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25 Best Coffee Shops In Philadelphia

Coffee and Mosaic at Function Coffee Labs in Philadelphia
Image: ©2foodtrippers

Philadelphia holds a special place in our hearts when it comes to coffee. It’s the city where we progressed from coffee’s second wave to its third and current wave. It’s also where we became addicted to flat whites, cappuccinos and the occasional pour over back in 2010.

Today, more than a decade later, the city is literally percolating with specialty shops and roasteries. Sure, many Philly locals remain loyal to the coffee brewed at Wawa and Dunkin Donuts. This guide isn’t for those people. It’s for people like us who truly appreciate the experience of drinking great tasting coffee in communal settings.

Our Favorite Philadelphia Coffee Shops

Coffee Break at Cake and Joe in Philadelphi
Philadelphia’s best coffee shops continue to evolve as evidenced by Cake and Joe which specializes in both coffee and cake. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Most travelers arrive in Philadelphia with an eating plan but few arrive with a coffee plan. We recently realized this when a European friend traveled to Philly and was at a loss as to where she could drink really good coffee and work on her laptop at the same time. After setting her on the right path, it only made sense that we would share our knowledge about the best coffee shops in Philadelphia more widely.

Coffee is just one aspect to explore. Discover the food you can’t miss eating in Philadelphia at the city’s best restaurants.

Cappuccino and Coffee Beans at Ox Coffee in Philadelphia
We’re rarely far away from our next good coffee in Philadelphia. We drank this one at Ox Coffee. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

As specialty coffee fanatics who cumulatively lived in center city for more than three decades and currently live in Portugal, we’re now sharing our favorite spots to drink third wave coffee in Philadelphia. Some of these shops have been around for years and others are new kids on the Philly coffee block.

Most serve tasty treats from local bakeries like Au Fournil and Crust Vegan Bakery in addition to their coffee programs. One specializes in soft pretzel sandwiches and another has a basement bakery.

Egg Coffee from Above at Caphe Roasters in Philadelphia
We drank this iced egg coffee at Càphê Roasters, the first Vietnamese specialty coffee shop in Philadelphia. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

There’s even a Philadelphia cafe that specializes in roasting and serving Vietnamese coffee. Who knows what will be next? The options are practically endless now that the city has fully joined coffee’s third wave.

Whether you’re looking to hunker down with a flat white while checking your email or if you just want to grab an iced latte on your way to the shore, the following Philadelphia coffee shops will fit your bill:

1. Elixr

Coffees at Elixr in Philadelphi
Proving that we don’t always drink flat whites, we enjoyed drinking Elixr’s tahini shakerato crafted with tahini, oat milk, honey, cinnamon, salt and two shots of espresso during a summertime visit. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We often have trouble choosing a favorite coffee shop in cities like Berlin, Paris and even our current home city of Lisbon. This isn’t the case in Philadelphia where Elixr easily earns our vote for crafting the best coffee in Philadelphia.

We have a history with this cafe that started at its original location on 15th Street before moving to Sydenham Street and later expanding to include national locations. Back in the days before Elixr roasted its own beans, the cafe sourced beans from as far away as Topeka, Kansas (PT’s Coffee) and Chicago (Intelligentsia) just to prove the virtue of excellently made coffee.

They’ve since joined the roasting party and are now one of the best roasters in the USA.

Barista at Elixr in Philadelphia
Barista Mario Scarlato crafted our cappuccino with precision and care at Elixr’s Market Street location. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Elixr is the cafe where we sent our European friend who was suffering from specialty coffee withdrawal. It’s the cafe that we visit first every time we return to Philly. And it’s the cafe where we buy bags of freshly roasted beans to enjoy at home.

Starting at the top with owner Evan Inatome and trickling throughout the Elixr empire, quality rules the day in all aspects of the business from sourcing quality single-origin beans around the world to serving quality espresso drinks to thirsty crowds who stream through the handful of Elixr cafes in Philadelphia as well as in State College and Nashville.

Pro Tip
Drink outside the box by ordering a strawberry oat milk latte or a matcha butterfly lemonade.

Elixr Coffee Roasters has multiple Philadelphia cafes. They roast their beans at the cafe located at 315 N 12th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107, United States.

2. ReAnimator Coffee

Crafting a Cappuccino at ReAnimator Coffee in Philadelphia
ReAnimator Coffee serves great coffee away from the Center City crush. We drank this one on a crisp autumn day. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

While we enjoyed drinking coffee in ReAnimator’s Fishtown and South Philly locations in the past, the Kensington location is now our preferred choice.

The large converted factory space not only operates as a roastery and training lab but also has a full coffee menu and a range of treats ideal for breakfast, lunch or a snack.

Iced Latte on Counter at ReAnimator Coffee in Philadelphia
ReAnimator’s Kensington location is a buzz of activity. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

After roasting beans for a few years, ReAnimator Coffee opened its first cafe in at Norris and Susquehanna streets in 2013 and its Kensington location a year after that. Kensington is where much of the action happens now since this location houses their roastery and training lab. Other ReAnimator cafes are located in Port Richmond, South Philly and West Philly.

You can sign up for ReAnimator’s coffee subscription if you don’t live near any of those locations.

