Atlanta has a lot of enticing aspects, but the morning (and afternoon, and evening) traffic certainly is not one of its attractive features. In order to beat the morning rush, grab a cup of coffee at one of these local coffeehouses. Here is our guide to the 10 best coffeehouses in Atlanta.
Located just east of downtown, Condesa charms patrons with not only its lattes and cappuccinos, but also its plethora of tea choices. Condesa prides itself on attentiveness to detail. Just take a look at the baristas, outfitted in stylish garb (complete with pattern bowties, crisp oxford dress shirts, and buttoned vests) and you’re sure to be impressed. The food menu is filled with small pastries and classic breakfast picks such as parfait and cinnamon oatmeal.
This versatile and hugely successful coffee shop has three locations in Atlanta. Each is unique in its own way, but its Grant Park location is perhaps the most interesting: the loft-inspired architecture makes for a breezy and open feel, awash with sunlight. The line often wraps around the building, and Octane’s baristas are careful and attentive to customers when preparing beverages and pastries. Perhaps the coolest part of Octane is that by night, the establishment transforms itself into a bar, serving craft cocktails and wine until 11 pm. Stop by Grant Park and check out Octane, one of Atlanta’s favorite local coffeehouses.
With plenty of light inside and a nice outdoor patio, this hip Atlanta coffeehouse is an excellent option for some afternoon reading on the weekends or light conversation with friends. Rocking chairs and couches further adorn Dancing Goats, making it the ultimate spot for coffee plus comfort (and of course, free Wi-Fi). Baked croissants, Danishes, and miniature donuts sit atop the list of food favorites. Head in early and grab a spot wherever you fancy, the coffee shop opens up at 6:30 am.
A caffeinated staple of the fast paced and urbanized area that is midtown, Atlanta, Empire State South brews its coffee with beans from well-known Counter Culture Coffee (out of Durham, NC). Empire State South’s current brewed-to-order selection is home to coffee beans from Bolivia, Uganda, Guatemala, Ethiopia, and others. The establishment serves esteemed espressos as well as milky lattes, but their food (breakfast plates especially) is unbeatable as far as coffeehouses go. Try a fried chicken biscuit with pimiento cheese and you’ll remember exactly where you are, the heart of the South.
This small market and bakery has European-inspired interior decorations and an age-old reputation as one of Virginia Highlands’s best, bustling pastry depots. Stuffed and overflowing with literally every variety of pastry imaginable, Alon’s also is a great spot for bottled wine and coffee beans (they serve coffee in-house as well, of course). The longstanding bakery features a small bar at which visitors can perch and admire all that Alon’s has to offer. Their artisanal breads, especially their croissants, go hand in hand with a latte or cup of espresso.
Amélie’s is a Parisian, French-themed coffeehouse in midtown, quite close to the campus of Georgia Tech. The pastries and sandwiches are delicately prepared and fresh, as is the coffee, of which they have several blends. Abuzz with college students, young professionals, and other Atlanta locals of nearly every type, it seems Amélie’s and its blue pinstriped interior are proving more than inviting enough to keep its guests coming back for more.
Grant Park’s Cherokee Avenue corner boasts Atlanta’s most familiar establishment for caffeinated beverages, Grant Park Coffeehouse. Weathered and friendly, Grant Park Coffeehouse’s iced coffee is consistent and reliable, just like its customer base. Still, newcomers are as welcome as ever. During the summer months, we advise taking advantage of Grant Park Coffeehouse’s convenient ice cream selection. The historic area is also brimming with activity: Grant Park itself is filled with historical plaques commemorating battles from the Civil War, and the Atlanta Zoo awaits no more than a short walk away.
One of Atlanta’s classic recipients for laudatory fanfare through the past few decades is Café Intermezzo. Since 1979, the Euro-style establishment caters to a diverse crowd. Bar, coffeehouse, pastry bakery, dessert haven, many visitors choose Intermezzo to meet their highly nuanced range of preferences. The menu is overwhelmingly developed with options, peruse their ‘Beverage Book,’ with over fifty pages of drinks. Food is not lost on the café. Intermezzo has a delicious crêpe menu (Nutella and strawberry, chicken with sautéed red onions) and dozens of delectable pastries to choose from.
Within arms reach of arguably Atlanta’s trendiest neighborhood, Little Five Points, JavaVino is a coffee and wine house (hence the name). Flush with leafy trees, the coffeehouse’s plot of land is shaded and relaxed, as are the local surroundings. JavaVino has its very own coffee farm, its beans are roasted fresh-to-serve and the business is family owned. Authentic and true to its roots, JavaVino is to adore for its privately owned Nicaraguan coffee farm as well as its in-house wine cellar: everything about this place is local. The breakfast burritos (with pico de gallo, eggs, and pepper jack cheese) are just a bonus.
From locally adored Atlanta parent company Souper Jenny comes Café Jonah and the Magical Attic, a one-of-a-kind Buckhead coffeehouse. Installed within a charming, renovated white brick house, Café Jonah’s red roof is hard to miss. With plenty of seasonal, home baked pastries served over the counter and a cozy attic-like area upstairs, this spot is reminiscent of a panorama from Alice in Wonderland. Kick back and sip on some Batdorf and Bronson brewed coffee.
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