Who doesn’t love coffee? Ok, so Heather isn’t a big fan but I always tell her that she is the exception! In my opinion, coffee is the only way to start the day and not just because of the caffeine rush to give energy. There is something quite relaxing about spending time in a local coffee shop and if you have been following our site over recent years, you will know that we have fallen in love with the coffee shop scene in a number of destinations across the globe. So…on our recent trip to the Big Apple, we figured it was time to start checking out the best coffee in New York City!
Whether you are an espresso connoisseur or simply prefer a traditional black cup of Joe, New York City is a haven waiting to be explored when it comes to the coffee shop scene. Let’s take a look at which coffee shops will give you plenty of caffeine and energy to explore the beautiful metropolis that is New York City!
Best Coffee In New York City
Before going any further, I want to emphasize that this post is NOT the ultimate guide to every coffee shop in New York City. We all know the size of NYC and when it comes to coffee shops, well locals and visitors alike are spoiled for choice. But given that we have experienced some awesome local spots, we figured it was time to put together an eclectic guide to some of our favorites.
Rather than just focusing on our own opinions, we decided to collaborate with some of our friends from across the globe who are sharing their favorite coffee shops in NYC!
Again, to reiterate, this is not an exhaustive list of places where you can find coffee when you next travel to Manhattan or any of the surrounding boroughs. It will however, give you an insight into a few options that you won’t regret visiting should you follow our advice.
Here are the coffee shops that made our list and which we will be covering in more detail, thanks in large to our collaboration with other travel bloggers.
- The Bean
- Gumption Coffee
- Colson Patisserie
- Sweet Moment
- Culture Espresso
- Cha Cha Matcha
- Landmark Diner
- The Grey Dog
- Think Coffee
- Oslo Coffee Roasters
If you are looking for a typical New York City coffee shop that oozes everything there is to love about the Big Apple, look no further than The Bean. With several locations scattered across Manhattan and Brooklyn, The Bean is the perfect place to head to hang out with your friends or enjoy a relaxing coffee before exploring all the iconic NYC attractions.
Exclusive signature drinks that epitomize the creativity of this coffee shop along with a full juice and smoothie bar ensures every visitor to The Bean has something they will enjoy.
One thing worth noting is the crazy naming convention of many of the drinks. But what an amazing marketing tactic because when it comes to grabbing your attention, they certainly work! The featured Acai Bowls have names such as “The Perch”, “The Snail”, and “The Rider” while those interested in the juice bar will contend with the likes of “Energizer”, “Fat Burner”, “Body Cleaner” et al.
While the sound of The Frozen Mona Lisa (espresso, ice and milk) or Nut’Ella’ Fitzgerald sounded pretty appealing, I opted for a caramel latte which was equally delicious.
824 Broadway (corner of E12),
New York, NY 10003
Website: The Bean NYC
With such a diverse coffee scene to be found across the various boroughs in New York City, it made sound crazy that a successful coffee brand all the way from Sydney, Australia has ventured into the city to try and inspire folks to visit. This is exactly what Gumption Coffee has done since recently opening a location in the heart of Industry City, Brooklyn.
While taking a Brooklyn walking tour with New York Urban Adventures, we stumbled across this awesome, trendy coffee shop. The industrial vibe of the area epitomizes the style of Gumption Coffee but what really makes this coffeehouse stand out from their competitors is the intricacy and precision of the baristas brewing the perfect blend.
They understand that coffee is an art and when you taste coffee at Gumption, you can be sure that this has been perfectly manicured.
But even great coffee can be made better. (gumption coffee)
Trust me when I say, you can 100% tell the difference! I don’t generally like black coffee without any milk/cream but at Gumption, I actually enjoyed it. When you hear the philosophy of the owners is always seeking continuous improvement, you know you have found the perfect coffee shop…
168 39th S,
Brooklyn, NY 11232
Let’s continue the theme of internationally inspired coffee shops that are leaving their mark on the New York City scene. If you have traveled to Belgium, you will know that their patisseries offering a selection of delicious pastries are to die for.
Our goal is to make every day a little sweeter and more delicious. (Colson Patisserie)
Well, thanks to Colson Patisserie, you no longer have to travel all the way Belgium as there is now an awesome spot in the heart of Brooklyn. Located in Industry City, Colson Patisserie is the perfect place to grab your favorite pastry while enjoying a latte, chai or even a decadent hot chocolate.
