Merida was a great city to ride out the effects of Covid-19 in. It was safe; meaning the local politicians and citizens took (and are taking) the threat seriously. We are still in the mist of this global thorn and we are emerging from a city-wide quarantine in stages. Like most of the expats here, we have been itching to get back out and start safely enjoying this thriving city. We are remote workers and love when we can set up shop in a local coffee house but all coffee shops are not created equal. We look for a few things when we are scoping out a coffeehouse here:
- Size matters. During these infectious times that we are living in ‘space is king’ not to mention we bring our laptops, external hard drives, backpacks, shopping bags….so space is not a desire for us, it is a necessity. Enough space to comfortably stretch our legs and not catch death from anyone.
- STRONG WIFI!
- Good coffee. We are both pretty much addicted to delicious coffee. Colombia spoiled us pretty bad to the point where we do not play around with the flavor of our coffee drinks. She likes it sweet and I like it strong. Either way it is important the establishment serve up a good cup of joe!
- Good a/c. Merida is one of the hottest places we have ever lived and it is very difficult for me to work or enjoy myself while I watch my weight drip unto the floor. We need a cool and comfortable environment.
- Food is also important. Last on our list of must haves for a coffee shop is a decent menu. We love pastries, breakfast foods and all manners of ice cream. A full menu will keep us returning to you place but a partial menu is just fine.
Those are our quantifiers and here are the best 5 coffee shops that we have had the pleasure of visiting in Merida:
Merida Top 5 Coffeeshops for Social Distancing
1. Hands down our favorite coffee shop in Merida is Volta Cafe in Altabrisa. They have a full menu of deliciousness, the service is fantastic, and the space is large, comfortable, clean and bright! I love specialty brews like V60 and Chemex, cold brews and the like and they have a lot of them. Their menu is just short of gourmet. Each dish that we have tried so far marries traditional Mexican food with modern trends like the burrito wrapped in a sweet potato tortilla and served with potato wedges. This dish is freaking exquisite. It is difficult for me not to order it every time we go but we have not had a bad dish yet and we are there all of the time. The best time to go is immediately following breakfast (12-3pm). The place is virtually empty!
2. Coming in at number two for us is The Urban Corner located in The Galerías Mall. It does not serve any craft brews but their house coffee is delicious and strong. They have a full menu of good food, an in house bakery and the run specials every day of the week. Did I mention that the place is huge? There are places to sit in the open air of the mall or inside of the establishment. Great place to grab some java and get the job done!
3. T-Bar in San Ramon Norte. This is a chain here in Merida, but who cares, this place is a wonderful place to work. The environment is ultra chill. They serve a wide variety of – you guessed it – teas, and they also serve up a mean cup of coffee. It is nestled inside of an upper working class neighborhood so it is also surrounded by other coffee shops, gyms, bars and restaurants. They serve a daily special a coffee and danish (pan + cafe) for $49 pesos and the danishes are great! I strongly recommend the almond croissant!
4. Rounding out our forth spot is Estación 72 Cafe in the García Ginerés neighborhood (which is also a great neighborhood to reside in). It’s a gem of an establishment. Their menu is great for lunch and breakfast. The coffee is good and the wifi signal is strong. They house a co-op art shop in their large establishment and the entire vibe of the shop is cool and sleek. It is a great spot if you need to do some inspired creative work.
5. Last on our list is a spot that is simply beautiful – Marago Coffee. Located on the famed Paseo Montejo this restaurant is in the heart beat of Merida. They have an array of specialty brews (my favorite spot for a cold brewed coffee) and a decent menu with vegetarian options (I prefer their breakfast foods). This is the smallest of all of the locations mentioned but it is still a large space with great wifi and wonderful optics.
So that is our list. We visit a lot of great coffee shops on a regular basis and we still have lots of coffeehouses to visit here. We will update this list when we run into any that are great for social distancing and getting work done. We sincerely hope you get a chance to visit these awesome spaces and we sincerely hope you are staying safe in this upside-down world we are living in right now.