Mornin' Moonshine in Downtown Phoenix Is Cute but Misses the Mark on Quality

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We loved Mornin' Moonshine's eclectic decor. A strip of what appeared to be mismatched orange carpet squares joined the walls to the ceiling. Simple wooden shelving housed loud, 1960's-style embroidered floral prints and vintage green glassware. Warm grey wooden walls line most of the room, while floor-to-ceiling windows provide a nice view of Monroe street.

Each of these design elements clearly required considerable deliberation, which made the things that were overlooked stick out like a sore thumb. Pastries were gorgeously displayed on cake pedestals under hefty glass domes -- but condiment bar sugar and honey were housed in sticky plastic squeeze bottles with handwritten labels. Ice was stored in an adorable retro ice bucket that was, while wildly impractical, at least in accordance with the decor. In stark contrast, iced coffee was served from a generically modern blue plastic container with a masking tape label. An array of Da Vinci syrup bottles (this might be the Natty Light of the flavored syrup world) were tackily displayed by the bar. Obnoxiously-branded China Mist iced tea containers sat on the counter.

The espresso machine setup was yet another detail that had been simply overlooked. Baristas should never have their backs turned toward their customers. Period. It's just bad service. When a barista has their back toward a guest in their shop, communication is immediately disabled. When communication breaks down, nobody leaves happy. Unfortunately, the machine at Mornin' Moonshine was set up along the wall farthest away from the customer in that scary place where backs are turned, eye contact doesn't exist, and bad drinks come to life.

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Zaida Dedolph
Contact: Zaida Dedolph