Regardless of whether you possess a sweet tooth, you cannot help but fall in love with the pastry offerings at Colson Patisserie. The signature Hubert the teddy bear financier cookie is undoubtedly the most popular choice among locals and visitors alike but honestly, you cannot go wrong with anything on this menu.
253 36th St,
Brooklyn, NY 11232
Website: Colson Patisserie
If you’re in search of the best latte art in the city, Sweet Moment in Little Italy is a haven for caffeine-fueled Instagrammers. With drinks and desserts as tasty as they are pretty, people come here for their cutesy colored beverages they call “creamart” and towering Bingsoos (shaved ice) creations although they do have more traditional coffee and café items like avocado toast and waffles for the breakfast purists.
For their signature drink series, you choose a base of milk tea or cold brew that is then topped with chocolate, matcha, red velvet, taro, or Thai cream and wait patiently to see what character they come up with. Swarming with photo-happy social media lovers, it’s not the best place to work or hang so snag a photo and be on your merry way.
106 Mott St,
New York, NY 10013
Website: Sweet Moment
Thanks to Lauren Monitz from TheDownLo for sharing her thoughts on why Sweet Moment is her favorite spot in New York City.
Yorkafe is a cute little coffee shop on 83rd street close to York Avenue on the Upper East Side. They make the best coffee especially the latte and cappuccinos. The sandwiches and pastries are freshly baked, tasty and reasonably priced. Their bagels are out of this world and perfect for a lazy Sunday morning. I especially like getting a couple of paninis and heading down to the beautiful Carl Schurz Park for a mini-picnic.
The coffee shop is owned by a Salvadorian family and the staff couldn’t be nicer. There is such a good vibe in this cozy little piece of our Upper East Side neighborhood.
501 1/2 E 83rd St,
New York, NY 10028
Thanks to Talek Nantes from Travels With Talek for sharing his thoughts why Yorkafe is one of the best coffee shops in NYC.
In an area of the city that can be harder than most to find something to eat or drink that is not a chain, Culture Espresso is a rare gem. There are two locations in the Midtown area, one near Bryant Park and one near the 34th Street ACE stop on 36th Street.
The location near Bryant Park is best for picking up a coffee to go (and take it to the park if it is a nice day!) as it is a small and busy spot. The 36th Street location is bigger and great for a respite from a day of walking. Both locations have great drip coffee and espresso drinks.
The coffee is from Heart Coffee Roasters in Portland OR and they both serve the BEST chocolate chip cookies, they are often fresh from the oven and so so delicious.
247 W 36th St,
New York, NY 10018
Website: Culture Espresso
Thanks to Candiss from Lost Not Found for sharing her reasons why Culture Espresso is one of the best spots to enjoy coffee while visiting New York City.
Cha Cha Matcha
Are you dreaming of a trip to Japan without the expensive airline ticket? Don’t worry and take a trip to Cha Cha Matcha instead!
This trendy but friendly cafe specializes in making the signature Japanese drink, matcha, with a New York twist. In fact, the owners are so committed to perfecting their craft that they travel to Japan themselves to source the smoothest ceremonial grade matcha they can find!
My favorite drink is the Coconut Matcha Latte, which has the perfect amount of sweet toasted coconut and smooth flavor, although you can’t go wrong here. The cafe also offers a seasonal menu (try the Pink Drink!) and light snacks like soft serve ice cream, croissants, dossants (doughnut croissants), banana bread, and more.
Whether you want to try a healthier coffee or just hang out with friends after a long day of work, Cha Cha Matcha has you covered.
373 Broome Street,
New York, NY 10013
Website: Cha Cha Matcha
Thanks to Luda from Adventures With Luda for sharing her thoughts on why this Japanese inspired coffee shop will satisfy all your caffeine needs.
One of the last original family-owned diners in Manhattan. The Landmark Diner has been operating since 1962 and has retained the old-school diner menu, bottomless coffee and bargain basement prices.
The food comes thick and fast with fluffy pancakes, delicious omelettes and traditional diner fare on their more than extensive menu. The coffee is of the filtered variety so don’t come looking for any single-origin style lattes. Instead, enjoy the comforting taste of home as the waitress ensures your cup is never empty.
The service is fast and efficient and tables turn over quickly if they are busy. But it is likely you will get a table or even a booth that you can spend a while in. On the edge of SoHo this is a rare find in an area that is becoming quickly gentrified.
