You know you’re a real New Yorker when you can’t live without your morning sips from your favorite coffee shop. NYC boasts a dizzying array of coffee shops, as well as java-pouring donut shops and bakeries, so we’ve cut through the noise to bring you the best cafés and espresso bars at which to get your morning jolt. Whether you’re after cold iced coffee, a frothy latte or a great pour-over, these are the best coffee shops across the boroughs.
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Best coffee shops in NYC
This international coffeehouse draws on Spanish, Italian and Middle Eastern traditions. Snacks, like seasonal frittatas and honey-saffron cake, are offered alongside espresso drinks made from house-roasted beans.
This sleek, lightwood-laden space is a respite amongst hectic happenings in Bushwick. Coffee—roasted in-house—at Sey is Nordic-style, said to be a lighter roast. People love the coffee so much its started to pop-up at some of our favorite restaurants. The best part? Stay for coffee and you'll be offered seltzer on an elegant wood tray.
There’s so much to poke fun of at this chichi coffee shop. Take the Pepto-pink room that could double as a Wes Anderson set or its preening “every coffee has a story” motto or the tableside rose-water spritzes. But our cynical hearts are melted from its new-age java creations. A standout is the "Deconstructed Espresso Tonic," which comes in a Bordeaux wineglass filled with tonic water, non-alcoholic Campari reduction and lemon-basil leaves.
A favorite of coffee purists, this mini-chain of cafés has several locations in Brooklyn and Manhattan, plus its own roasting space. Baristas prepare artisanal espresso, alongside a selection of French pastries.
There are several locations of Devoción, but we're partial to the sprawling greenery in its Downtown Brooklyn location. Post up here with one of their coffees before heading to nearby Trader Joe's.
Taking its name from a fashion term popular during the Japanese jazz age, this 11-seat coffeehouse specializes in East-meets-West fare. During the day, the East Village spot serves siphon brews made with varying blends. When the sun sets, sidle up to the wooden counter for Far East beers and sake cocktails.
A favorite coffee shop of our colleagues in Chicago, this newish addition to New York's coffee scene is one-to-watch. Run by latte artist Hirsohi Sawada, this Japanese coffeehouse is located inside another by-way-of-Chicago hot spot, Au Cheval.
Nothing makes an early morning bearable quite like a freshly roasted cup of coffee, and it doesn’t get much fresher than what’s percolating at this Carroll Gardens café, which roasts its coffee beans on premises. There's another location now in Manhattan, too.
At this café nestled inside the Africa Center, you’ll find West African-inspired fast-casual offerings worth trying. But Teranga is also a perfect spot for working or a coffee date: strong espresso drinks use single-origin beans directly sourced from Rwanda, Kenya and Ethiopia. Teranga also offers a moringa latte, its West African take on matcha.
Founded in Chicago in 1995, Intelligentsia is one of the country’s oldest and most respected coffee chains. Serving seasonal Direct Trade coffees, the company brews beans with a variety of methods, from single-cup V60 pour-overs to siphon brews. Located inside the stylish lobby of the High Line Hotel, its to-go coffees are perfectly suited for a stroll along the nearby elevated park.
Portland, Oregon's artisan coffee company boasts two NYC locations, serving espresso-based drinks as well as French-press and cold-brew coffees. Pastries are supplied by top-notch vendors like the Doughnut Plant, Ovenly, Lafayette and Milk Bar.
If you're in Ridgewood, the requisite hangout is obviously Topos. The new-and-used book store also functions as one of the neighborhood's best coffee shops. Friendly baristas make drinks for busy on-the-go customers and the many who post up to work all-day. This laid-back, brightly-lit spot is covered with charming details, worth checking out.
Surfing and slang aren’t the only things Australians do better than New Yorkers; they know how to make a killer cup o’ joe. Down Under’s renowned coffee culture has proliferated in the past five years, and no shop eases you into that flat-white phenomenon quite like Bluestone Lane. The charming café chain—which cooks weekend brunch at certain locations—sources Brazilian and Colombian beans for its drip and cold brew.
Roasted in Long Island City and brewed fresh at several locations daily, Birch’s coffee ranges from bright light roasts to chocolatey dark beans. Its smooth cold brew is especially popular among iced coffee addicts. Like to read with your joe? The cafe’s Flatiron location features an extensive lending library.
This coffee bar and roastery serving San Francisco’s famed Blue Bottle Coffee originally opened in Williamsburg, but today caffeine fanatics can sample the company’s shots of espresso and cups of joe—made to order from freshly roasted, mostly organic beans—at several NYC locations.
Aisa Shelley—who owns the local bars Mr. Fong's and Primo’s—opened the magical Oliver Coffee with Lucas Moran. The tiny, easily missed spot is on a quiet Chinatown street. Serving Variety Roasters coffee and a selection of international snacks and indie zines, it's one of the most lovely places in the area for a quick coffee situation.
The team behind the beloved wine bar and restaurant Four Horsemen has expanded next door with a new coffee shop. Pastries are provided by Bushwick bakery L’Imprimerie with coffee from nearby Sey and Cafe Integral. Music will play a big role, with selections curated by Four Horsemen partner and LCD Soundsystem’s frontman, James Murphy.
The beloved Bourke Street Bakery Sydney café that opened in 2004 by Paul Allam and David McGuinness, debuted in NoMad with its first-ever New York expansion. Expect Australian flat whites, served alongside its beloved savory sausage rolls.
At the decade-old Pilar Cuban Eatery’s new Bed-Stuy sister spot, owner-chef Ricardo Barreras rethinks breakfast with underused-in-NYC Cuban ingredients. Drink hard-to-find Cuban coffee among the kitsch of Miami cafés. Make sure to get the pressed-to-order Cuban sandwich, too.
The Awkward Scone, a queer-and-woman-run bakery with a selection of aromatic herbal teas and espresso drinks, opened its doors after a period as pop-up caterers. The Bushwick spot serves carrot-cake donuts, fennel proscuitto pretzels and a slew of other unique treats (including one stand-out rainbow cookie). If you live in the area, this should be your new before-work spot.
This pint-sized French café brings Southern France to Soho, awash in country charm, with reclaimed farmer's tables and vintage colander chandeliers. The nutty chocolate chip cookies are so good, they made the list of Oprah's favorite things: and they're best washed down with a cup of coffee.
Co-founder of the beloved Red Hook bakery Baked, Renato Poliafito, has opened a new concept, this time more Italian-leaning. The pastry menu—pistachio croissants, Sicilian sandwiches and one heck of a pumpkin bread—is best paired with coffee served in ceramics made down the street.