Morning Bun and Iced Latte at ReAnimator Coffee in Philadelphia
Scandinavian pastries and iced lattes is a combination that we appreciate wherever we are in the world. We appreciated this combo at ReAnimator’s Kensington location. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We visited the Kensington location three times during our most recent return to Philly for research purposes so that we could sample the cafe’s coffee, both hot and cold, and its food, both sweet and savory. After three visits, it’s fair to call this Philadelphia coffee shop one of our favorites.

Pro Tip
Satisfy your cravings for coffee and donuts at Hello Donuts unless you’d rather satisfy your cravings for coffee. It”s part of the ReAnimator family.

ReAnimator Coffee has multiple Philadelphia cafes. The original cafe is located at 1523 E Susquehanna Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19125, United States.

3. Càphê Roasters

Inside Caphe Roasters in Philadelphia
Càphê Roasters’ beautiful cafe is located in Kensington. Yes, Kensington. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Coffee from Vietnam is not a new concept to us – we’ve cumulatively spent a year, give or take, in the Southeast Asian country. While there, we drank our fair share of Vietnamese coffee in cities like Hanoi, Da Nang and Saigon as well as the occasional egg coffee. In Philadelphia, we can now drink Vietnamese coffee at Càphê Roasters.

Càphê Roasters occupies a beautiful space in a somewhat surprising Harrowgate location (under the El at Kensington Avenue and J Street, just a few blocks from blighted K&A). Beyond its beautiful space and surprising location, Càphê Roasters claims fame as the city’s first Vietnamese specialty coffee roaster. To achieve this status, Càphê Roasters imports raw beans from Asia, specifically from Lam Don, Vietnam and Pa Miang, Thailand, and roasts them on-site.

Crafting Vietnamese-style coffee drinks with those beans is where Càphê Roasters really shines.

Coffee Drinks at Caphe Roasters in Philadelphia
Our iced Egg Coffee and iced Vietnamese Latte were each other’s visual yin and yang. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

To be honest, when we lived in Vietnam, we mostly drank cappuccinos and lattes. Traditional Vietnamese coffee follows a different path than the specialty coffee we prefer to drink. Most Vietnamese coffee is made with robusta beans and the coffee is roasted dark.

Co-founder Thu Pham clearly drank a lot of Vietnamese coffee too. She developed the cafe’s coffee program including the two drinks that we sipped. Our iced Vietnamese Latte was a treat with its sweetened bottom layer of sweetened condensed milk and top layer of espresso.

Iced Egg Coffee at Caphe Roasters in Philadelphia
We appreciated the look of this Egg Coffee more than we appreciated its taste. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Similar to egg coffees we drank in Vietnam’s capital city, Pham’s Egg Coffee pairs eggy sweetened custard with bitter joe. Unfortunately, despite the drink’s stylish appearance, the cafe’s version didn’t quite come together for us.

Was it because they used espresso? Was it because they didn’t serve it in a hot water bath like in Hanoi? Was it the custard? We don’t know. But the coffee didn’t quite have the decadent dessert-like quality we loved in Hanoi at Cafe Giảng.

Banh Mi and Coffee at Caphe Roasters in Philadelphia
Pairing a Banh Mi with iced Vietnamese Latte at Càphê Roasters is the next best thing to eating the duo in Vietnam. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Beyond coffee, Càphê Roasters’s menu has various tea drinks and an intriguing food menu created by Executive Chef Jacob Trinh. Though we were tempted by items like Crispy French Fries, Tangy Toast and Condensed Milk Soft Serve, we stayed true to our Vietnamese memories and ordered a Banh Mi.

Càphê Roasters nailed it – a crackly mini-baguette filled with pickled veggies, herbs, pâte and house mayo. The globally popular sandwich was remarkably similar to the numerous Banh Mi we ate in Vietnam. It may have easily cost 10 time more but that’s ok since we saved a fortune in airfare.

Pro Tip
Buy a Vietnamese Coffee Brew Kit and brew your own Vietnamese coffee at home. The kit includes a bag of Càphê Roasters’ Vietamese Espresso Blend, condensed milk, a Vietnamese coffee filter called a phin and step-by-step instructions.

Càphê Roasters is located at 3400 J Street, Philadelphia, PA 19134, United States.

4. Thank You Thank You Coffee Brewers

Barista at Thank You Thank You in Philadelphia
We’d like to thank Cody McGregor for vigorously shaking our 24 Carat Gold shakerato. Perhaps we should thank him twice. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Thank You Thank You Coffee Brewers would stand out for its name alone. We joked about its repetitive use of the words ‘thank you’ as we approached the cafe on the edge of Jewelers’ Row.

It turns out that the joke was on us. Despite only being open since May of 2022, Thank You Thank You is one of the best coffee shops in Philadelphia. It’s also one of the city’s most unique cafes.

Specialty Coffee at Thank You Thank You in Philadelphia
This 24 Carat Gold shakerato was worth its weight in gold. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

While most Philadelphia cafes roast their own beans or source beans from one roaster, Thank You Thank You’s owner Cody McGregor operates as a multi-brewer by sourcing quality beans from roasters like Sey in Brooklyn and Friedhats in Amsterdam. No neophyte, he paid his dues at Starbucks before honing his craft at Ultimo and ReAnimator.

