Bello Mundo, located in downtown San Luis Obispo, is the perfect combination of quirky, homey and light. Bello Mundo translates to ‘beautiful world,’ a concept that is accurately captured and delivered to each customer through every aspect of this coffee shop.
Bello Mundo has been open in SLO for four and a half years and has become a hot spot for students of Cal Poly and San Luis Obispo residents alike. People can come to do homework, find some peace and quiet, or just catch up with friends over a cup of coffee.
Bello Mundo puts a heavy focus on making things from scratch and using only the best ingredients to create the best flavors. Their respect for ingredients is prevalent in the almond milk that is pressed on site, the chocolate that is hand shaved for each mocha and the baked goods made daily from scratch. A couple popular items include their croissants, quiche, cupcakes and gluten free scones.
The coffee beans are carefully selected from around the world and only the highest quality beans are purchased. Co-Owner Jonathan Stauf explained that they always carry beans to fill a wide spectrum of flavors.
During my experience, I was able to taste coffee roasted from beans out of Ethiopia and Guatemala. The side by side comparison made it easy to appreciate the differences between the two. The Guatemalan coffee came from traditionally wet roasted beans, resulting in a flavor that is classically dark and strong with hints of chocolate and soft fruit. The coffee from Ethiopia was a completely different experience. The beans were processed inside the fruit that they grew in, giving the coffee an incredibly fruity aroma with accents of cherry, blueberry and strawberry. No matter how strong (or not strong) you like your coffee, you will be able to find something you enjoy at Bello Mundo.
Each item of Bello Mundo’s menu is reminiscent of the country it came from. The chai will take you to India, and the espresso is done the traditional Italian way. The cafe also uses the almond meal that is a byproduct of their almond milk production in many of their baked goods, so no food goes to waste—and it allows them to make many products gluten free or vegan.
If you are not already convinced to come try Bello Mundo, there is one other factor separates this place from every other coffee shop. The space is split into two sections: one for laptops, and one where laptops are banned. In this day and age, it’s so easy to get wrapped up in technology and forget about the people that surround you every day. Bello Mundo emphasizes how important community is, especially in SLO. We are, after all, the happiest city in America.
Bello Mundo has a menu that can take you around the world, but an atmosphere that makes you feel entirely at home. The cafe subtly reminds you to stop and appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. It takes a pretty spectacular cup of coffee to do that, but Bello Mundo does it each and every day.