Cafe Bustelo Review – Is It Good?

Cafe Bustelo has earned quite the following among coffee enthusiasts due to its robust flavors and competitive price point, becoming one of the highest-selling Cuban coffees on Amazon with over 850 customer reviews, garnering an average review score of 4.8/5 from consumers – but is this brand actually reliable?

Cafe Bustelo was created by Latin American-born coffee lovers Gregorio Bustelo and his wife. Together, their passion for the beverage resulted in its distinct, robust taste profile which fans admire. Widely considered “poor man’s specialty coffee”, Cafe Bustelo stands out as being an affordable solution that meets various cost constraints for many individuals including cost-conscious consumers and college students alike.

This coffee company stands or falls upon individual tastes for taste and intensity. Dubbed as providing espresso’s powerful kick without needing specialist equipment, the brand has quickly established a place in the market as an enjoyable beverage to consume – with loyalists cherishing every sip while newcomers should expect its robust flavor profile!

cafe bustelo

A Brief History of Cafe Bustelo

Cafe Bustelo, founded by Spanish immigrant Gregorio Bustelo who made East Harlem his new home after experiencing life across Latin American cities like Havana. Since 1928 Gregorio and the Cafe Bustelo brand has enjoyed strong ties to Latin American culture through coffee production and consumption.

At first, Gregorio focused his company’s early days on serving Latino communities across America. By the 1930s he had expanded his sales into bodegas owned by Latinos as well as independent supermarkets; and door-to-door selling of Cafe Bustelo coffee to these establishments. Part of Gregorio’s strategy for building business involved building personal connections with each store owner who eventually became his extended family members.

As its popularity increased, Cafe Bustelo became known for producing flavorful coffee that appealed to more than just those from Latino backgrounds. Over time it has continued to gain global appeal and become one of the iconic coffee brands enjoyed worldwide.

Taste and Flavor Profile

Dark Roast and Its Effects on Flavor

Cafe Bustelo’s Dark Roast and Its Effect on Flavor Cafe Bustelo, revered for its bold and intense flavors, finds its roots in Latin American coffee culture. As a dark roast, its taste profile is affected by roasting process which brings out bittersweet notes in beans that give its espresso and traditional offerings their distinctive punch that may both please and divide coffee enthusiasts. When tasting Cafe Bustelo coffee there’s also bitter and sweet notes which may divide opinions among enthusiasts of coffee culture alike. Providing Bitter and Sweet Notes at Once
Cafe Bustelo stands out amongst competitors by having both bitter and sweet elements present, which help define its distinctive taste profile.

Bitter and SweetTaste of Cafe Bustelo

Bitter: Cafe Bustelo’s legendary bitter taste draws many coffee fans who appreciate strong beverages from Latin American culture, making the regular and Bustelo Supreme espresso offerings particularly notable in this respect. The bitter flavor stands out both within each offering but especially prominent among regular cups.

Sweet: Although Cafe Bustelo coffee has an intense bitter flavor profile, its subtle sweet notes add balance. These notes may include raisins-like aromas or chocolatey or nutty notes depending on brewing method and personal taste; milk or sugar can enhance these notes further to make this coffee more appealing to a wider audience.

Cafe Bustelo stands out among other coffee options thanks to its distinct dark roast and combination of bitter and sweet notes, making it appealing for people seeking an intense coffee experience. Reminiscent of Cuban coffee in taste, its distinctive profile stands out in an otherwise saturated market of options – creating something special in this unique brew’s arsenal of offerings.

Brewing Coffee Bustelo

Espresso-Style Coffee

Cafe Bustelo’s strong flavors lend themselves well to espresso-style coffee brewing. Simply follow your espresso machine instructions while using Cafe Bustelo as the coffee grounds; your finished product will boast rich, chocolatey aroma and taste, perfect for enjoying in traditional espresso cups or as the basis of lattes and cappuccinos!

Drip Coffee Machines

Cafe Bustelo coffee can also be prepared using drip coffee machines; just remember that as it’s an extremely strong blend, using less is recommended to reach desired strength levels. Follow standard brewing process of drip machine but make adjustments according to desired strength levels (i.e. adjust amount of grounds used accordingly).

French Press

Cafe Bustelo coffee can also be prepared using a French press for an equally robust cup. To do so:

Add desired amount of Cafe Bustelo grounds to French press. Boil water, let sit for about 30 seconds to allow it to cool slightly before pouring it through French press saturating evenly across coffee grounds evenly before briefly mixing both water and grounds together before pressing plunger down on plunger rod to release pressure and push plunger outward.

