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The Best Coffee Shops In Athens

We spent a month drinking specialty coffee at the best Athens cafes and returned to do it again. Learn about the city’s coffee renaissance and discover the best Athens coffee shops for drinking flat whites and cappuccinos.

Flat White at Taf in Athens Greece

True confession: We love traditional Greek food but we don’t like traditional Greek coffee – it’s strong, muddy and filled with low-quality grinds. Luckily for us, Greece is experiencing a coffee renaissance.

Prior to our initial visit to Greece in 2018, we had serious doubts about the coffee situation in Athens. After all, the city is famous for the Acropolis and souvlaki, not for flat whites and cappuccinos. After discovering a handful of cafes serving specialty coffee, we suspected that the coffee scene might be percolating but it could have gone either way.

Coffee Brewing at Samba Coffee Roasters in Athens
We’re pleased to report that Athens has joined coffee’s third wave movement. Modern coffee shops like the one operated by Samba Coffee Roasters are no longer needles in a haystack.

Returning to Athens three years later sent both caffeine and shock waves through our veins.

The city’s transition from coffee’s first wave to its third and current level has been truly transformative. Not only are numerous new shops roasting and crafting the kind of coffee we crave, but old-line Athens coffee companies have joined the party with a vengeance.

Over a decade or two but seemingly overnight, the younger generation has revolutionized the ways stalwart companies like Mokka Specialty Coffee and Samba Coffee Roasters (see both below) are doing business. As a result, more and more Athenians are choosing to drink coffee crafted with single-sourced beans and modern extraction methods.

Adding Honey to Filtered Coffee at 2 Goulies kai 2 Boukies in Athens
Adding honey to this cup of coffee was a touch that we appreciated at Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies.

Athens’ new coffee culture is a reflection of the kind of youthful vitality that intrepid travelers can discover in the ancient city’s bold street art and emerging restaurant scene. This is a city where baristas don’t hesitate to add a local twist to coffee’s global reach with ingredients like honey and in variations of Greece’s popular freddo iced coffee preparation.

It’s also a city where everything old, including coffee, is new again. It’s a fun element that makes Athens one of the most underrated coffee cities in all of Europe.

Our Favorite Athens Coffee Shops

Flat White at Mr. Bean in Athens Greece
We love drinking flat whites in Athens. We drank this one at now-closed Mr. Bean back in 2018.

Gone are the days when traditional Greek coffee was the only coffee available in Athens. No longer a black hole for lightly roasted single-origin beans, the city has joined coffee’s third wave and isn’t looking back.

It’s true. While Greece’s original coffee style remains readily available with its strong, rich brew, many coffee shops are choosing to craft coffee with a Chemex or Aeropress instead of a Briki. These coffee shops are starting new traditions that complement centuries-old rituals surrounding the act of drinking coffee in Greece. And, in many cases, they’re roasting their own beans or sourcing beans from local roasters.

Traditional Greek Coffee at Mokka Specialty Coffee in Athens
The process for preparing traditional Greek coffee is fun to watch. We watched this particular process at Mokka Specialty Coffee.

We get that you may feel torn about what kind of coffee to drink when you visit Athens. We say try a cup of traditional coffee and see if you can drink it without choking on the grinds at the bottom of the cup.

If you’re like us, one muddy cup will be enough.

When you’re ready to travel back to the 21st century, check out the following Athens cafes that craft and serve top notch cups of coffee.


Irini Daskalopoulou at Taf in Athens Greece
Irini Daskalopoulou expertly crafted this flat white for us at taf.

Away from the maddening crowds, taf is just a short walk from touristic Monastiraki. Once you make that walk, you’ll find a small coffee shop that brews and packages its own beans.

You’ll also find a great spot to take a break and enjoy excellent coffee.

Coffee To Go at Taf
Even the to go coffees at taf have pretty latte art.

No flash in the pan, taf has been open since 2009. This leader in the Athens coffee scene offers a variety of beans sourced from Africa and Central America which customers enjoy in various coffee drinks including flat whites and cappuccinos.

If you love taf’s beans, you can buy some to enjoy later in Athens or you can buy bags in global cities like London, Singapore and Milan. You can also drink taf coffee in Santorini while exploring the Greek isles.

Pro Tip
Grab some souvlaki at Lefteris O Politis before or after you get your coffee at taf. This excellent Athens souvlaki shop is just a five-minute walk from taf.

taf coffee shop is located at Emmanouil Mpenaki 7, Athina 106 78, Greece.

