During the ‘60s and ‘70s (the Cuban Revolution), many people -- and companies -- abandoned Cuba for a new life in Miami. Places like La Esquina de Tejas and La Milagrosa Supermarket were established and became pillars of the community. In Little Havana -- where 76,000 people reside -- coffee was obviously the drink of choice. The only problem? It wasn’t, and still isn’t, real Cuban coffee.
Unfortunately, due to Cuba-US relations, the Cuban-style coffee -- traditionally served as espresso -- consumed in Miami is not actually from Cuba, but from myriad other coffee producing countries. Coffee was one of the products included in the embargo of the 1960s that’s still in effect today. And even if the markets are opened, don’t expect Cuban Miamians to jump on board. Many Cubans left their native country seeking political asylum or better economic conditions, two things just not possible under communism. So as long as the Cuban coffee industry exists under that political system, it’ll find very few supporters in Miami. This is only compounded by the fact that Cuba’s coffee industry is struggling to survive due to a number of factors like harsh climate, out of date technology, and lack of experienced work force.