Ybor City’s Stone Soup Company lives up to its name with 80,000 donations

It comes after 10 years of a quiet buy-one-give-one campaign.

Ybor City’s Stone Soup Company lives up to its name with 80,000 donations

If you’re unfamiliar with the Stone Soup fable, the gist involves soldiers going into a town plagued with famine asking for food. After being refused food by residents, the soldiers begin making “stone soup” using a kettle filled with water and stones. The town grows curious, surrounds the soldiers and slowly begins donating carrots, seasonings and meat to the kettle (as one item at a time isn’t much to share). The tale proves that you can indeed make soup from a stone.

Wanting to echo the sentiment of a community coming together to feed those in need, Stone Soup Company was born.

The restaurant (not be be confused with the Stone Soup Cafe in St. Petersburg) launched in Ybor City 10 years ago with a mission to give back to the community any way it could, even in the pits of the recession.

That meant donating bowls and sometimes entire pots of soups to local Tampa Bay organizations including Tampa Bay Harvest, Tampa Crossroads, and Metropolitan Ministries.

“We’ve done it when times were tough, and now its become a fabric of the organization, "Stone Soup Company's "Soupman" Ilya Goldberg told CL.

Every Friday, the restaurant measures how many cups of soup they sell and attempts to match that same quantity to donate to nonprofit organizations through their buy-one-give-one campaign. 

Last week, Stone Soup Company, located at 1919 E. 7th Ave., donated its 80,000th cup of soup. 

The most recent recipient partner of donated soup went to Hyde Park Methodist Church. The church serves Stone Soup’s donations at a weekly sit-down dinner for those in need who are looking for a hot meal.

“It is sad that the homeless population is living [the Stone Soup fable] on a weekly basis,” Goldberg says.

Looking to get in on the action? When you dine at Stone Soup Company, you can order the Stone Soup for $5, guaranteeing a cup to be donated in the next drop off to a local charity.


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