McGregor’s love for coffee was obvious both in his advocacy and his product. Daryl savored every sip of his pour over crafted with Colombian beans roasted by Sey. Mindi, on the other hand, sipped her 24 Carat Gold specialty drink with abandon. The slightly sweet, slightly salty, orange-flavored shakerato was a delight.

Filtered Coffee at Thank You Thank You in Philadelphia
We said ‘yes’ to this coffee brewed with washed Colombian beans sourced from Sey. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The quality of McGregor’s coffee, along with its location, would be enough to draw us to this small but stylish cafe around the corner from Washington Square. However, these aren’t the reasons that make Thank You Thank You so unique. That reason comes down to five words at the bottom of its menu – Tax Included / Proudly Gratuity Free.

Although typical in the rest of the world, building the tax and gratuity into the price is the antithesis of the American tipping culture. Wonderful for both the employees who are provided a fair wage and customers who don’t have that awkward moment at the register, it’s a practice that we fully support and commend.

Pro Tip
Pair your coffee with a donut, pastry or chocolate bar if you want to turn your coffee stop into a coffee break.

Thank You Thank You Coffee Brewers is located at 700 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106, United States.

5. Two Persons Coffee

Barista at Two Persons in Philadelphia
Two Persons Coffee serves quality coffee in the ground floor of the Bok Building. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Located inside the trendy Bok Building since 2018, Two Persons Coffee is owned by two people as you might expect; however, owners Adam Gery and Whitney Joslin didn’t name their South Philly cafe after themselves or in reference to the cafe’s size. Instead, the provocative name was inspired by Edward Bok’s book Two Persons that was published almost a century earlier in 1922.

While Bok’s book has absolutely nothing to do with coffee, Two Persons Coffee certainly does. The independent coffee shop sources quality beans from around the world to craft their joe.

During our visits, the cafe offered beans from Australia’s Market Lane, Lancaster’s Passenger and Massachusetts’ Little Wolf. Don’t count on those beans though – the bean selection changes constantly. On other days, the cafe may offer beans from roasters like Copenhagen’s Prologue or Oakland’s Flower Child.

Cappuccino at Two Persons in Philadelphia
Is it just us or does coffee tasted a little bit better when it’s served in a pretty mug? | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Two Persons Coffee is a great cafe and not just because it serves great coffee, which is obviously the most important reason. It’s a great spot to chill thanks to its eclectic furniture and free WiFi. Plus, it’s conveniently located next door to Machine Shop, one of Philly’s most lauded bakeries.

Pro Tip
If you love the ceramic coffee mugs at Two Persons Coffee, you can buy similar mugs at Stover Ceramics located just down the hall.

Two Persons Coffee is located at the Bok Building, 821 Dudley St, Philadelphia, PA 19148, United States.

6. Ox Coffee

Barista at Ox Coffee in Philadelphia
Max Cudworth doesn’t just co-own Ox Coffee. He also roasts beans and crafts a mean cappuccino. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We liked Ox Coffee back when the Queen Village cafe opened just five blocks from our house, yet we weren’t regulars. Back then, circa 2013 when we were slaves to free wifi, we spent the majority of our time at Shot Tower (see below). Fast forward a decade and things have changed.

While Ox Coffee still prioritizes in-person communication over the internet, it no longer sources beans from Portland’s Sumptown. Instead, owners Max Cudworth and Will Gross locally roast global beans in a Kensington roastery.

Cappuccinos at Ox Coffee in Philadelphia
We enjoyed sipping these cappuccinos at Ox Coffee despite the cafe’s lack of free WiFi. We enjoyed them a lot. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We’ve changed too. After drinking coffee in dozens of countries around the world, we’ve developed heightened appreciation for solid roasting, inspired latte art and friendly service. Ox Coffee offers all three plus bagels on the weekend. Plus, we can now tether our computers so free internet isn’t so important.

Pro Tip
Leave your laptop at home when you visit Ox Coffee. In case you missed the memo, the Queen Village cafe doesn’t have free WiFi.

Ox Coffee is located at 616 S 3rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

7. Suprema Coffee Roastery

Owner of Suprema Coffee in Philadelhia
Stefan Radivojevic maintains a hands-on presence at Suprema Coffee Roastery. The gregarious owner began his roasting journey by roasting beans in his home oven. He’s since graduated to roasting beans a a commercial coffee roaster. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We felt positive vibes when we entered Suprema Coffee Roastery on Pine Street. Part of that vibe came from the cafe’s stylish design. The other part came from owner Stefan Radivojevic who shared his obsession for coffee with us.

As we learned, the curious culinarian started his coffee journey by buying raw ‘green’ beans on Amazon and roasted them in, of all places, his home oven. Yes – you can do that too. He also taught himself latte art. Finally, he opened his compact Pine Street cafe in February of 2020.

Coffees at Suprema Coffee in Philadelhia
Sometimes we crave hot coffee and sometimes we crave cold coffee. We satisfied both cravings at Suprema Coffee Roastery. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

No longer roasting beans purchased from Amazon at home, Radivojevic roasts single-origin beans sourced directly from Brazil and Colombia inside the cafe. He also roasts a blend of Ethiopian and Brazilian beans to create the cafe’s Supreme Crėma blend.

Coffee connoisseurs flock to buy bags of Radivojevic’s beans. Many stay to enjoy pastries as well as crafted drinks that transcend the typical cappuccino and latte.

