Hello, dear friends. I am in New York and you know that I have already spent waaaayyy to much money on coffee. But it’s all been research for this article, so it’s justified. I have a world-wide coffee shop bucket list and a lot of the shops are in NYC, so it’s been nice to check them off the list. There are also a few that weren’t already on my list but do deserve some recognition. Below, I’m including my favorite coffee shops in NYC.
I’ve selected these coffee shops based on ambiance, coffee quality, staff friendliness, location, and overall awesomeness. Should you find yourself in The Big Apple anytime soon, and you’d like to pay a Brooklyn hipster $8 to paint a leaf in the foam of your latte, check out this list to find a place near you!
El Rey Coffee Bar
Very relaxed, El Rey is the East Village’s crown jewel of coffee. The morning is hectic, with everyone trying to get their cup of joe in before the workday. But you can often find a low time between noon and 3 pm. I like to sit at the front window and watch people walk by. I try to imagine what people’s name would be or what kind of life they lead as I sip my cold brew.
Location: 100 Stanton St, New York, NY 10002
What To Order: Mexican Ice Mocha on draft or the Counter Culture black coffee
You will most likely not be able to seat here, as there are only eleven seats. Still, they do coffee to go and it is better than nothing. Hi-Collar is a Japanese cafe, with high-end food and coffee that will be served with a smile. Lucky for me, it is only five minutes walk from my Airbnb in East Village.
Location: 214 E 10th St, New York, NY 10003
What To Order: Siphon Brewed Coffee or Katsu Pork Sandwiches
Abraço is particularly enthralling for me because it places a lot of influence on international coffee. It primarily serves traditional coffee from Italy, the Middle East, and Spain. Their savory snacks (such as olive-oil cake) and baked goods (such as a peach pie) are what bring the guests back. Note that this is a laptop-free establishment.
Location: 81 E 7th St, New York, NY 10003
What To Order: Plain, Whole Milk Latte
Intelligensia Coffee Highline
Intelligensia was founded in Chicago in ’95 and made its way to NYC by popular demand. There are many ways to make the perfect cup of coffee, from pour-overs to siphon brews, and Intelligensia covers every corner. They also have a lovely garden, which is a great place to drink your coffee and read a book.
Location: 180 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011
What To Order: Any of their selections of pour-overs
You may have seen their cold brews in Whole Foods all across this great nation, but it’s nothing compared to what you’ll find in the store. I usually stay away from chains, but they are true to their standards and so I will allow it. My favorite location is the one on 29th because they’re attached to a hotel. There’s a massive room with high ceilings, dark wood panels, big couches, and dim lighting. You can carry your drinks across and if you find a table, it would be a great place to get some work done and feel like Ernest Hemingway.
Location: 4502, 18 W 29th St, New York, NY 10001
What To Order: Nitro Cold Brew
Third Rail Coffee
Believe it or not, this is where I learned how to do latte art. Third Rail has a series on YouTube where they teach you the ins and outs of specialty coffee. The location is perfect, it’s right by Washington Square Park, so you can get a drink and then go sit by the water fountain and feel like August Rush. It can get pretty busy, but it’s definitely worth the wait. Be warned, you will probably not find seating and it is cash only.
Location: 159 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003
What To Order: Flat White
There you have it! I know it is hard to believe, but I have been to every one of these and more in the past five days. As always, if you visit any of these places, make sure to tag me in your photos!