158 Grand Street,
New York, NY 10013
Website: Landmark Diner
Thanks to Warren from Sling Adventures for sharing his thoughts on why Landmark Diner, one of the last original diners in NYC, should be on your radar when exploring SoHo.
Located in the East Village, Hi-Collar is a traditional Japanese coffee and tea house by day and sake bar during the evenings. The bar is narrow and deep with a row of stools and shelves decorated with lovely glasses and vessels.
During the daytime, the bar offers various preparation and types of coffee. You can choose from pour over, AeroPress and Siphon but also Japanese Iced coffee. They offer some Japanese-American breakfast options, light lunch fare, usually including some sandwiches, a pasta dish or two and a small selection of desserts.
At night, Hi-Collar flips itself over to interesting dishes, such as rice bowls, appetizers and with regards to beverages, the bar is primarily known for sake. It is a place where you can spend your night with friends sampling different tastes of sake.
214 E 10th St,
New York, NY 10003
Thanks to Leo from Safari Nomad for highlighting why Hi-Collar should be on your radar during your next visit to NYC!
The Grey Dog
The Grey Dog has several branches around town and they have a hip, laid-back atmosphere. There are often lines, but a host will approach you while you are waiting, point out a table that is for you and put a bandana on the table to show that it is taken. So, you have somewhere to sit as soon as you get to the counter.
You order at the front and get drinks served to you there, but if you order food, it is brought to your table. Cutlery and condiments are all on a side dresser for you get yourself. The coffee is good and has free refills – a rarity in NYC – and the food is simple, tasty and the servings are big.
The staff are all young, friendly and wear hats. I’m not sure why. The headwear varies from beanies to fedoras, but they all wear it. The Grey Dog has a relaxed downtown vibe perfect for coffee, brunch or a casual lunch.
244 Mulberry St,
New York, NY 10012
Website: The Grey Dog
Thanks to James from Travel Collecting for highlighting a few reasons why The Grey Dog is a place you need to experience during your next visit to NYC.
As I was making my way by foot – the best way to see New York City in my opinion – from Penn Station to the Highline, I was thinking I could desperately go for a good cup of coffee.
New York City delivered as it always does when I stumbled across Think Coffee in the meatpacking district. The first thing that caught my eye was their sign saying that their coffee empowers young women in Ethiopia. Nearly every purchase supports projects like housing reconstruction in Colombia, feminine hygiene in Ethiopia, or clean water access in Nicaragua.
Think Coffee is a local NYC chain with ten locations throughout the different neighborhoods (and they have several locations in Korea). This location is very large and has an amazing vibe making it perfect for setting up shop and getting some work done. They have plenty of food and drink options, including several plant-based milks.
500 W 30th St,
New York, NY 10001
Website: Think Coffee
Thanks to Ashley from Wild Hearted for sharing her experiences at Think Coffee and why we should all be inspired to visit a coffee shop that is so focused on empowering young women around the world.
Oslo Coffee Roasters
There are a lot of good coffee shops in New York, but they don’t all serve great coffee. That’s not the case at Oslo Coffee Roasters. Here, the coffee is the attraction.
They start with premium beans from farmers who use ecologically and socially sustainable practices, roasted on site in small batches. Up front, they brew well-balanced espresso drinks and brewed coffees, teas (including Chai), and single-origin cold-brews. Pastries come from Roberta’s in Brooklyn.
Oslo celebrated their 15th year by opening a second Manhattan shop in 2018, to go along with two Brooklyn locations. We visited the original, on Roebling Street in Williamsburg. It’s a great coffee stop while exploring Brooklyn, but not the best place to get work done.
The owners keep it “old school” to encourage the social aspect of having coffee; no wi-fi, no plugs. At Oslo, you can focus on what’s important: coffee and friends.
133 Roebling St,
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Website: Oslo Coffee
Thanks to Rob and Ann from TraveLatte (appropriate for this post) for sharing their opinions as to why Oslo Coffee in Brooklyn offers some of the best coffee in NYC!
It’s no surprise that there are a plethora of amazing coffee shops to be found in New York City. Whether you are in downtown Manhattan, nearby Brooklyn or any of the other NYC boroughs, you can be sure that there is an awesome coffee shop just around the corner.
We have been fortunate to visit a couple of these and we would also like to take a moment to thank all of our amazing contributors for helping create this list of recommended spots worth visiting.
Please share your favorite NYC coffee shops in the comments below and let us know why we should include them the next time we take a trip to this amazing city.