Hold on tight for 4-5 minutes as the coffee soaks. Press slowly down on the plunger until all your brewed coffee has reached your cup!


Pour-Over can also be used to prepare Cafe Bustelo beverages. In order to utilize this technique:

Place a filter into a pour-over dripper and rinse it out using hot water, discarding this rinse water afterward. With coffee grounds from Cafe Bustelo added, pour boiling water onto it before leaving to sit for at least 30 seconds to let the temperature settle a little before pouring out into your cup or on your filter holder.
Begin pouring hot water over your coffee grounds carefully in a circular motion, being careful to evenly moisten them with hot water. Allow any excess liquid to drain through, continuing the pour until reaching desired coffee volume.

By keeping these methods of brewing in mind, you can enjoy Cafe Bustelo’s bold and delectable flavors in all their varieties – from its traditional cafecito to iced coffee and beyond!

Cafe Bustelo Offers Variety of Coffee Products

Cafe Bustelo provides an assortment of products designed to satisfy the different preferences of coffee enthusiasts, from Ground Coffee and Instant Coffee, all the way through K-Cups. In this section we explore their availability in market.

Cafe Bustelo Ground Coffee

Cafe Bustelo ground coffee, made from 100% Arabica beans, is famous for its bold and powerful flavors. Perfect for multiple brewing methods and machines alike, its signature Bustelo Supreme blend features fuller body with less bitterness than its regular blend. Also an excellent option for espresso lovers looking for dark and robust flavor profiles!

Cafe Bustelo Instant Coffee

For consumers who value quick and convenient coffee solutions, Cafe Bustelo’s instant coffee products are a popular option. While being instant, their rich espresso flavor remains intact despite being instant. Regular and decaf varieties of Cafe Bustelo’s instant coffee allow consumers to select their ideal caffeine level while its compact packaging makes it the ideal companion when on-the-go.

Cafe Bustelo K-Cups offer Keurig users another level of convenience, making brewing even faster and simpler than before! Compatible with Keurig machines, these capsules facilitate a quick brew process while offering bold flavors reminiscent of Latin culture for those searching for that authentic Latin flavor!

How It Compares With Similar Brands


Cafe Bustelo and Folgers, two popular American coffee brands, often share similarities when it comes to price, convenience and flavor profiles; both options provide relatively inexpensive coffee choices with wide availability but have distinctively different profiles: Cafe Bustelo is known for its bold Cuban coffee experience while Folgers tends to provide milder medium roast offerings for those preferring an American experience with milder coffee experiences.

Cafe Bustelo generally boasts a stronger and more distinctive aroma compared to Folgers coffee, making it appealing for some coffee drinkers.

Cafe Bustelo uses Arabica beans that are known for their quality and taste while Folgers often contains both varieties within their blends.


Another comparison commonly made is between Cafe Bustelo and Nescafe. Nescafe is a household favorite across many nations and offers everything from instant coffee pods to specialty pods; Cafe Bustelo boasts ground coffee, instant coffee pods and K-Cups and Nespresso capsules specifically tailored for modern coffee appliances – unlike Nescafe which only specializes in instant.

While both brands provide easy and enjoyable coffee drinks, Cafe Bustelo stands out with the distinctive Cuban flair that distinguishes it from Nescafe’s milder blends and tastes. Cafe Bustelo can appeal to those with bold tastes while Nescafe provides options that suit a wider spectrum of preferences.

Cafe Bustelo stands out among other coffee brands due to its distinct Cuban aesthetic, bold flavor profile and affordable pricing compared with Folgers or Nescafe; each brand possesses distinct attributes for which customers tend to favor one brand over the next; Cafe Bustelo stands out for having bold taste options with diverse flavor profiles that attract an avid following.

Availability and Affordability

Cafe Bustelo is well known for being accessible and affordable – both important features that appeal to budget conscious coffee drinkers as well as students looking for delicious beverages that won’t break their wallets! Students also appreciate its great taste without breaking their budgets.

Cafe Bustelo coffee products typically cost roughly $0.44 per ounce, making it one of the more cost-effective coffee choices available to shoppers on a tight budget. A pound can typically be obtained for approximately $10 and makes an ideal addition to their everyday purchases.

Cafe Bustelo coffee can easily be found both online and at various retail locations; such as:

Amazon and Target both carry products suited for Amazon/Target devices; Walmart sells both.
Cafe Bustelo products can easily be found at popular retail locations like Sainsbury’s. In addition, their website showcases an assortment of products designed to cater to various customer preferences and tastes.

