I really had high hopes for Macondo. I love their story and the fact that all the coffee is sourced from one family farm. It doesn't get more romantic than that. I love that they offer some classes, too, and the place is friendly.
Macondo is not yet up to the high standards set by Per'la and Panther, though, and here's why.
First, the staff is not being trained as well as they could be. I walked in and asked for beans, and the cashier didn't know they had beans.
The manager tried to help but he had no idea about the different flavor profiles of the coffee. All the manager knew was that the coffee was roasted on premises and that they had light, medium, and espresso roast.
Also, the cashier said, "I suggest you try a latte." Now, I have nothing against lattes or people who like lattes, but why would a serious coffee roaster recommend the least coffee-tasting beverage? A serious roaster stands by their coffee and recommends trying a straight-up pour-over or espresso shot, especially when the customer expresses interest in the coffee beans and not a frothy milk beverage.
Second, the bags of beans do not have the roasting date. They also do not have tasting notes or any other details. Only having "light, medium, and espresso" roast beans is very old school, but it might work when all the coffee is sourced from one farm. However, it is still important to put the roast date and tasting notes on the bag.
Third, I was disappointed in the flavor of the coffee itself. I'm pretty meticulous when I brew. I measure the temperature of the water. I performed a few tweaks during cupping at home but found it overall boring without much depth of flavor, neither in the chocolate flavor zone or in the zone of fruits. I also detect some off-notes like sourness without the bright fruity acidity that makes a fun cup come to life. These issues could be the bean varietal itself, but it could also be the beans were old--and without a roasting date on the bag there is no way of knowing.
Overall, this place has a ton of potential and I hope they can fulfill it. My favorite roaster in Miami is still Per'la.
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