The 10 Best Coffee Shops In Washington DC, USA

Photo of Jonathan Stern
9 February 2017

It’s easy to see that coffee culture is on the rise in Washington DC – just take one look at the number of small, independent shops found in neighborhoods throughout the city. We take a look at the top places to satisfy your caffeine craving.

Zeke’s Coffee of DC | Courtesy of Zeke’s

Zeke’s Coffee of DC

Zeke’s Coffee of DC uses a fluid bed coffee roaster, which roasts the beans more quickly and uniformly than a conventional drum roaster. This leads to cleaner tasting coffee that has more distinct flavor. Zeke’s specializes in sustainable Arabica beans to ensure the highest quality coffee. You can get more than just a cup here, too: join the DC Coffee Club and receive a pound of coffee – pickup or delivery – weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. The variety is almost endless.

2300 Rhode Island Avenue NE, Washington, DC, USA, +1 202 733 2646

Baked & Wired

Georgetown hotspot Baked & Wired is known for its excellent coffee, scrumptious baked goods and friendly, skilled baristas. This small, artsy spot offers coffee and espresso from multiple roasters as well as fresh milk from Trickling Springs Creamery. Tea aficionados can enjoy micro-brewed chai from Mychai in Bend, Oregon. Enjoy a cup of your favorite coffee beverage handcrafted by a professional barista while noshing on one of the best cupcakes to be found in DC.

1052 Thomas Jefferson Street NW, Washington, DC, USA, +1 202 333 2500

Filter Coffeehouse & Espresso Bar

Bar, American, Wine, Beer, Coffee, Fast Food
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Top pourover from Peregrine Espresso
Top pourover from Peregrine Espresso | © Bex Walton/Flickr
With artfully roasted coffee from local producer Ceremony Coffee in nearby Annapolis, Maryland, Filter Coffeehouse & Espresso Bar has provided DC with top-notch coffee since March of 2010. All of the products are picked and prepared with a commitment to quality and service. This means at Filter, there is no doubt that coffee comes first. Filter has three separate locations in DC: Dupont Circle, Foggy Bottom and Brookland.

Peregrine Espresso

Since it opened its first location in 2008, Peregrine Espresso has garnered attention as one of the best coffee shops in the nation from the likes of Bon Appetit, Food and Wine, and USA Today to name just a few. In addition, a number of its staff have taken home top honors in barista competitions across the US. The coffee shop focuses on sustainability and aims to educate its customers. It even offers classes on espresso techniques and brewing. Like Filter, Peregrine’s success has resulted in three separate locations in Eastern Market, Logan Circle and Union Market.

660 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, Washington, DC, USA (Eastern Market), +1 202 629 4381

Sidamo Coffee & Tea

Cafe, American, Coffee, Tea , $$$
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Qualia Coffee
Qualia Coffee | Courtesy of Qualia Coffee
Sidamo Coffee & Tea is a family-owned Ethiopian coffee shop that has become a mainstay on the ever-changing H Street Corridor. The organic, shade-grown beans are roasted right in the shop and every Sunday at 2pm, Sidamo hosts a traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony. This is one of the most recognizable aspects of Ethiopian culture and arguably the oldest coffee tradition in the world.

Qualia Coffee

Cafe, Coffee Shop, American, Coffee, Tea , $$$
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Qualia Coffee is not only a full-service coffee shop; it is also home to small-batch roasting company Fresh Off the Roast. This company is dedicated to sourcing recently harvested beans from around the world. Here, you’ll find beans from all over – Guatemala, Uganda, Haiti, Brazil and Ethiopia to name just a few. Qualia also offers rare coffee that is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. During the hot summer months, enjoy an iced coffee, an iced tea or lemonade made in-house from scratch.


Tryst is located in the vibrant Adams Morgan neighborhood, making it one of the best spots to hang out and enjoy a cup of coffee while taking in the sights and sounds of the city. Tryst has been going against suburban culture and the coffee chains that are so prevalent in the US since its inception in 1998. With its copper-plated counters, mismatching silverware and plush velvet armchairs, this is a place where the artsy type will feel right at home.

2459 18th Street NW, Washington, DC, USA, +1 202 232 5500

La Colombe

Located in an alley in the Shaw neighborhood, La Colombe is a bit off the beaten track. La Colombe is for the coffee purist, as it does not serve anything else, save for a few kinds of pastries that pair well with your morning beverage. Come here to enjoy some of the highest quality coffee in DC. Even the presentation is tasteful – it is served in beautiful ceramic cups crafted in Italy.

Blagden Alley 924 N Street NW, Washington, DC, USA, +1 202 289 4850

Compass Coffee

Having opened in 2014, Compass Coffee is one of DC’s newest coffee shops, the result of a collaboration of two friends and former Marines who served together in Afghanistan. The beans are roasted on-site and there are nine blends to choose from. Get creative with one of their lattes flavored with maple or lavender. Like its namesake, Compass strives to help its customers get their bearings and point them in the right direction for the rest of the day.

1535 7th Street NW, Washington, DC, USA, +1 202 251 7402

Chinatown Coffee Co.

Cafe, Coffee Shop, American, Coffee, Tea , $$$
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Chinatown Coffee Co. has brewing down to a science – whether you prefer chemex, pour over, French press or syphon brewing. Last year, Men’s Journal selected the coffee shop as one of the top 11 in the country, citing its energetic and artful baristas. If you are feeling adventurous, try ordering something that you’d never expect to see on the menu at a cafe – absinthe.

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