By Daniela Ortega, Contributing Reporter
MIAMI BEACH, FLORIDA – Whether one is looking for that intense rush of the Cuban cafecito, or leaning more towards calmly enjoying a cup of sultry cappuccino, Miami Beach offers the best coffee houses to satisfy every taste.
For craft coffee roasting, and the hippest atmosphere in Miami Beach, Panther Coffee at 1875 Purdy Avenue, is the place to be. Their “green” coffee is selected according to taste, individuality and origin, and roasts comes from countries like Nicaragua, Peru, Bolivia, Brazil and Ethiopia.
Founders and coffee aficionados Leticia and Joel Pollock say, their mission is “to source, roast, and prepare the finest coffees in the world, creating a transaction that is mutually beneficial for all participants.”
In addition to their glorious coffee, the baked goods, such as the supersized chocolate chip cookie with potato chips are worth every calorie. There is a second Panther Coffee location in Miami Beach at 1433 Collins Avenue inside the Betsy Hotel.
Even though there are many fantastic coffee shops, “The Finest Italian Coffee” on Miami Beach has been attributed to Shepherd Artisan Coffee, at 919 Collins Avenue in South Beach, as well as 2475 Collins Avenue in Mid Beach.
The coffee shops offer full body flavor Italian coffee that has gone through a special method of processing, “allowing the coffee cherries to dry, causing the fruits and sugars to bake onto the seeds,” resulting in an in tense and amazing flavor. In addition, Shepherd Artisan Coffee has outdoor seating and delicious Mediterranean meals.
While not roasters, another great location for coffee and people and watching, is Aura, the café at Books and Books at 927 Lincoln Road. Immersed in a sea of tourists, guests can spend an afternoon outside, or inside immersed in a sea of books, as they sip specialty coffee.
Chef Bernie Matz partnered with Books and Books owner, Mitchell Kaplan, to create a “culinary and literary Mecca.” The “eclectic and flavorful” menu offers American style delicacies in generous portions.
At 1105 Lincoln Road, one of the most sophisticated and modern coffee shops resides, the Nespresso Miami Boutique. The shop offers a myriad a luxurious coffee beverages (obtained from sustainably farmed coffee around the world), small bites and baked goods, and of course, the infamous Nespresso Coffee Machines that can go for up to $2,000.
Of course, the South Beach staple, News Café, is a must on the list. Located at 800 Ocean Drive, the café is probably the most famous in Miami Beach. It opens 24/7 and its outdoor patio seating and people watching makes this shop one of the most memorable spots that represent the laid-back beach atmosphere.
No coffee shop list in Miami would be complete without highlight the best places to drink that little sweet cup of caffeine high, know as Cuban cafecito. Blended in the roots and flavor of Miami, that special form of coffee making is beloved by locals and tourists alike.
A cafecito, or Cuban espresso, is essentially an espresso shot that is sweetened with sugar – while it’s being brewed. A colada is just a larger, more shareable version of a cafecito usually served in with several small sipping cups.
In Miami Beach, try it in Moreno’s Cuba in 1850 Collins Avenue. The place is known for its colorful decoration, great coffee, live music and outdoor seating. Another quaint South Beach staple is David’s Café Cafecito at 919 Alton Road, which has been serving iconic Cuban coffee and dishes for almost forty years.