Home to Washington Square Park, independent shops, and an array of iconic New York City landmarks, Manhattan’s Greenwich Village boasts a lot to see and do. A remnant of the area’s heyday as a hub for bohemians and beatniks, the West Village also hosts a thriving coffee shop scene. Next time your caffeine-craving kicks in (and you know it will), enjoy an afternoon pick-me-up at one of these 10 local cafés.
Cafe, Restaurant, Australian, $$$
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Banter | Courtesy of Banter
One of many Australian cafés cropping up in New York City, Banter stands out for its eclectic cuisine and a selection of more wines and cocktails than you might expect from a menu featuring this many greens. In fact, this down-the-middle approach is what singles the café out. For health-minded eaters, the spot serves up an array of vibrant veggie bowls and “wellness drinks,” while indulgent diners can dig into fried chicken burgers and Nutella® French toast. Whatever suits your appetite, at Banter, you’re sure to sample something worth talking about.
Sustainable, stylish, and wholesome, Ancolie cooks up creations that your body—and your Instagram feed—will thank you for. Here, everything from rainbow salad to specialty espresso to old-fashioned chocolate cake comes in reusable glass jars. In a crowd of coffee shop chains, Ancolie deserves applause for bringing creativity back to New York’s café scene. Tip: When you return to Ancolie (which you will), return your used jar and receive a $1 discount.
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Cafe, Restaurant, Smoothie Bar, Healthy, Vegan, $$$
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Strawberry Shortcake | Courtesy of Peacefood Cafe
Built on the belief that “peace begins on your plate,” vegan eatery Peacefood Cafe has been pleasing plant-based and carnivorous eaters alike for nearly a decade. At this roomy café, there’s always a crowd savoring award-winning chickpea fries, gourmet cheeseburgers, and raw cashew cheesecake. Visit this healthy hot spot to discover how peace—and content tummies—begins on Peacefood’s plates.
You won’t find fussy drinks at Third Rail Coffee, but with quality like this, you won’t miss the artificial extras. Here, baristas make classic coffee beverages, such as lattes, Cortados, and Americanos, with care for crowds enjoying the café’s photography displays and stylish décor, complete with exposed brick and industrial-style furniture. Serving up no-nonsense coffee and locally made goods, Third Rail Coffee tastes like New York City.
As its name suggests, Stumptown Coffee Roasters takes the coffee-making process seriously. From its branches in various major North American cities (including two in New York), Stumptown’s Green Team travels to four different continents to support the company’s coffee producers and sample their products. The result of this hard work? A perfect cup of coffee, every time. Join the queue at the café’s West Village location to experience, perhaps for the first time, coffee made with care.
For a taste of Old New York, look no further than Caffe Reggio, a historic Greenwich Village destination credited with conveying the cappuccino to the United States. The café’s European-leaning menu features Italian espresso, pasta dishes with homemade sauces, gourmet omelets, and more. Also offering relaxed service and artwork dating back to the Italian Renaissance, the area’s oldest café continues to be one of its best.
Billing itself as “Manhattan’s only board game cafe,” The Uncommons offers elevated game night experiences for families, gamers, and curious caffeine lovers. Home to the East Coast’s largest library of tabletop games, the café’s collection features familiar classics as well as underground and indie selections. As you might expect, The Uncommons’ menu is as unique as the café’s concept and features peanut butter-flavored coffee, pigs in a blanket, and an impressive selection of craft beers.
Support your community while getting your caffeine fix at Grounded, a locally minded café serving up the best of New York City and its neighbors. Small-batch organic coffee is roasted weekly in New Jersey; loose-leaf teas come courtesy of a nearby Greenwich Village company, and delicious bagels, cookies, and more arrive daily from local businesses. In keeping with its community-centered ethos, Grounded offers a cozy environment great for freelancers, friends, and solo guests alike.
At Pinterest-perfect coffee shop and general store THE ELK, specialty drinks and wholesome fare are served in a Northwestern-inspired environment. Admire the spot’s luxury candles, handmade greeting cards, and artisan skin care products before sitting down to enjoy steel-cut oatmeal, soft-scrambled eggs, and tuna melts made with sustainably caught fish and country bread.
Situated above the famed Comedy Cellar, where amateurs and established talents share the stand-up stage, Olive Tree Cafe is a popular pick for late-night crowds. Enjoy the spot’s chalkboard-topped tables and silent screenings of Chaplin films before digging into Mediterranean menu items, including stuffed grape leaves, kebabs, fresh falafel, and hummus.