: 1226 Lexington Avenue, three blocks from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Step inside, and you’ll be transported back in time, with decor from the 1940s including a jukebox, pinball machine, and vintage signs. Sit back, order a Coca-Cola float, and experience a bygone era in the Big Apple. Lexington Candy Shop is hands down one of the coolest places to eat in New York City.

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