The Beginning of Café Bustelo®
Nearly a century ago, a young, ambitious Gregorio Bustelo arrived in East Harlem, New York from Spain. A man consumed by wanderlust, Gregorio visited many Latin American cities throughout his lifetime, including the cultural capital of Havana, Cuba. He went on to be known for his espresso-style coffee and became one of the most prominent names within the Latin coffee community.
INSPIRED BY DEEP LATIN ROOTS, BORN IN EAST HARLEM IN 1928
Gregorio built the foundation of his business on three things: his love for delicious Latin coffee, supporting his community and bringing people together. Using a secret blend of coffee beans, Gregorio crafted the beloved, rich flavors that consumers now recognize as Café Bustelo, an authentically Latin, espresso-style coffee.
In the beginning, he sold his hand-ground coffee to local East Harlem theater patrons, with the hopes of running his own roaster someday. Using the money Gregorio had saved while working at the restaurant in Hotel Pennsylvania, he opened a New York City storefront in 1928 on 5th Avenue called Bustelo Coffee Roasters. It was one of the first coffee roasters to cater to all Latino communities. In the 1930’s, Gregorio began selling Café Bustelo coffee to Latino-owned bodegas and independent supermarkets, going door-to-door to build his business while also maintaining close friendships with owners whom he considered family.
LATIN COFFEE FROM THE BARRIO TO COFFEE CUPS EVERYWHERE
After falling in love and marrying his wife Angelina, the couple grew the business into a thriving coffee company. Their dedication to brewing high-quality, espresso-style coffee with bold flavor propelled Café Bustelo from East Harlem and Miami to bodegas and coffee pots across America. While its distribution has grown significantly over the years, the original authentic Café Bustelo blend is still coveted by Café Bustelo loyalists today.