Quality is guaranteed here at Café Corazón. Their take on an iced café con leche was chosen as one of the seven best milk-based recipes in California for a Got Milk? campaign, and their beans – procured from organic and free trade farmers from across the world – are roasted fresh each day. Leo Rios opened Café Corazón in 2006 and it has since become one of the most popular coffee spots in Fresno, thanks in part to the owner’s community engagement. Rios also insists on brewing every cup to order, using only the finest ingredients.
Opening hours: Mon-Fri: 7am-6pm, Sat: 8am-3pm
Watch out for: Their Mexican Diablo, made with a dash of cayenne pepper
Address & telephone number: 1306 N Wishon Ave, Fresno, CA, +1 559-492-7047
Café Van Ness
Café Van Ness has a charming location within Gazebo Gardens, so there’s always plenty of greenery to look at if you can get yourself a window seat or a place on the patio. Make sure to grab one of their specialty drinks, each one named after one of Fresno’s streets: the Simpson is a blend of Aztec chocolate and blood orange, while the Michigan has white chocolate and Irish cream. They also serve fresh sandwiches and salads plus pastries, muffins, fritters, and doughnuts for those with a sweet tooth.
Address & telephone number: 3204 N Van Ness Blvd, Fresno, CA, +1 559-393-0260
The Little Bean Café
Using coffee beans from highly regarded California roasters Verve, the baristas at The Little Bean Café serve up some of the best pour-over coffee in Fresno. The cafe is located on the pedestrianized Fulton Mall in downtown Fresno, making it a perfect place to people-watch while sipping an espresso or macchiato. Occupying part of the city’s historic Helm Building lends Little Bean a touch of class, and for the true coffee connoisseur they sell coffee made from rare beans for upwards of $10 a cup. But don’t fret if you’re on a budget, you can grab their house coffee for just a dollar during the midday Happy Hour.
Address & telephone number: 1101 Fulton Mall, Fresno, CA, +1 559-708-4555
Mia Cuppa Caffe’
The family-owned Mia Cuppa Caffe’ is a favorite among Fresno’s Tower District clientele, and Mark and Wendy DeRaud like to return the favor by sourcing their produce from Fresno businesses. Their coffee comes from the local Lanna Coffee Company, their bagels from Uncle Harry’s, and their loose-leaf teas from Raizana. Mia Cuppa is something of a cultural hot spot: it hosts open mic nights on Mondays, has collaborated with the city’s Art Hop program, and has a performance space in the back of the cafe for artists, musicians, and other creative types to meet and share their work. Don’t leave without trying their Mexican Mocha.
Address & telephone number: 620 E Olive Ave, Fresno, CA, +1 559-499-1844
Cornerstone Coffee Company
The Cornerstone Coffee Company is a unique venture in Fresno, funneling all of its profits into the faith-based Light-House Recovery Program, which aims to rehabilitate women who have struggled with substance abuse and the cafe is staffed mostly by those enrolled on the program. Their Sicilian blend coffee comes from Modesto roasters Milone Bros, and their pastries from Firehouse in nearby Clovis. The spacious shop floor, plush leather sofas, and floor-to-ceiling windows make Cornerstone an enjoyable spot for a latte.
Address & telephone number: 1463 Fulton St, Fresno, CA, +1 559-222-4824