Caffeine Content and Strength

Cafe Bustelo’s iconic flavor stands out as being strong yet smooth, making it a fantastic pick for coffee enthusiasts looking for an intense caffeine hit. Produced by Rowland Coffee Roasters of Cuban heritage, its rich taste and intensity has quickly made an impressionful first impression among coffee enthusiasts worldwide.

Cafe Bustelo stands out among regular coffees for having an above-average caffeine content, boasting around 150 milligrams per 12-fluid ounce cup. A 6-fluid ounce serving has between 60-90 milligrams; most likely an average amount is 75. To put things into context, many energy drinks contain lower caffeine concentrations than Cafe Bustelo.

Cafe Bustelo stands out as an especially strong coffee option due to its dark roast and dense flavor profile, providing both taste and energy in equal measures for many coffee enthusiasts. Its intense character even recalls espresso while being prepared using an automatic drip coffee machine! In conclusion:

Cafe Bustelo stands out as being more caffeinated than many regular coffees, boasting approximately 150 milligrams per 12-fluid ounce cup and with its 6-fluid ounce serving containing between 60-90 milligrams, typically 75.

Cafe Bustelo stands out as a stand-out choice among coffee fans looking for an intense coffee experience. With its robust flavor profile and robust character, Cafe Bustelo makes for a captivating coffee experience that won’t fade easily over time.

Be mindful when enjoying Cafe Bustelo’s higher caffeine levels if you are new to coffee drinking or sensitive to it.

Adapting Cafe Bustelo for Other Drinks


Cafe Bustelo’s bold flavor profile makes it the ideal coffee to use when creating cappuccinos. A blend of Arabica and Robusta beans gives this coffee its body and character necessary for standing up against steamed milk and foam found in most cappuccino preparation methods. To craft delicious cappuccino drinks yourself, follow these steps.

Use Cafe Bustelo’s Supreme Espresso to craft an exceptional cappuccino experience! Steam and frother the milk of your choice until desired texture has been reached, pour espresso into a cup, add the desired milk amount – while keeping an equal balance of coffee to milk content in each. Once combined, top this mixture off with foam for that classic cappuccino look!


Looking to add chocolatey notes to your coffee? Cafe Bustelo makes an ideal mocha ingredient; thanks to its robust flavor profile and subtle addition of cocoa. Try this straightforward mocha recipe instead:

Make a shot of Cafe Bustelo’s Supreme Espresso. Blend in cocoa powder or chocolate syrup (in any amount to suit your own personal preferences).

Steam milk separately before pouring it over your mixture of espresso-chocolate. Adjust as necessary until strength of flavor matches desired preference.

Add extra decadence by topping with whipped cream, chocolate shavings or cocoa powder dustings for an indulgent dessert experience.

Iced Coffee

Cafe Bustelo lends itself well to making refreshing iced coffee drinks with ease: its strong flavor complements any added ice well without diminishing its original taste or making for an unpleasant beverage. A deliciously refreshing cup can easily be achieved; simply follow these steps for success:

Brew up a serving of Cafe Bustelo coffee according to your preferred method and allow it to cool at either room temperature or chilled in the fridge, before filling a glass with ice cubes before pouring the cold coffee over them – adding milk, cream or sweeteners as desired.

Cafe Bustelo makes creating delicious coffee beverages easy thanks to its distinctive blend of Arabica and Robusta beans, whether that means enjoying delicious cappuccinos, decadent mochas or crisp iced coffee beverages – whatever suits your fancy, Cafe Bustelo has your coffee beverage needs covered!

The Cult Following

Cafe Bustelo has amassed an ardent fan following in Miami since opening their coffee house there decades ago, particularly thanks to their signature espresso-style beverage that appeals to customers from every walk of life. Their brand remains beloved among both residents and visitors, becoming part of its culture as an essential staple.

Cafe Bustelo’s authenticity and flavor is highly prized across both Cuban-inspired coffee shops in Miami as well as everyday homes throughout its popularity reaffirmed in Miami due to its deep historical roots in Latin American espresso-style coffee culture and original inspiration from Cuba itself, creating an inextricable link to Cuban heritage that cemented its success here.

Students appreciate Cafe Bustelo’s convenient products like K-Cup(r) pods, espresso capsules and yellow can or brick forms for quick caffeine boost. With such flexible brewing methods available to them, these make an easy choice when students need quick energy boost.

While Cafe Bustelo enjoys an enthusiastic following, not everyone may appreciate its distinctive taste. Some coffee critics have reported vegetal notes or even soy sauce in their experiences with its instant espresso version; nevertheless many remain fans and enthusiasts of Cafe Bustelo’s unique taste and have built communities dedicated to this coffee brand.