In 2009, TOC presented the Coffee Studio with the inaugural edition of this award, in acknowledgement of the Andersonville shop’s giant leap past the grungy salvaged furniture, life-hating baristas and other miserable aspects of coffee-shop culture. Jelena and Darko Arandjelovic’s Wicker Park café once again affirms our faith in humanity—er, coffee shops—with a sleek but still inviting aesthetic that had us thinking we’d walked into a Dwell spread. Best of all, the people who work here are among the nicest on the planet, and their attentive brewing (primarily via pour-over) of beans from cult roasters (such as Santa Cruz’s Verve) yields some of the city’s most distinctive cups of coffee. 1750 W Division St (773-278-2739).
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