Pro Tip
Go big and try one of Suprema Coffee Roastery’s signature drinks. Options include the iced Mochly (two shots of espresso, Ghirardelli dark chocolate and Oatly oat milk), the Breakfast Latte (two shots of espresso and oat milk) and the Red Eye (black coffee with two shots of espresso).

Suprema Coffee Roastery is located at 1511 Pine St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, United States.

8. Rowhome Coffee

Barista at Rowhouse Coffee in Philadelphia
Harry Winkler brewed our cappuccino with special beans and special care at Rowhome Coffee’s original Fitler Square location. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Hugh Morretta and Eli Shaika opened the original Rowhome Coffee in late 2020 with passions for both specialty coffee and comfort food. Clearly their passions have hit a nerve since they now have a second cafe on the other side of town.

Ironically, neither cafe is actually located in a row house. The original Fitler Square cafe occupies a former bar and the East Kensington cafe was originally a pharmacy. However, both cafes channel the spirit of Philadelphia by serving soft pretzel sandwiches in addition to specialty coffee.

Coffee and Sandwich at Rowhouse Coffee in Philadelphia
Rowhome’s coffee and soft pretzel sandwich combo is quickly becoming a Philadelphia classic. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Much of Rowhome Coffee’s buzz centers around its soft pretzel sandwiches, but coffee remains the heart of the cafe’s operation. This should be no surprise since the cafe is named Rowhome Coffee and not Rowhome Pretzel.

Considering Morretta’s role as a roaster at La Colombe (see below), it’s also no surprise that the cafe exclusively sources its beans from the Philadelphia roasting behemoth. And, since Morretta has the inside track on special single origin beans, this is a good thing.

Pro Tip
Pair your coffee with a soft pretzel sandwich. Filling options include a variety of cream cheeses as well as roast beef, turkey, cheese and plant based sausage.

Rowhome Coffee has multiple Philadelphia cafes. The original cafe is located at 2536 Pine St, Philadelphia, PA 19103, United States.

9. Ultimo Coffee

Coffee at Ultimo in Philadelphia
While it’s debatable whether the baristas at Ultimo Coffee craft the ultimate Philly coffees, there’s no debate that we enjoyed drinking this particular Ultimo cappuccino. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The owners of Ultimo Coffee weren’t being braggadocious when they named their original Newbold coffee shop. Instead, it just so happens that the owners’ last name is Ultimo.

Pre-dating Elixr by a year, Ultimo Coffee sourced its beans from Counter Culture Coffee in the early days. A lot has changed since then. Not only does the Philly coffee pioneer have locations in Germantown, Graduate Hospital and Rittenhouse, but it also roasts its beans inside the original cafe.

Customers can sample Ultimo’s beans in a variety of iterations. We typically order cappuccinos but many locals swear by the cafe’s espresso pulls. You can’t go wrong either way

Pro Tip
Don’t hesitate to order baklava if the sweet treat is available during your visit.

Ultimo Coffee has multiple Philadelpha cafes. The original cafe is located at 1900 S 15th St, Philadelphia, PA 19145, United States.

10. Persimmon Coffee

Owners of Persimmon in Philadelphia
Sawyer Beckley and Kai Talim were fully focused when they crafted our seasonal latte in Persimmon Coffee’s compact space. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

It would be easy to compare Persimmon Coffee to the shiny orange fruit with the same name. After all, the coffee shop sprouted in Fishtown in the summer of 2022 after growing its popularity at pop-ups all over town. Plus, the versatile fruit has Asian roots just like two of Persimmon’s three owners.

But falling back on such an easy comparison is a tempting cop out. This is a coffee shop that’s more than a gimmick or a cute name.

Specialty Drink at Persimmon in Philadelphia
Our seasonal latte was a pleasant sipper thanks to ingredients like homemade rosemary syrup, blackstrap molasses, whiskey barrel & cranberry bitters, yuzu citrus rind powder, espresso and steamed milk. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Sawyer Beckley, Chaereen Pak and Kai Talim met while working at Function Coffee Labs (see below) and later launched their coffee concept in 2020. The experienced trio roasts their beans in Chestnut Hill before seeking balance in each and every cup. They also source laminated pastries from Bloomsday Cafe and organic tea from Hibiki-An.

Despite its urban location, Persimmon’s sunlit space and Talim’s meticulous attention to detail reminded us of one of our favorite coffee shops – April Coffee Store & Showroom in Copenhagen. This is a coffee operation we’ll be watching with curious eyes.

Pro Tip
Stop next door for an ice cream cone at Weckerly’s Ice Cream. Our seasonal scoop of caramel corn ice cream was fantastic.

Persimmon Coffee is located at 11 West Girard Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19123, United States.

11. Three Graces Coffee Co.

Three Graces Coffee in Philadelphia
It’s difficult not to smile when next to Three Graces Coffee Co’s magenta Victoria Arduino White Eagle espresso machine. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Yulee Park clearly had a vision when she opened Three Graces Coffee Co. in 2000. Not only did she transform a former Queen Village bank building into a charming cafe space, but she also installed a magenta espresso machine for an extra bit of pizzazz.

Little touches are everywhere from the cafe’s wall length mural and mod light fixtures that descend from its ceiling. Those same touches apply to menu items like beignets and croissants plus tempting baked goods from the Mighty Bread Company.

