Macy's European Coffeehouse, located in historic downtown Flagstaff, is a favorite amongst both locals and tourists. Unfortunately, with this popularity, comes cramped spaces and less than ideal service. Despite failing as a coffeehouse, Macy's offers a delicious vegetarian menu including vegan and gluten-free options.
Macy's offers a full coffee bar and vegetarian menu. To be honest, the drinks have been quite bad on multiple occasions. Every drink has been too weak or too strong. Also, for some reason they never fill the mug up all the way. The loose leaf tea, on the other hand, is quite good especially the Tulsi.
Contrary to the mediocre espresso drinks, the food menu offers lots of great vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free choices. The vegan nachos (blue corn chips, quinoa/bean mixture, guacamole, vegan sour cream, and salsa) were excellent. The Super Veggie sandwich, which can be made vegan and gluten-free with a few minor changes, included a tasty mixture of veggies, avocado, and a vegenaise spread.
Portion sizes are very generous for the cheap prices (A sandwich, 2 drinks, and nachos for $25). All sandwiches are served with blue corn chips and salsa or a side salad. There is no extra charge for gluten free bread, which is always a bonus.
The menu at Macy's is very allergen friendly with each individual item marked according to ingredients, as well as labeled as to its ability to be customized vegan and/or gluten-free.
Unfortunately, the menu is written on a chalkboard and extremely hard to read. I recommend browsing the menu online before your visit.
Service is pretty slow, especially when ordering food, due to the intense crowds. Luckily the food is good, so it is worth the wait, unfortunately the same cannot be said for the espresso drinks.
Ordering at the counter feels a bit rushed due to the crowds lined up behind you. When the lines are long it is much too hard to scan the unreadable menu and make up your mind before your turn.
Also there was a mix up where Macy's was accidentally listed on Groupon. The employees gave us a hard time accepting the Groupon, which in my opinion should have been automatically accepted as it was their mistake. To this date, it still has not been removed. You can't blame customers for buying a Groupon deal that is listed on the site.
The setting works as a laid-back casual lunch cafe, but definitely not as a relaxing coffeehouse. It is much too noisy, cramped, and hectic to enjoy a quiet cup of coffee. In fact, it is hard to even hold a conversation with family and friends over the noise level. I recommend sitting outside if the weather is nice enough.
The decor inside is minimal with wood tables and art, although you wouldn't really notice because it is always too crowded. No couches either - a big thumbs down for a coffeehouse.
Overall, Macy's is a great lunch option for vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free diners. The sandwiches are hearty, healthy, and affordable. Skip the overrated coffee and come for the food instead. There are many better coffee shops in town, however, Macy's does excel on the vegetarian food front.