Samba Coffee Roasters

Samba Coffee Roasters in Athens
Miltiadis Kouremenos skillfully crafted our competition flat white with the cafe’s unique AREMDE espresso machine.

The fact that Samba Coffee Roasters has been roasting coffee since 1979 is no secret – the Athens roastery proudly displays its birth year on its mugs. But, thanks to the company’s younger generation, Samba Coffee Roasters is one of the most innovative coffee companies in Athens.

In recent years, Samba has exchanged old school techniques for a more modern way of roasting coffee. The company also opened a state of the art cafe in 2020.

Flat White outside Samba Coffee Roasters in Athens
Samba’s corner cafe is a fun spot to sip coffee and chat with fellow coffee connoisseurs.

Samba’s innovative approach to coffee is readily apparent to all who approach the cafe and encounter a gleaming AREMDE Nexus One espresso machine imported from Australia. Without a doubt, the sleek, hollow squircle-shaped machine is a show stopper that produces a product to match. However, the primary reason to visit Samba is its coffee.

The cafe separates its brews into four categories – black, white, cold and competition coffees. You may be tempted to skip Samba’s competition coffees based on prices that are double or triple the other options. Don’t do it. After tasting both options, we wholeheartedly recommend the splurge based on flavors that include tropical fruit, blueberries, cherries and rum.

Pro Tip
Chat with one of Samba’s award-winning baristas if you’re not sure what to order.

Samba Coffee Roasters has a cafe located at Solonos 36, Athina 106 73, Greece.

Handpickers Coffee Roasters

Barista at Handpickers Coffee Roasters in Athens
Stefanos Founis crafted our coffee with a Chemex coffeemaker and Ethiopian beans.

Located in the residential Tavros district, Handpickers Coffee Roasters isn’t near tourist sites like the Parthenon. However, it’s just a short metro ride away from those sites and most of the city’s hotels.

Transportation to Handpickers Coffee Roasters
Our M1 metro ride from The Stanley hotel took less than a half hour and cost us €1.40 each. Other transportation options include a 46 minute walk or a 12 minute drive.

Pouring Filtered Coffee at Handpickers Coffee Roasters in Athens
We sipped this filtered coffee and a latte (not pictured) at one of Handpickers Coffee Roasters’ outdoor tables.

The Handpickers Coffee Roasters team sources and roasts beans which they sell at the coffee shop and online. However, they don’t actually pick any beans. The Handpickers name is an homage to the workers who do that thankless task in the field.

Alexandros Founis opened Handpickers in 2017. His brother Stefanos works the barista station crafting lattes and pour overs. The cafe has outdoor tables which is where we enjoyed our coffee drinks. Takeaway prices are a bit lower for those who are in a rush or don’t want to linger.

Pro Tip
Handpickers Coffee Roasters is a great spot to grab a coffee on the way to Athens’ Pireaus port.

Handpickers Coffee Roasters is located at Anaxagora 45, Tavros 177 78, Greece.

Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies

2 Goulies kai 2 Boukies in Athens
Nikos Anemos shared his opinions about coffee and other matters during our afternoon coffee break at Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies.

Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies literally translates to two sips and two bites. We went beyond that concept by finishing every sip and bite at the quirky cafe.

Operated by Nikos and Tânia Anemos since 2016, Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies crafts coffee with Roller Roasters beans (subject to change) and serves a menu of food that includes Greek yogurt and a range of sandwiches and desserts. Prices at this Athens cafe are reasonable and the atmosphere is chill.

2 Coffees at 2 Goulies kai 2 Boukies in Athens
Filled with two flat whites, these colorful coffee cups spoke to us in more ways than one.

Tânia, an award-winning barista, crafts the coffee and Nikos takes care of the food. On our visit we enjoyed flat whites crafted with Ecuadorian beans and a special filtered coffee with Honduran beans and excellent honey. We were in Greece after all.

While the cafe’s espresso shots impressed us most with their tropical lemon flavor, we also enjoyed the cafe’s pulled pork burger topped with egg and sheep milk feta. In fact, we enjoyed the sandwich so much that we later chowed down at Po’ Boys BBQ where the meat was prepared.

Pro Tip
Start your morning with coffee and yogurt at Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies. However, don’t feel obligated to limit yourself to two sips and two bites.

Duo Goulies & Duo Mpoukies is located at Dragatsaniou 8, Athina 105 59, Greece.

Mokka Specialty Coffee

Mokka Specialty Coffee in Athens
Mokka Specialty Coffee’s shop has a mix of old school equipment and new fangled coffee gear.