Coffee at Three Graces Coffee in Philadelhia
The heart art on top of our Honey Lavender Latte sums up our feelings about this tasty beverage we drank at Three Graces Coffee Co. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Drink choices run the gamut from simple to elaborate with none more intriguing that the cafe’s signature Twix Latte crafted with both caramel and chocolate syrup. However, it was the Honey Lavender Latte which won our attention and infatuation. A seasonal special at the time of our initial visit, it has since graduated to permanent status.

Pro Tip
Sip your coffee inside or outside unless you’re in a rush.

Three Graces Coffee Co. is located at 719 E Passyunk Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

12. Shot Tower Coffee

Shot Tower Coffee in Philadelphia
Shot Tower Coffee has been a vibrant part of the Queen Village neighborhood for over a decade. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Located in Queen Village since 2010, Shot Tower Coffee is a sentimental favorite since it was our go-to neighborhood cafe for years. Though several coffee shops were located closer to our Bella Vista house, we usually trekked nine minutes to Shot Tower for our daily jolt of joe when we wanted to drink locally.

Back then, Collin Shapiro and Jonathon Zilber (now the co-owners of Philly Style Bagels) crafted our coffees with beans sourced from Counter Culture. Today, the cafe sources its beans from Elixr. But, other than the staffing and bean changes, much has remained the same at Shot Tower Coffee over the past decade.

Coffee at Shot Tower Coffee in Philadelphia
We’re rarely disappointed when we order coffee at Shot Tower Coffee. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The baristas at Shot Tower continue to craft good cappuccinos and lattes – that’s a given and the primary reason we keep returning to the cafe. We also appreciate the cafe’s natural light and communal environment.

Pro Tip
Shot Tower offers a frequent buyer program for regular customers. Just ask the barista to put your information in the cafe’s system. As we’ve discovered, after years being gone from Philly and returning periodically to eat and see family, there’s no time limit for using your balance.

Shot Tower Coffee is located at 542 Christian St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

13. Menagerie Coffee

Coffee at Menagerie Coffee in Philadelphia
Sometimes we’re simply happy to sip a cappuccino at Menagerie. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Menagerie has been celebrating independence since it opened its original cafe in Old City in 2014. This statement sounds dramatic but hear us out…

For starters, Menagerie is located in the neighborhood where America’s founding fathers solidified the fledgling country’s independence from England. Equally important, the cafe’s female founders have remained committed to independently sourcing quality beans from roasters like Philadelphia’s Elixr and Minneapolis’ Dogwood Coffee Co.

Coffee Beans at Menagerie Coffee in Philadelphia
Menagerie has been sourcing beans from Dagwood Coffee Co. for also a decade. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Back in the day, Menagerie was our go-to coffee shop when we craved a good cup of coffee while wandering through Old City or driving to I-95. Sometimes we’d linger with a yogurt and other times we’d grab a cookie to go. After recently returning, we’re pleased to report that Menagerie’s coffee is just as good as ever.

Pro Tip
Since parking can be difficult in Old City, consider following Philly music star Kurt Vile and park in a loading zone if you’re traveling by car. Be sure to adhere to the time limit since PPA agents are very good at their job.

Menagerie Coffee is located at 18 S 3rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106, United States as well as in The Bourse Food Hall.

14. Herman’s Coffee

Owner of Hermans Coffee in Philadelphia
Mat Falco channels channeled his grandfather Herman when he opened Herman’s Coffee in Pennsport with partner Amy. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We love a good story as much as we love good coffee and Herman’s Coffee delivers both.

Owners Mat and Amy Falco dared to be different when they opened Herman’s Coffee in 2017 in a former auto repair shop and named the Pennsport cafe after Mat’s grandfather Herman. They also eschewed regular chairs in favor of red lounge chairs – ‘Grandpa’ Herman’s chair of choice.

While those chairs are still there and have become part of the cafe’s logo, much has changed at Herman’s Cafe…

At a crossroad during the pandemic, Mat and Amy started selling obscure products that they loved from all over the world. Lo and behold, the neighbors loved them too.

For us, seeing the market at Hermans’ Coffee was a trip down memory lane. We could only smile while viewing shelves stocked with the likes of Mieli Thun honey from Trentino, Jose Gourmet fish tins from Portugal, Goo Goo Clusters from Nashville, Tony’s Chocolonely chocolate bars from Amsterdam, Naive chocolate bars from Lithuania and Marou chocolate bars from Vietnam.

Daryl at Hermans Coffee in Philadelphia
Daryl was all smiles as he sipped an iced latte in one of Herman’s Coffee’s red lawn chairs. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Mat doesn’t just choose food items. He also roasts coffee onsite and serves it in creative ways. His latte flavors include caramel, mocha, lavender lemon and rose while his specialty drinks go beyond espresso tonics to include proprietary concoctions worth a sip.

Pro Tip
Check out Herman Coffee’s pop-up schedule so that you can support local chefs while eating tasty food.

