The Best Coffee Shops in New York City

My favorite coffee spots in NYC – so far

As I’m sure you can imagine, New York City has endless amounts of coffee shops, where some are better than others. Even with the amount of times I’m able to take a trip into the city (I’m super lucky that I don’t live terribly far), I still have so many more places to try. So keep up with my coffee journey here as well as on my instagram.

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If there’s two things you take away from this post:

  1. Instagram aesthetic doesn’t always equal quality coffee
  2. If you ever see “Australian inspired cafe” just automatically assume it’s gonna be incredible

Keep reading to see what I rate these spots out of 10.

Coffee n’ Clothes

Noho – 11 Bond Street

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A pretty popular find on instagram with the way you can pick what designer logo to have sprinkled on top of your coffee. I was a bit worried coming here at first, as just because people post about it for its’ looks doesn’t exactly mean quality.

Nonetheless, the barista was very talented and I would totally go back! It was honestly a really good latte.

Coffee n’ Clothes: 10/10 for quality & aesthetic

Ruby’s Cafe

Soho – 219 Mulberry Street A

Northern Noho – 198 E 11th Street

Kips Bay – 442 3rd Ave

I’ve been a couple times (as they have multiple locations) and both times it was suuuuper packed so definitely plan ahead for that!! It is more of a sit down place over takeaway but the food is simple and on point.

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I was so impressed by the hospitality of the staff and how QUICK everything comes out. This is an Australian owned and inspired cafe and it sure shows, in the best way! Australian & Kiwi cafes BLOW MY MIND with how quickly their food comes out and at no cost to the quality.

The first time I went with my brother the server clearly had an Australian accent and she was the sweetest and cared to start a conversation with us. It’s the little things guys.

Ruby’s Cafe: 10/10 for great avocado toast, coffee and quality. The ultimate trio.

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Bluestone Lane

*too many locations to list but you get the gist*

The only real “chain” I’ll mention; it’s also Australian owned and inspired (are you sensing a theme here). With the times I’ve gone here I am always pleasantly surprised with the care their baristas take.

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This spot is really good if you’re in a pinch and haven’t really heard of any other coffee shops around.

Bluestone Lane: 8.5 for consistency and quality

Kaigo Coffee Room

Soho – 120 C Lafayette Street

Brooklyn Heights – 139 Bridge Park Drive

The barista really nailed the micro-foam and as you can guess that is super super important to me. I really appreciate milk frothed to be really light but not too airy – the perfect balance. I definitely want to go back here as it’s been too long.

Kaigo Coffee Room: 9.5 for care & precision

Partners Coffee

Greenpoint – 125 N 6th Street

Greenwich Village – 44 Charles Street

Koreatown – 160 5th Ave

Midtown – 81 E 45th Street

This is one of the few spots in Brooklyn that I’ve been able to try. Not only are they a more well known roaster, they also kill it in the cafe scene; I couldn’t even get a table when I went. This would be the perfect spot to go to if I had some computer work to get done.

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Partners Coffee: 10/10 for quality and atmosphere

Hutch & Waldo

Upper East Side – 247 E 81st Street

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Yet again, another Australian owned & inspired cafe!!! This spot was an even mix between takeaway and sit-down. It’s a pretty small place but there was outdoor seating too (and lots of cute pups)! This is a good solid option if you’re in the upper east side looking for a good stop. It’s not too far from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Hutch & Waldo: 9/10, its a good spot but not as good as Ruby’s Cafe in my opinion.

Saltwater Coffee

East Village – 345 E 12th Street

West Village – 126 Waverly Place

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Okay guys, I’m laughing at myself. I don’t mean for this post to turn into all Australian inspired cafes but those Ozzies genuinely slay the rest of the world with their coffee culture.

Saltwater honestly was incredible. It’s a small spot with minimal seating but it’s so bright and welcoming that all is good in the world. Barista’s slayed the micro-foam. Any coffee spot with a flat white on the menu usually is a good sign of quality baristas (as a lot of people don’t know, or care to know what a flat white is).

According to google, “A flat white is a coffee drink consisting of espresso with micro-foam (steamed milk with small, fine bubbles and a glossy or velvety consistency).”

Saltwater Coffee: 10.5/10 for quality, care, incredibleness (is that a word?) & aesthetic

Paper Coffee

Koreatown – 44 West 29th Street

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It’s the ultimate mid-town stop. Great coffee right in the center of a lot. My friends were even amazed by their chocolate chip cookies; so if a nice gooey, warm chocolate chip cookie paired with insanely good coffee is your vibe then this place is made for you.

Paper Coffee: 9.5/10 for convenience and quality

Remi Flower & Coffee

Midtown – 906 2nd Ave

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I guess the best way to sum this spot up is it’s a flower shop first and a coffee shop second. Their coffee was good but in my opinion I felt this place is really only popular because of the instagram aesthetics and stunning flowers. I would still recommend to give this place a visit, but it’s out of the way from a lot.

Remi Flower & Coffee: 8/10 mostly for aesthetic. The coffee was good but in a place like NYC you need to be incredible or it just doesn’t cut it for me. Also it could have been an off day for the barista so I wanted to make sure to mention this place regardless. I definitely will go back to give it another shot.

Have you explored New York City?

What are your top NYC coffee spots?

If you’re on the look-out for more coffee content head over to my instagram or check out some similar posts I’ve done:

A guide to Portland, Oregon’s coffee scene

The 3 things I look for when choosing a coffee shop to spend my money at

5 things you NEED to make the best coffee at home

Thanks so much if you’ve read this far. I appreciate it so much.

