How two neighboring shops help each other

At a time when eatery options in New York may seem endless, you would think that competition would be at an all-time high. However, that's not the case on the Upper East Side.

"I think it started with milk. It's so funny to tell a customer 'We don't have milk and we are desperate,'" said Kerem Goktas, who manages Le Gourmet on 1st Avenue. 

Three years ago, Goktas turned to Padoca Bakery next door for help.

"So we knocked on their door and that's how it started," Goktas said. He asked manager Megan Sesil if she could help with his little crisis.

"I don't view Le Gourmet as our competition," Sesil said. "We're neighbors so we're friends, And things happen. So we have to rely on each other sometimes."

The shops help each other out when supply for a certain item is running low or deliveries are late.

"So I order a bunch of coffee filters and they're supposed to come at 6 a.m. and it doesn't show up till noon, and you can't make coffee without a coffee filter," Sesil added. "So, it's nice to be able to run over and borrow a couple,"

From milk to coffee filters to lids and disposable cups and trays. The swaps have become endless. Onyi Balogun is a frequent Le Gourmet customer who believes this business model should serve as an example.

"I never thought that stores kind of gave each other a cup of milk or cups or anything because you think one person wants to outdo the other but it's really nice, in general," Balogun said. "We need more of this in the world."

A new day can bring a new minor mishap. Whatever the situation may be going forward, these two businesses know they will always have a reliable neighbor to count on.