Herman’s Coffee is located at 1313 S 3rd St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

15. Vibrant Coffee Roasters & Bakery

Cappuccino with on Colorful Chair at Vibrant Coffee Roasters and Bakery in Philadelphia
We propped this Vibrant cappuccino on a vibrantly colored chair before our first sips. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The owners of Bella Vista’s Function Coffee Lab’s (see below) opened Vibrant Coffee Roasters & Bakery in June of 2021 in Rittenhouse Square. Some customers come to the dual purpose cafe to drink coffee that’s brewed with a choice of dark or light beans. Others come to eat the freshly baked sourdough pastries that are baked in the compact space. Most come to do both.

Cinnamon Bun at Vibrant Coffee Roasters and Bakery in Philadelphia
Topped with a generous dollop of icing, this sourdough cinnamon was more than big enough to share. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Following the crowd, we ordered a massive sourdough cinnamon bun to go with our cappuccinos. It proved to be a solid combination. Beyond cinnamon buns, other bakery options include freshly baked bagels and croissants.

Pro Tip
Be aware that Vibrant is a compact cafe with just a handful of outdoor tables and an inside bar that only seats four. That being said, it’s just a few steps from comfortable park benches in Rittenhouse Square.

Vibrant Coffee Roasters & Bakery is located at 222 W Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, PA 19103, United States.

16. Rival Bros. Coffee Bar

Coffee at Rival Brothers in Philadelphia
Our cappuccino at Rival Bros. Coffee Bar rivaled its Philadelphia coffee peers. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

You might think that Rival Bros. Coffee Bar is owned by two brothers with the last name Rival but you would be wrong. Instead, this Philadelphia coffee company is owed by two friends with the surnames of Adams and Pileggi.

However, you’re on the money if you suspect that the duo has culinary clout. One owner is a former chef and the other is a La Colombe alum.

After operating a mobile coffee truck for three years, the ‘brothers’ permanently parked the truck in 2014 when they opened their original cafe on Lombard Street. There’s now another Rival Bros. cafe in South Philly plus a roastery in northeast Philly.

The two cafes rival each other in terms of style and substance. Both offer beverages like kombucha and nitro cold brew in addition to typical brews and serve tasty treats sourced from local bakeries.

Pro Tip
There’s no need to request a double shot. That’s how drinks are automatically crafted at Rival Bros. Coffee Bar.

Rival Bros. Coffee Bar has multiple Philadelphia cafes. The original cafe is located at 2400 Lombard St, Philadelphia, PA 19146, United States.

17. Cake & Joe

Owners of Cake and Joe in Philadelphia
Cake and Joe owners Sarah Qi and Trista Tang welcomed us like friends when we made our impromptu visit at the Pennsport cafe. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Open since December 2020, Cake & Joe stands out from the pack by specializing in both coffee and cakes. But not just any cakes. These cakes are more like something you would eat at patisseries in Paris or Tokyo than at a typical Philly coffee shop.

Owners Sarah Qi and Trista Tang grew up in China but they clearly understand Philadelphia hospitality. The duo runs their Pennsport cafe with the goal of making people smile. In fact, the cafe’s motto is Bake | Brew | Smile. And, in a move which we approve, they’ve incorporated Asian items like calpis (a Japanese soft drink) and congee to the menu

Coffee and Desserts at Cake and Joe in Philadelphia
Sweet treats like pistachio mousse, coffee mousse and key lime cheese cake paired well with our flat white and (not pictured) orange cold brew. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Sure, you can go to Cake & Joe just for coffee but we don’t recommend it. It’s not that the cafe’s coffee brewed with La Colombe beans isn’t good. Rather, this is a cafe where you’ll want to linger with a beautiful piece of cake or enjoy afternoon tea.

Pro Tip
Cake & Joe offers an eclectic brunch menu replete with special desserts.

Cake & Joe has multiple locations. We visited the original cafe located at 1401 E Moyamensing Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

18. Alchemy Coffee

Barista at Alchemy Coffee in Philadelphia
We always appreciate it when a cafe owner personally crafts our cappuccinos. Chris S. provided this service during our visit at Alchemy Coffee. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Philadelphia isn’t the first city to have a cafe named after the process of transforming something in a mysterious or impressive way. Other cities with cafes named Alchemy include Cape Town, Hong Kong, London, Richmond and Salt Lake City.

However, Philadelphia’s Alchemy Coffee is the only one of the bunch that completes this task using Elixr beans. And, since Elixr roasts the best beans in Philadelphia, it’s a differentiator that we support.

Coffee at Alchemy Coffee in Philadelphia
Despite their simple heart art, our cappuccinos at Alchemy Coffee were spot on the mark. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The Rittenhouse cafe’s stark coloring and minimalist design elements reminded us more of coffee shops in Copenhagen than those in Philadelphia. During our visit, Alchemy’s tables were filled with millennial customers, all drinking coffee and working on laptops.

Also during our visit, the enthusiastic owners, both named Chris, completed our experience by personally crafting our cappuccinos and chatting with us about one of our favorite topics – coffee.

Pro Tip
Try a new flavor by adding mint to your brew at Alchemy Coffee.

Alchemy Coffee is located at 119 S. 21st Street, Philadelphia PA, 19103, United States.

19. Cogito Coffee

Barista at Cogito Coffee in Philadelphia
Travis Taylor crafted our cappuccino with finesse at Cogito’s first American cafe in Philadelphia. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

You could have knocked us down with a feather when we first saw the Cogito sign on South 12th Street. We literally did a double take since we immediately recognized the name of our favorite Croatian coffee shop. A quick google search confirmed that the two Cogito’s were indeed the same Cogito’s.