Lots of love,

foot

Top 3 things I look for when choosing a coffee shop

Quality coffee is important to me. Also, I don’t want to waste my money on bad, burnt, and watery coffee.

We all know that coffee can get expensive too so here are some of the things I really look at before choosing where to spend my money and give my time. I especially look for all of these things when traveling.

Before I get into it, I have posted a lot about my favorite places on my instagram.

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If I had to pick one thing I always always do and make of is this first thing.

  1. Their social media presence (especially instagram)!! I know theres the whole thing about not judging a book by its cover but seriously, think about it: if you go on a coffee shop’s instagram and you see they are being tagged in a lot of photos… what does that tell you? and most importantly, if you see lots of photos of latte art… what does that tell you?

It sure tells me that:

  1. Customers find their experience good enough to post about.
  2. Their baristas are well trained if they are able to get the perfect micro-foam with espresso-based beverages. If I see a lot of photos showcasing the barista’s talent & precision, I find that very appealing. I typically do not go for cafes where every coffee drink is hidden in whipped cream and syrup.

Once looking at a cafe’s aesthetic visually, I usually will then see if they have a website to look at a menu.

2. Their menu!! I know not every cafe has a menu posted, and not that it is a necessary thing either. But again, it helps me get a feel for how the shop views quality. If the menu is filled with lots of sugary syrups and other fillers to hide the quality of the coffee, I am most likely not interested. UNLESS it seems that they make their own syrups or use more natural sweeteners for their drinks.

This is a huge thing to get a feel of a cafe once you first walk into it too. What’s their menu like? What care do they put into creating their menu?

This last thing is more geared towards once you get to the cafe.

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3. The overall experience you get when walking in!! What is the vibe you’re getting? What kind of tools are behind the counter to ensure quality? If a barista is making coffee, what are they doing? what sounds do you hear when they are frothing milk for an espresso? does it sound like a dying cat, or does it sound like a smooth hum?

I think of these things once I enter a cafe. Even if they had a great social media and online presence, if I walk in and I see, feel or hear things that don’t give me a good feeling I will save my money and go somewhere else 🙂

I just wanted to mention that this post is inspired by one I saw last week. I really enjoyed reading it so here’s my take on the topic.

Do you guys look at a shop’s social media before going? Is that important to you?

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Thanks for reading. I’m hoping to post a lot more coffee guides like this one of cities and other places I’ve travelled around to.

Let me know what you think!

Lots of love,

foot

a guide to Portland, Oregon’s coffee scene

This past February (before everything escalated) I met my boyfriend on the west coast of the states and explored SFO, SEA and PDX. Out of the three, I definitely was most impressed with Portland’s coffee scene. There was so much character my heart was so full. Here’s my highlight reel:

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Stop One: Deadstock Coffee

Such a cool vibe here, and obviously any coffee shop with a mural has a gold star in my book. Talented baristas and welcoming staff. A super bright space not far from Chinatown. Kind of felt like I was entering into a footlocker/michael-jordan-basketball-kind-of-vibe.

My rating: 7/10

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Stop Two: Heart Coffee Roasters

They have a couple locations but this one was super convenient to get to in center city. It genuinely took everything in my not to buy all those cute mugs. Here was a big hotspot for getting work done (one of the true giveaways of how good the coffee shop is).

Again, super talented baristas and a super bright, light space. I talked a bit more about here in an instagram post here.

My rating: 8/10

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Stop Three: Upper Left Roasters

If theres one thing I found the most interesting about this city is how many coffee shops and cute cafes are attached to hotels or office buildings. It makes some of them harder to find but worth the hunt. There wasn’t really any seating (aimed for more on the go, office runs) but still a treasure find.

Not my favorite oat milk latte I found, but that doesn’t demean the quality of their coffee.

My rating: 6.5/10

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Stop Four: Drip PDX

THIS DECOR THO!!!! Another spot hidden in a campus of office buildings (like really hidden)! Such a sweet group of staff. They very recently just opened up and I was so happy to make the trip. It’s not far off from center city.  Although it was in an office building there still was a lot of room for seating and pretty quiet too. I could see myself getting a lot of work done just hanging out here.

Show those newer startups some extra love!!!

My rating: 8.5/10

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Stop Five: Good Coffee

Let me just say that when you walk into a cafe and there is two photoshoots simultaneously happening that’s when you know it’s a cute ass spot; I can confirm it was. Lots of comfy couches, seats, and tables really filling up the space.

This spot was attached to a fancy hotel and would definitely come back here if I had the chance.

My rating: 8/10

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Stop Six: Never Lab Coffee

the finale

the “save the best for last”

Genuinely was so impressed with Never Coffee that I recently ordered some of their coffee to brew at home during quarantine. Just LOOK at how bright and stunning their space is. The plants and the little cactus make me so happy. Coffee and plants are the best combo. Okay this is a rant but you catch my drift: I really really loved it here. 

I have made multiple posts on my instagram about their coffee but I was really impressed with their specialty lattes and drink options. I tried the combo they called “Oregon” and was really into it: not too sweet or heavy. The staff was the most open and welcoming that I encountered on my trip. 

If you ever go to Portland you have to come here. That’s that.

My rating: honestly, 10/10

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Have you ever been to Portland, Oregon?

What did you think of it?

Lots of love,

foot
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