The beautiful Andalusian capital of Seville has developed a dynamic café scene over recent years. Here, Culture Trip recommends the best cafeterías in the city, where you can find everything from Colombia’s finest coffee and decadent milkshakes to craft beer and sweet treats.
It used to be the case that there was little variety in the cafés of Seville; usually, there were two types of coffee on offer in the traditional cafeterías: con leche (with milk) or solo (a short, black espresso). Infusion tea or cappuccino? Forget it. In recent years, though, the city has developed a lively café scene, with establishments offering greater choice and quality as well as vibrant spaces in which to work or socialise.
Cafe, Restaurant, Sandwich Shop, Spanish
Firmly established on the Andalusian capital’s café scene is trendy La Cacharreria, located up the street from a giant wooden monument known as Las Setas (The Mushrooms, after its distinctive wavy shape). The café’s decor features exposed brickwork and colourfully chalked menus, making it more reminiscent of Shoreditch or Soho than traditional Seville. There’s a good selection of coffees, teas, juices and sweets, with the carrot cake singled out for praise. The interior is small, and there are usually just a couple of tables outside for people-watching. Bear in mind that cards aren’t accepted.
Arguably one of the best-appointed cafés in Seville, Torch Coffee Roasters sits on the city’s riverbank, just by the Torre del Oro (Gold Tower), one of the city’s most famous structures. The founder, Samuel Gurel, helped transform a coffee farm in Guatemala before heading to Andalusia to open this cheerful, light-filled space. It’s clearly for people serious about their coffee as it offers varieties from all over the world – with some of the tastiest hailing from Ethiopia and Brazil. If you have a favourite, you can buy a packet to take home, too. Prices here are a little higher than other cafés in the centre, but it’s worth every cent.
La Crème de la Crème lies close to Las Setas, from the top of which you can enjoy wonderful views at sunset. The pet-friendly hang-out (not something you often find in Seville) is known for its cakes and pastries, so it’s a popular venue for birthdays among Sevillanos. As the name suggests, a French theme dominates the menu – think sweet and savoury crêpes, a fantastic croque monsieur, stuffed croissants and home-made quiches. La Crème de la Crème is also a good spot for an early-evening cocktail.
Found just outside the walls of Seville’s stunning Alcázar, this is the place to go for iced coffee – which, in Spain, often consists of espresso with an ice cube chucked in. Jester also does some of the best smoothies and milkshakes in the centre, as well as healthy breakfasts, with the mixed cereal, fruit and yoghurt bowls especially popular. Almond, soy and coconut milks are available – options that are rarely on offer in the city’s more traditional cafés. It’s not the place to head if you’re in a hurry, with just a few tables serviced by one waiter or waitress, but the service is super friendly.
Seville’s branch of Parcería Café (there are others in Guatemala, Colombia and Honduras) is situated just off Calle Feria, where a huge flea market takes place every Thursday morning. Everything on the menu here is organic and home-made, in line with the Colombian owners’ belief that they have a “social, environmental and economic responsibility” in running their café. Customers love the natural breakfasts, with options such as home-made hummus, tomato and walnuts on fig bread providing refreshing alternatives to tostadas or churros. Craft beers are also available.
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Situated on the same street as La Cacharreria, Virgin Coffee became the Andalusian capital’s first speciality coffee shop when it opened in 2015, offering high-quality beans that are blended and roasted on-site (meaning the place always smells amazing). Run by coffee aficionado Pedro, it has maintained a faultless reputation ever since, with many residents saying Virgin does the best cup of coffee in Seville. Pedro is often at the coffee machine himself and happy to talk you through the different blends and beans. It’s a tiny space, so you may have to wait a few minutes for a seat.
Lalita Café lies near Sevilla FC’s football stadium in a residential barrio, about a 20-minute walk from the historical centre. It’s known for its superb home-made treats, especially the banana and chocolate cake, carrot cheesecake and palmeras (chocolate-covered pastries), and is just as popular for breakfast as it is for merienda, the Spanish equivalent of afternoon tea that’s usually taken at around 5pm. As always with Seville’s cafés, space is limited in the clean, modern interior, so expect a voluble atmosphere from customers enjoying a coffee and catch-up.
Piola is situated on the Alameda de Hércules, a square that has become one of Seville’s most lively areas for tapas and drinks. In a hipsterish interior, you can enjoy a legendary cappuccino or a café y tostada con jamon (coffee with toast and ham) for under €4 (£3.40). The minimum card payment is €5 (£4.20), and it’s autoservicio, meaning you place your order at the bar and the staff call out your name when it’s ready. Later in the day, Piola becomes a popular spot among the younger crowd for tapas and copas, morphing into a grungy bar after sundown (it’s open until 2am every day of the week).
Also located on the Alameda de Hércules is the bohemian, studenty hang-out El Viajero Sedentario – the perfect café for bookworms in Seville. With colourful shelves packed with volumes on everything from history to literature, it’s a chilled environment in which to work on your laptop with a cappuccino or play board games with your friends over beer or wines. The café specialises in sweet treats, with a delicious range of home-made tarts and cakes to choose from (don’t leave without sampling the carrot cake). There’s also a decent selection of infusion teas on offer if you fancy a change from coffee.