Among the products advertised at the church location is pour over coffee via a Chemex. On Friday the 24th of January, I asked for the Chemex pour over. I figured it would be a great time to do so because the Friday services aren’t as packed as the Sunday services. I was initially rebuffed, and told that they don’t serve Chemex pour over. I responded to this by suggesting that they should not advertise Chemex pour over if they don’t sell it. The barista then said it’s not that they don’t serve it, it’s that they don’t serve it on Fridays, because they don’t get a lot of demand on Fridays and thus they don’t bother.
This did not make a lot of sense to me but I let it go. Come Sunday, the 26th of January, I go and try again. The same Barista is working this day as on Friday. She pulls out the Chemex, but then turns around and puts it away. She tells me that they don’t do Chemex pour overs on Sundays, because demand is so high that taking the time to do a pour over would be an inefficient use of time.
I believe them and their reasoning, but what I don’t understand is why they advertise Chemex Pour over in the first place. They won’t ever serve it to you no matter the day so why advertise it? And while the excuse they gave me on Sunday makes sense, their reasoning for not serving it on Friday seems specious and arbitrary.
The excuses given to me conflict with each other; both of them can’t be true at the same time. So it follows that they lied to me about their policy either one or both of the times.
It’s wholly unprofessional behavior and not a good reflection on their brand. For anyone who’s still wondering why local coffee shops struggle against the likes of Starbucks, despite their superior craft and product, Macondo offers a clear answer: Service. What Starbucks may lack in taste and craft, it more than makes up for in customer service, in consistency, in experience. Neither I nor anyone else ever has to worry about which Starbucks to go to to get what you want: you can go to whichever because they’re all going operate up to their standards. And Starbucks has been very good about putting those sold out stickers on their seasonal products when they run out.
Perhaps I’m overreacting, after all, it’s not that I can’t get coffee at Macondo, it’s that I can’t get Chemex pour over coffee. And besides, how big of a difference can there be between the Chemex pour over coffee and the regular brew? But I disagree, and so does Macondo. The Chemex pour over costs $3 more than regular, and there’s a reason Macondo advertises it in the first place: it bolsters their brand of precision, artisan coffee.
This is how Macondo competes against the likes of Starbucks, it posits it’s brand of flavorful, exotic, authentic, and artisan coffee as a relief against the corporate uniformity of Starbucks. Macondo says if you want hot sugar water that’s flavored with coffee grounds, you should stick with Starbucks, but if you want real coffee from the foothills of Colombia, expertly prepared by Baristas who take their craft seriously, come to Macondo.
So that’s really my issue with Macondo. They like to benefit from a brand that advertises Chemex pour over but can’t be bothered to make it. I planned parts of my day around the expectation of getting Chemex pour over coffee at Macondo, only to be sorely disappointed both times. And yes, it sounds silly to get worked up over not getting a Chemex pour over but what’s the point of cafes if not to get a product that you can’t make at home? I don’t have a Chemex myself so I decided to patronize this business establishment which advertised such a product. They needlessly lied to me about the products they offer and because I relied on that lie, I ended up without any coffee.
False advertisement, disappointing service, and lying baristas. You’re better off making your own coffee at home, going to Starbucks, or going to Panther Coffee.