Cocoa Quest: Mayorga Coffee Factory

I consider chocolate — particularly dark, almost bitter chocolate — a basic food group. And I’m happy to live in an enlightened period in human history, one in which it’s possible to buy serious dark-chocolate beverages with relative ease.

So the description of Mayorga Coffee Factory’s hot chocolate (”handcrafted with European dark chocolate”) raised my hopes. Unfortunately, I was left wondering what exactly they do to that chocolate. The result is less like a fancy chocolate bar grated into milk, and more like a classic American hot cocoa.

That’s not to say that it tastes like a mix, exactly. It’s a better quality drink, smoother and richer than one made from a powder. But it’s too milky, mild and sweet to be filed under the “European dark chocolate” heading.

Of course, hot-chocolate lovers who prefer this style of drink may be pleased. But it’s too bad the South Silver Spring coffee house doesn’t describe it more accurately — not just for my sake, but for fans of mild, sweet, comforting hot cocoa misled into thinking there’s nothing here but a dark, bitter disappointment.

Snag one of Mayorga’s big, comfy leather chairs and soak up the nicest place in town to hang out. Just read the menu with a skeptical eye, at least in the chocolate department.

Mayorga Coffee Factory, 8040 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring, (301) 562-9090.

Linda Lombardi is an Associated Press columnist and freelance journalist who works from her Silver Spring home. Check out her street cred at lindalombardi.com.

6 Responses to “Cocoa Quest: Mayorga Coffee Factory”

  1. LuvMyHood says:

    OK, so Mayorga should rename this drink “Classic American Hot Cocoa” and then invent a real “European Hot Cocoa.” Most businesses need to keep inventing new stuff, so this is a great opportunity. Of all the agonies, injustices, glitches and tiny potholes in the road of life reported and fiercely debated in the Penguin over these many months, this might be the easiest one to fix!

  2. Thien-Kim says:

    I have to say that Mayorga’s service is super spotty. I had organized a lunch get together with some friends last Friday. When we showed up it was closed! Just a sign in the door saying their hours for that day were 1pm-10pm. I mean their normal hours were 7a-10pm. I was very disappointed. What kind of business just closes for the morning?

  3. Terry in Silver Spring says:

    My experiences at Mayorga’s have been lovely across the board. The food is good, the staff is very nice and attentive, and it’s a nice atmosphere.

    I had the cocoa there a couple weeks ago when my nieces were visiting. It was rich, flavorful, the right level of sweetness, and certainly NOT a mix. I enjoyed it and the girls gave it two very big thumbs up.

  4. JG says:

    “I have to say that Mayorga’s service is super spotty.”

    I love Mayorga but I have to agree. I was there a weekend ago and waited for 12 minutes for someone to take my order. There was one person in front of me, but no attention. I tried to make eye contact and finally asked to be helped. The person I asked took a phone call at the same time, talked for a minute or two then went in the back. That’s when I gave up. It’s a shame too, because it’s a great spot to hangout in.

  5. Corona says:

    I love the atmosphere, the food, and the coffee from Mayorga, but the service could be better. Not so much for the counter, but it did take our entrees a good long while to come out when we had breakfast there once. Beyond that though, I’m a big fan.

  6. Mike Garson says:

    I love Mayorga and am glad to see they survived the construction that has been going on around them. I too stopped by last week to find out they were opening late that day. I later found out that Mayorga often uses their very large space for corporate and private events. Who knew. I spoke to the manager who let me know that they do all they can to inform their customers by posting signs on the doors in advance and by posting on their web site. I felt a bit silly getting angry when what she said was in fact on their web site. Considering my cup of coffee does’nt compare to a corporate event I guess I cant get mad at them for paying the rent. I love the place!



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