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since 08/06/2011


Juan Valdez Cafe, Bogota 14/06/2011

Juan Valdez: The authentic Colombian coffee chain

Juan Valdez Cafe, Bogota Its burgundy awnings and sketched man-and-donkey logo can be seen all over the major cities of Colombia. For a foreigner used to the major American coffee giants, Juan Valdez is nothing out of the ordinary. It offers an excellent variety of teas, coffees, chocolates, fruit drinks and ices, including dietary options, a nod to the calorie-counting mania imported from countries where obesity is considered an epidemic. It is usually situated in a modern, open area where its clientele are likely to be able to afford the prices that put it on a par with its overseas counterparts. That is to say if you are Colombian, it is not cheap. If you are from London or New York, you won’t notice much of a difference. The difference is, however, you are paying for a great taste, and an authentic Colombian product which won’t excite the sniffer dogs at customs. The coffee and the variety are second to none, the atmosphere is relaxed and the cafe’s always full of locals (always a good sign). You are allowed half an hour’s free WIFI with each purchase and the service is friendly. My only point of apathy would be the cakes and snacks. Like most coffee chains the portions are in danger of being under-generous and, at times, somewhat congealed. It would be good if the homemade authenticity of the coffee could stretch to the confectionary. But hey, each to their own, and I’m just a pie-face. I can’t understand why Colombian coffee is not more celebrated, or why is hasn’t taken the world by storm ...
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