Mokka Specialty Coffee didn’t always specialize in specialty coffee. How could it? This Athens coffee company was founded in 1923, decades before third wave coffee (or second wave coffee for that matter) was a thing.

The company renovated its original building near Athens’ impressive central market in 1999. More recently, the old-line coffee company has embraced artisan single-source arabica beans that it sources from partner producers in countries like Brazil, Costa Rico, Ethiopia and Guatemala. The company has also started serving pour overs and craft coffee at its next door cafe.

Filtered Coffee and a Cookie at Mokka Specialty Coffee in Athens
The barista at Mokka Specialty coffee served our filtered coffee in a Hario glass server. He also served us a cookie.

Not only does Mokka’s cafe serve flat whites and filtered coffees crafted with arabica beans from countries like Kenya and Ethiopia, but it also serves thick-as-mud traditional Greek coffee made with those same beans. It’s an interesting twist and one that we dig. We also dig that the cafe serves cookies with its coffee.

Pro Tip
Pair your visit to Mokka Specialty Coffee with a visit to Athens’ central market.

Mokka Specialty Coffee is located at Athinas 44, Athina 105 51, Greece.

The Underdog

The Underdog in Athens
The Underdog’s terrace is a great spot to enjoy coffee and other libations.

The Underdog started roasting coffee in 2011 before specialty coffee was popular in Athens. Those days are over and so is The Underdog’s status as… wait for it… an underdog.

No longer a startup roaster, The Underdog opened its multi-story cafe in 2015 and now employs champion baristas and mixologists. The cafe is a great spot to sip coffee or a cocktail. It’s also a great spot to chow down.

Espresso Fredo at The Underdog in Athens
This freddo cappuccino was an ideal sipper on a seasonably warm Athens afternoon.

During our visit, we nabbed a spot on the cafe’s expansive terrace and promptly ordered two drinks – a flat white and a freddo cappuccino. While our flat white was text book, the icy freddo cappuccino, topped with frothy milk, was the standout . We don’t know why this iced drink isn’t more popular outside of Greece but we’re happy to drink it whenever we’re in Greek cities like Athens and Thesoliniki.

We also ordered two dishes – Greek Yogurt with granola, honey and cinnamon and Pancakes with lemon curd, dried blueberries and almond brittle. Considering that we cleaned both plates, it’s fair to say that this underdog is an over achiever.

Pro Tip
Don’t feel compelled to drink coffee at The Underdog. Other drink options include craft beer, cocktail and wine. Order an Irish Coffee flight if you’re torn between ordering specailty coffee or an adult beverage.

The Underdog is located at Iraklidon 8, Athina 118 51, Greece.

Foyer Espresso Bar

Barista at Foyer in Athens
Tarik, a barista at Foyer, crafted our coffees in this Athens cafe decorated with Brooklyn-style tiles.

Foyer is an urban espresso bar run by coffee enthusiasts for coffee enthusiasts.

Open every day, the cafe serves coffee drinks crafted with Brazilian beans that it roasts locally as well as other beans that it sources from a rotating list of Europeans roasters. During our visit, the guest roasters were Sweden’s Koppi and Belgium’s MOK.

Flat White at Foyer in Athens
This flat white at Foyer fueled us during a long day of food tripping in Athens.

The attentions to details are hard to miss at this cafe. Not only does Foyer use a second grinder for its guest coffees, but it also sells a curated collection of books and coffee equipment.

We appreciated these details as we sipped our flat white and latte while chilling at an outside table. After all, we’re coffee enthusiasts too.

Pro Tip
Order tea sourced from London’s Good & Proper Tea if you’re more of a tea enthusiast than a coffee enthusiast.

Foyer Espresso Bar is located at Panepistimiou 46, Athina 106 78, Greece.

Beauty Killed The Beast

Beauty Killed the Beast Interior in Athens
The vibe inside Beauty Killed the Beast can best be described at urban chic.

At first glance, Beauty Killed the Beast looks like it could be a case of style over substance. The Keramikos cafe has funky decor, a large outdoor dining area and a long inside bar. It’s a hip cafe that attracts an equally hip clientele.

However, unlike the way that video killed the radio star, this beauty of a cafe didn’t kill the cooks or the baristas. We know this because our crafted coffee drinks paired well with the cafe’s decadent Monte Christo-like stuffed french toast brioche with ham, gruyere and honey syrup that we shared.

Coffees at Beauty Killed the Beast in Athens
A stuffed monkey kept us company while we sipped crafted coffees at Beauty Killed the Beast’s bar.

