AdviceCoffeeNew York

Maybe The 5 Best Cups of Coffee in NYC

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Coffee. In New York, it may as well be served in an IV bag. We love it, we crave it, we live it. We need it, honestly, and thankfully there are plenty of coffee shops willing to give us our fix. But how do we tell the legitimate coffee craftsmen apart from the posers? For every delicious cup of coffee that’s in NYC, there are five terrible ones.  Sure, you already know to avoid 7-Eleven’s New York Bold Roast, but here are the places you should actively seek out for a delicious cup of joe.

Best Flavored Latte: 19 Cafe
84 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn

Matcha Latte with 100% Organic, creamy Matcha

Matcha Latte with 100% Organic, creamy Matcha

This hole-in-the-wall café in East Williamsburg can serve you a coffee, a kimchi fried rice, and a cookie the size of your face all in one sitting. (Though depending on your appetite, that might be enough to feed you for a week.) Though the menu is a hybrid of NYC staples, their flavored lattes stand out for being utterly delicious.  In the autumn, try their pumpkin pie latte – it surpasses any PSL you’ve ever had and the fact that it’s from Williamsburg keeps you from being basic. (Although typing out that sentence didn’t save me.)


Best STRONG Coffee: Kahve
774 9th Avenue, Manhattan

zebra coffee

Zebra mocha. @Kahve

It’s hot in Hell’s Kitchen and the coffee is even hotter. (But not McDonald’s lawsuit hot.)  The brews from Kahve are incredibly strong so this coffee isn’t for the faint of heart. If you need a powerful coffee aroma to punch you awake in the morning – like literally punch-you-in-the-face strong – get your coffee here.


Best Iced Coffee: Birch Coffee
21 East 27th Street, Manhattan
iced coffee

There are a handful of Birch Coffee locations in NYC, but their Flatiron location (the address is listed above) is one of our favorites. Their delicious iced coffee is exactly what you want on a summer day – and the brand’s promise to make giving you coffee the best and easiest part of your day is what seals the deal.   Though it’s probably a problem if getting the coffee is too easy… like, we don’t want to just find it on the side of the road.


Best Drip Coffee: Variety Coffee Roasters
368 Graham Avenue, Brooklyn
variety coffee roaster

Bushwick is quickly becoming popular for many things – bad hipster trends, a love for dated technology and its micro coffee shop scene.  Variety Coffee Roasters stands out for its delicious drip coffee, its entertaining people-watching and of course – its insta worthy company label.  Have fun taking a picture of it with celluloid!

Best Coffee Beans: Stumptown Coffee Roasters
30 West 8th Street, Manhattan

Despite having only two physical locations in NYC, Stumptown has a larger footprint than you might have otherwise imagined.   You can head to Stumptown’s Greenwich Village location to buy their beans in bulk – which you should of course do – but Stumptown Coffee is also sold in many smaller cafes across NYC. It’s worth noting that it’s also available in cities across the country, but other cities are gross and NYC is better.

For the Best Espresso: Everyman Espresso
136 East 13th Street, Manhattan

expresso everyman

Everyman Expresso: Cortado with lavendar glazed donut. Photo Yelp

Leave it to college students to keep an espresso shot alive. (Goodness knows they need all the energy to rave/study/party that they can get.) Though the espresso bar has a few locations in NYC, their East Village location is their first – which automatically makes it the best. Everyman was voted the best coffee shop in the nation by The Daily Meal, and their carefully sourced coffee beans mean business.

And, in traditional New Yorker fashion, here are the cups of coffee you need to stay the hell away from. Because if there’s one kind of person you can trust to complain about something, it’s a millennial New Yorker.

For the Worst Faux New Yorker: 7-Eleven 

This pathetic excuse for a cup of coffee uses a roast called “New York Bold,” which tastes neither bold nor from New York. With this coffee, 7-Eleven is the fast food equivalent of your preteen cousin who visits NYC from Ohio. All they know is Times Square, they refuse to leave that two-block radius and they think that anyone who does so is like a super doo-doo head.

For the Birds: Dancing Crane Cafe

This cafe is located in the plaza of shops within the Central Park Zoo and it’s a good showcase of how one person can’t be good at everything. Like, maybe you should focus on cleaning up animal crap instead of putting into a cup of coffee? Just a thought.

For the Person Who Knows It’s Not Truly Worth It: Nespresso Boutique 

Here’s the thing. I”m not opposed to paying too much for coffee if it’s actually worth it. But if you, Nespresso Salesman, are telling me that this “hand-crafted “espresso” that comes from a machine that you are literally making in front of me right now is “worth” more than $5? No thanks.

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Alexandra Wilson

Alexandra Wilson

Boston-bred but Brooklyn-based, Alex has been writing for years and her work has been seen throughout many national publications, including USA Today, Brit+Co, and Elite Daily. In her spare time, Alex can be found exploring new neighborhoods, waiting in line for the newest food trend, and planning her next NYC escape. She someday hopes to travel to all seven continents - yes, including Antarctica.