Matija Hrkać and Matija Belković opened Cogito in Zagreb in 2014. Three years later, we were regulars at three different Zagreb Cogito cafes during our two-month stint in the Croatian capital. Those cafes were happy places where we chatted with baristas and drank great coffee.

Flat White and Art at Cogito Coffee in Philadelphia
We reminisced about our time in Zagreb when we drank this cappuccino at Cogito in Philadelphia. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

A Cogito in Philadelphia? It seemed too good to be true. And, at first, maybe it was. We were disappointed during our initial pandemic-era visit by both the Philly Cogito’s vibe as well as its coffee. Those were bizarre times and we figured we’d give the 12th Street coffeeshop a second spin.

Returning in 2022 was different. With its colorful Croatian art and bags of coffee imported from the Balkan nation lining its shelves, Cogito’s first American coffee shop felt more like the Zagreb version. Adding to our positive experience, light streamed through the urban cafe’s large picture windows and the skilled barista was friendly and sociable. More important, our cappuccinos, crafted with Brazilian beans, were smooth and flavorful.

Pro Tip
Order a Chaga Latte made with two espresso shots, fine mushroom powder, beetroot, sugar and cinnamon if you’re in an adventurous mood.

Cogito Coffee is located at 105 S 12th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, United States.

20. Function Coffee Labs

Function Coffee Labs in Philadelphia
Function Coffee Lab’s spot across from Bardascino Park is a green oasis in Philadelphia urban landscape. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Function Coffee Labs is a Philadelphia coffee shop that proudly embraces science in its quest to craft and serve excellent coffee. Not surprisingly, co-owner Ross Nickerson is a mechanical engineer.

We might have been regulars at Function Coffee had the timing been different. Instead, the cafe debuted in April of 2016, just two months after we left its Bella Vista neighborhood. Nickerson opened the cafe with his fiance (now wife) Megan McCusker in a spot that previously housed a parade of cafes. It says a lot that their cafe is the one that stuck.

Coffee at Function Coffee Labs in Philadelphia
Isaiah Zagar’s mosaic added an artistic touch to our scientifically prepared cappuccino. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

The science-friendly cafe originally sourced beans from out-of-state roasters but now uses beans roasted locally by sister company Vibrant Coffee Roasters (see above). Its house roast typically incorporates beans grown in Central and South America while its ‘lab line’ features boutique beans grown around the world.

You’ll probably want to order Function’s ‘coffee shot’ – a true synthesis of science and coffee. Nickerson used all of his skills to engineer this shot that’s both smooth and satisfying. Why not give it a shot?

Pro Tip
Don’t skip the cafe’s pastries which are made in house.

Function Coffee Labs is located at 1001 S 10th St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

21. La Colombe Coffee Roasters

La Colombe Flagship Store in Philadelphia
La Colombe was a Philadelphia cafe before it became a national coffee company. Despite its transition from local coffee shop to national chain, the Philadelphia flagship location is a fine spot to break for a cup of coffee. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

La Colombe was one of our gateways to better coffee until we outgrew the company’s dark roasting style. Todd Carmichael opened the original La Colombe in 1994 before he found fame and fortune with the Travel Channel and later sold the coffee operation to Chobani. With more than 30 locations in cities across the US, La Colombe is now a national powerhouse when it comes to coffee.

Coffee at La Colombe Flagship Store in Philadelphia
Love or hate the coffee at La Colombe, there’s no denying that its presentation is on point. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Even though the original cafe is located just off of Rittenhouse Square, the company’s flagship location/roastery is in Fishtown. In a sign of the times, some of its beans are now roasted more lightly than was the case a decade ago.

Latte Taps at La Colombe in Philadelphia
Latte is always on draft at La Colombe’s flashship Fishtown location. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Pro Tip
Try a draft latte when you visit La Colombe in Fishtown. The cafe’s signature caffeinated beverage is delightfully refreshing.

La Colombe Coffee Roasters has multiple cafes in Philadelphia. The flagship cafe is located at 1335 Frankford Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19125, United States.

22. Bohdi Coffee

Cappuccino at Bodhi in Philadelphia
We drank these cappuccinos at Bodhi during a shopping expedition at Philadelphia’s Headhouse Farmer’s Market. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

We felt enlightened when we first visited Bodhi Coffee in 2010 and not just because bodhi translates to enlightenment. This is the cafe where we first drank pour over coffees and it’s also the spot where we first drank coffee crafted with Stumptown Coffee Roasters beans. We’ve since enjoyed Stumptown in its home city of Portland as well as in Chicago and New York.

A second location followed a few years later but that one didn’t stand the test of time. Instead, Bodhi Coffee’s owners chose to focus their attention on the original cafe situated inside a historic 18th century Society Hill building. Its a cosy spot with plenty of charm. Plus, it’s conveniently located next to Headhouse Square.

Though Bodhi Coffee’s owners haven’t wavered from their affection for Stumptown, they now source some of their beans from PT’s Coffee Roasting Co. While those roasters aren’t local, Bodhi’s baking partners are all in or near Philly. Continuing the local theme, co-owner Tom Henneman is a key partner of Philadelphia’s Federal Donuts along with Steve Cook and über-chef Michael Solomonov.

