Ana Ocansey-Jimenez and Oneida Franco became friends in New York when they worked together as accountants. While at an office, they started a tradition where they shared a cup of Cuban coffee (aka a cafecito) in their break room every morning.
Today, Ocansey-Jimenez and Franco are the founders of Casa Dos Chicas Café, a specialty coffee company that sources organic produce from Latin America and the Caribbean. During an interview with Girls Talk HQfriends and business partners discussed what it’s like to be part of the multi-billion dollar coffee industry.
“The idea for Casa Dos Chicas Café was nurtured by building our friendship, sharing our cultures through food, and consuming cafecito during our work time,” the duo said. “We parted ways as we continued to develop our careers, but we stayed in touch. We would continue to see each other often for lunch and of course enjoy our coffee and dream about the future.
Once they familiarized themselves with coffee culture, their business took off. The duo said they have “seen the inequalities throughout [the industry]” and decided they wanted to make an impact in their own way. “We saw a gap where we could educate about what specialty coffee is, why it’s special, and how they too can have it and enjoy it,” they said.
This includes “bringing back the traditional Latin American coffee-making methods”, which they learned from their Cuban and Mexican families. “We’re bringing back the moment of just taking a break during the afternoon while having a cup of coffee,” they said. “We are on a mission to empower women in the coffee supply chain.”