Photos by Asia Morris.
While Long Beach boasts a small slew of independent coffee shops and roasters (think Lord Windsor Roasters and Portfolio Coffee House), we’re certainly not opposed to a big-named brand infiltrating our midst—as long as you’re talking a high quality cup of coffee. And with eight locations in Los Angeles County (and two in the Bay Area), it seems about time Long Beach was graced with the goodness of Tierra Mia’s coffee-making prowess.
Tierra Mia Coffee, known for its Latin-inspired beverages and brand, just opened in the Sixth District on Friday and will be open until midnight. Whether you order from the drive-thru or step inside the establishment, make sure to try one of the chain’s signature drinks; choose from a Mocha Mexicano, Horchata Latte, Coco Loco Latte, Cubano con Leche, Horchata Frappe or Mojito Mint Tea Lemonade.
Photo of Tierra Mia's Chocolate Mexicano de Guadalajara.
“Big things are happening in the Sixth District,” stated Councilman Dee Andrews. “I want to thank the owners for investing in our community, not only as business owners but as property owners as well. This is just the beginning, there is much more to come.”
When Founder and President Ulysses Romero opened the first Tierra Mia in South Gate in 2008, the Los Angeles Times wrote, "His goal is to surpass Starbucks in quality and entice Latinos and others with Latin-inspired coffee drinks, as well as beverages familiar to most coffee-chain regulars."
The Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic, Jonathan Gold, wrote a short critique about the Latin American "third-wave" coffeehouse for LA Weekly, stating, among other doting details, that Tierra Mia not only provides "world-class espressos and lovingly brewed coffees from tiny El Salvador estates, but killer Cuban-style café con leche, syrupy and rich in a way rare even in Miami; lattes enriched with the Mexican rice-pudding drink horchata; and mochas flavored with an intense, peanutty chocolate Romero brings in from Guadalajara that is to commercial Mexican drinking chocolate what a Stone IPA is to a can of Coors Light."
With their newest location planted in the Poly High area and a line of patrons already out the door on Friday, in addition to a line of vehicles almost to the street from its drive-thru, Tierra Mia Coffee certainly seems to live up to its description of “one of California's leading providers of high quality craft coffee.” Perhaps what's equally distinctive about the company is how it pays the farmers growing the crops, usually 100 to 400 percent above fair trade price levels, in an effort to create and maintain a sustainable system.
Photo of Tierra Mia's iced Horchata Latte and Horchata Frappe.
The company sources its beans green from Latin American micro lots, meaning the supply comes from a single farmer and/or is deemed the small, distinct “cream of the crop” of a larger estate. Once sourced, the beans are roasted with a 1957 Probat roaster, while La Marzocco equipment and Mazzer grinders are used to create their espresso, according to the site.
“We are very grateful to Councilman Andrews for his support in bringing Tierra Mia Coffee to Long Beach,” stated Romero. “We are excited to be opening in the 6th District and look forward to creating a positive gathering place for the Long Beach community.”
For more information about Tierra Mia Coffee, visit the website here.
Tierra Mia Coffee is located at 425 East Pacific Coast Highway.