During our mid-morning visit, we enjoyed two coffees crafted with Brazilian beans sourced from local Wisecup Coffee Roasters. We also enjoyed the front row view of the cafe’s skilled bartenders so much that we ordered a post breakfast drink – a signature Beauty Killed the Zombie cocktail.

With a blend of rums, homemade falernum syrup, spices, grapefruit, tonga, hibiscus and lime, the pink beauty was a strong yet sweet beast. In other words, we loved it.

Pro Tip
Don’t feel like you have to choose between coffee and cocktails. We say order both!

Beauty Killed the Beast is located at Paramithias 14, Athina 104 35, Greece.

Peek A Bloom

Peek a Bloom in Athens Greece
Peek a Bloom’s courtyard buzzes with activity

** Important Update – Peek a Bloom has permanently closed. **

A cool, shady alleyway location adorned with potted plants makes Peek a Bloom a popular choice for both tourists and locals.

Roasting its beans onsite, the Syntagma coffee shop serves crafted espresso drinks as well as filtered coffee drinks. The vibe is great as is the coffee.

Flat White at Peek a Bloom in Athens Greece
Peek a Bloom sources its beans from local producers around the world.

This cafe also has a food menu that compares favorably with menus at many Athens restaurants. The menu features breakfast and lunch favorites like quinoa salad, eggs benedict and a unique pastrami sandwich flavored with chili jalapeño mayo.

Pro Tip
Peek a Bloom is located down an alley from a couple other adjacent cafes. Be careful that you don’t go to the wrong coffee shop by mistake.

Peek a Bloom was located at Lekka 14, Athina 105 62, Greece. It has permanently closed.

Kudu Coffee Roasters

Kudu Coffee Roasters in Athens Greece.
Modern equipment creates modern coffee at Kudu Coffee Roasters.

We stumbled upon Kudu Coffee Roasters while walking around the Gazi neighborhood. Before long, we were sitting in the shi-shi coffee shop and enjoying an iced latte.

The thoroughly modern coffee shop prepares coffee using the latest extraction methods and offers cupping and brewing classes for its customers. Serious coffee drinkers can take an 18-hour barista workshop at Kudu.

Pro Tip
Don’t feel like you have to venture to Gazi to enjoy Kudu’s coffee. We spotted the beans at Small 8 in the Pagrati neighborhood during one of our visits.

Kudo Coffee Roasters is located at 25is Martiou 22, Neo Psichiko 154 51, Greece.

Additional Athens Cafes

Coffee Drinks at Handpickers Coffee Roasters in Athens
The specialty coffee options in Athens are ridiculously extensive.

The Athens specialty coffee scene is expanding with new cafes opening every month. After you drink coffee at our favorite spots, check out some or all of the following Athens cafes to find your favorites:

Athens Coffee FAQs

Is coffee popular in Athens?

Coffee arrived in Greece during the 15th century and remains popular in Athens to this day. Locals drink coffee at all hours of the day from dawn to dark.

Is coffee expensive in Athens?

Coffee prices vary in Athens. Specialty coffee prices in Athens are in line with prices in other European capital cities. However, it’s possible to find freddo’s and basic coffee drinks for less than two euros at traditional coffee shops.

What is a freddo?

The freddo is a popular coffee drink in Athens. It’s basically a chilled blended espresso beverage. With or without sugar, the freddo is a great to drink on hot Athens days.

Does Athens have specialty coffee shops?

Yes. Athens has joined coffee’s third wave. The city has multiple specialty coffee shops in addition to its many traditional coffee shops.

What are the best specialty coffee shops in Athens?

Athens has dozens of specialty coffee shops. Top shops include taf, Samba Coffee Roasters and Handpickers Coffee Roasters.

Is Starbucks in Athens?

Yes. Athens’ first Starbucks location opened in 2002.

Athens Planning Checklist

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About The Authors

About The Authors

Daryl & Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on their website 2foodtrippers. Since launching the site in 2012, they’ve traveled to over 40 countries in their quest to bring readers a unique taste of the world.

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Article Updates
We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

We self-funded our multiple trips to Athens.

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Original Publication Date: May 18, 2020
Republish Date: February 17, 2022

Gary Darling

Sunday 21st of May 2023

I'm making location QR codes for the coffee shops on your site. Google tells me that peek a bloom is permanently closed.

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Sunday 21st of May 2023

Well that's a bummer. Thanks for giving us the heads up. We've updated our guide to note the closure.