The best coffee in Chicago

From the best coffee shops to how to do pour-over, here's everything you need to navigate Chicago's coffee scene

Coffee as mere caffeine conveyance? That's so 1992. In Chicago and other big cities, people's interest in their cup of joe actually tasting good started with, yes, that big green monster called Starbucks in the early '90s. But about 10 years later the second wave of coffee innovation was upon us, and everybody (Intelligentsia and Metropolis, specifically) started roasting their own beans in small, carefully sourced batches. We were hooked.

Chicago is now deep in the third wave of coffee culture typified by new brewing techniques, such as the time-consuming pour-over method, that bring out nuanced flavors. Indie coffee shops are so serious about their beans and brewing they're as obsessive as Chicago's best bartenders. But the more obsessive they become about their techniques, the more obsessive we become about their coffee.

Here's our guide to Chicago coffee: where to drink it, Chicago restaurants making great coffee drinks, what to eat at coffee shops (hint: the best doughnuts in Chicago) and unexpected spots for a great cup.

Restaurants

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Bars

6 coffee cocktails to drink

Here are six to try at brunch

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Best coffee shops

These are the best spots to fuel up

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5 new coffee shops open

We review 5 new cafes

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Best decaf coffee

Six places to get good decaf coffee

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Restaurants

Unusual spots to get coffee

Grap a cup of joe at a hat store, bars and more

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Restaurants

Coffeehouses with good food

These spots take their food as seriously as their coffee

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Restaurants

Our barista crushes

Readers and staffers reveal their favorite baristas

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Restaurants

Pour-over coffee

We go to Asado Coffee Co. to learn the pour-over

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Restaurants

Quirky coffeehouses

Five coffee shops with quirky decor

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Restaurants

Confessions of a barista crush

Kris Vire confesses his crush on a barista

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