Puerto Rico has been enjoying coffee for centuries, and there are numerous plantations across the island where coffee is still produced. There are a multitude of places to satisfy your coffee cravings when walking around Old San Juan. Check out our choice of the coffee shops you can’t miss – a cup of coffee will never be the same.
Café Puerto Rico
Restaurant, Caribbean, $$$
Café Puerto Rico is a coffee shop–bistro on the Plaza de Colón, with arched entryways, table and bar seating, and a well-stocked bar. There’s live music and a terraced area. In addition to coffee, the menu offers vegetarian options, seafood, and soups and salads.
On the Calle San Francisco, very close to the Plaza de Colón, is Caficultura, a coffee shop serving breakfast and brunch, with delicious vegetarian and gluten-free offerings, and, of course, coffee. Caficultura comes highly recommended by its customers on social media.
All of the coffee used at Café Don Ruiz has been made by the same family for four generations in Yauco in southern Puerto Rico, and is produced using eco-friendly techniques. The cafe is located inside the historic Cuartel de Ballajá (Ballajá Barracks), just in front of El Morro Castle. In addition to the café, there is a Don Ruiz roasting facility and museum on site. Café Don Ruiz comes highly recommended on social media; it’s the #1 place for coffee and tea in San Juan on TripAdvisor. Coffee lovers can shop at the online store, too.
Chocolate Cortés is a family business founded by Pedro Cortes Forteza in 1929. The brand is very popular in their native Dominican Republic, and their products are also sold in Puerto Rico and internationally. Casa Cortés Chocobar in Old San Juan is on the first floor of the Casa Cortés. In addition to coffee and chocolate products, drinks and pastries, patrons can buy art at the establishment.
Near to the water, with a close-up view of San Juan Bay and the cruise ships docking nearby, Café Cola’o in Old San Juan has an enviable location, one of the factors that makes it a topnotch place for a coffee. Founder Erica Reyes is the daughter of coffee growers, so it runs in the family. All of the coffee sold is from Puerto Rico: Utuado, Ponce, Adjuntas and Maricao. As well as buying local coffee, visitors can take lessons from a barista and rent coffee stations.
Right next to the Plaza de Armas where the historic Casa Alcaldía (City Hall) is located, the Café Poetico offers a variety of coffee drinks in a casual setting. It’s easily accessible during a walk through the center of Old San Juan. A good place to read, sit and work at a computer, patrons can unwind and relax at this cafe.
The coffee at this lovely boutique is from the coffee Hacienda Isabel in Utuado, Puerto Rico, towards the center of the island. The hacienda is named after its owner Isabel Torres and dates back to the 19th century. Before setting up the coffeehouse, reminiscent of a Puerto Rican hacienda, Torres created a number of mobile coffee stores. You can take some of this coffee home with you, as Hacienda Isabel coffee can be purchased online.
The coffee at Cuatro Sombras is from an hacienda in Yauco, Puerto Rico. A trendy coffee house located not far from the Paseo de la Princesa, it serves only Arabica coffee made out of high-quality coffee beans. You can also pick up their products at their online store.
Restaurant, Caribbean, Coffee, Tea , Puerto Rican, Vegetarian, Fast Food, Street Food, $$$
A restaurant with Puerto Rican, international, and vegetarian food, Café Berlin, located on the Plaza de Colón, has something for everyone. Beyond the many coffee options such as espresso and cappuccino, the menu includes omelettes, pancakes and quiche. There’s an attractive veranda, and breakfast is served until 3pm.
Not located in Old San Juan itself, but in the nearby Condado/Santurce area, Pinky’s is a good casual setting for breakfast, brunch and lunch. It’s relatively inexpensive, and both the food and the service are popular.