Pro Tip
Bring a canvas shopping bag if you plan to combine your Sunday morning visit with a shopping trip at the Headhouse Farmer’s Market.

Bohdi Coffee is located at 410 S 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

23. Jiggy Coffee

Shelves at Jiggy Coffee in Philadelphia
Jiggy’s simple decor includes a maneki-neko which is also known as a Japanese lucky cat. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Will Smith may have gotten jiggy in West Philly back in the day, but Jiggy Coffee has been doing its thing in Center City since 2022. To be clear, that thing is crafting specialty coffee drinks with beans roasted by Paper Planes in Washington, DC.

Don’t assume that Jiggy’s owners, Jonathan Lee and Jacalyn Shou, are new to the Philadelphia coffee scene. They paid their coffee dues at Old City Coffee, a coffee shop that pre-dates Jiggy Cafe by more than three decades.

Cappuccino at Jiggy Coffee in Philadelphia
How you get jiggy is up to you. We got jiggy at Jiggy Coffee by drinking this cappuccino. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Another thing not to assume is that Lee and Shou source all of their products from outside of Philadelphia. Instead, at the time of our visit, the cafe was serving baked goods sourced from four Philly-based operations – Au Fournil, Crust Vegan Bakery, High Fidelity Bakery and Kismet Bagels.

Pro Tip
Order a London Fog if you can’t choose between Early Grey tea or a creamy latte. It’s the best of both worlds.

Jiggy Coffee is located at 1000 Pine Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, United States.

24. Lombard Cafe

Lombard Cafe in Philadelphia
Lombard Cafe’s shabby chic space is both quirky and comfortable. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

With its mishmash of furniture and a wall covered with mirrors in various shapes and sizes, Society Hill’s Lombard Cafe is the kind of cafe that we would have surely visited when we lived nearby. Had that happened, we would have brought our laptops to the homey cafe and lingered all afternoon drinking cappuccinos and eating Philly muffins stuffed with eggs and cheese.

That didn’t happen as we left the neighborhood a few years too soon.

Cappuccinos at Lombard Cafe in Philadelphia
We ‘hearted’ these heart-topped cappuccinos at Lombard Cafe. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Jordan Caulfield and Jasmine Taibi have packed a lot into their compact space and we’re not just talking about the cafe’s decor. Food options include croissants, donuts, sandwiches and, not surprisingly, avocado toast.

Caulfield and Taibi also craft a range of coffee drinks with ReAnimator beans and spruce them up with flavors like lavender and honey cinnamon. Additional beverage choices include seasonal drinks like the intriguing Maple Shakerato made with two shots of espresso, milk and Vermont maple syrup that was on offer at the time of our visit.

Pro Tip
Order a seasonal salad to go with your seasonal beverage.

Lombard Cafe is located at 542 Lombard Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147, United States.

25. Nook Bakery & Coffee Bar

Barista at Nook Bakery and Coffee Bar in Philadelphia
Edna Caro smiled as she poured our coffee at Nook Bakery & Coffee Bar. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Always game to try new coffee shops, we high-tailed it to Nook Bakery & Coffee Bar when a fellow coffee enthusiast at Elixr (see above) recommended the ‘new’ cafe to us. As it turns out, Nook is far from new. The Rittenhouse Square cafe was just new to us.

Open since 2010 on 20th Street near Sansom, the cafe’s history goes back to 2005 when Edna and Michael Caro opened their original Philly cafe. However, the cafe didn’t join coffee’s current wave until the duo started roasting small batches of beans in 2017.

Coffees and Dessert at Nook Bakery and Coffee Bar in Philadelphia
We paired our coffees Nook coffees with a Nook pastry. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Despite its Rittenhouse Square neighborhood, Nook isn’t fancy. Instead, its space looks like a working laboratory. Besides baking sweet treats for both humans and dogs, the duo roasts small batches of beans “1.5 pounds at at time” which they package and sell in small, medium and large bags.

Pro Tip
Pre-order a bag of dog treats. Your dog deserves it.

Nook Bakery & Coffee Bar is located at 15 S 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103, United States.

Additional Philadelphia Coffee Shops

Strawberry Iced Latte at Elixr in Philadelphia
There’s always time for one more coffee in Philadelphia unless you’d rather buy a bag of beans. We drank this strawberry latte at Elixr. | Image: ©2foodtrippers

Consider the following Philadelphia coffee shops if you’re thirsty for even more joe when you visit the City of Brotherly Love:

Frequently Asked Questions

Is coffee popular in Philadelphia?

Yes. Coffee is popular all over the US and Philadelphia is no exception.

How much does coffee cost in Philadelphia?

Philadelphia coffee prices are in line with prices in other US cities. Expect to spend $2-3 basic cup of coffee and more for a quality flat white in Philadelphia.

Does Philadelphia have third wave coffee shops?

Yes. Philadelphia may have been initially slow to embrace coffee’s wave but it has caught up in a big way.

What are the best third wave coffee shops in Philadelphia?

Top Philadelphia third wave coffee shops include Elix and, ReAnimator. Try them both plus more to find your favorite.

Is Starbucks in Philadelphia?

Yes. Philadelphia’s first Starbucks location opened in 1995. There are now dozens of Starbucks cafes in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas.

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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 the 2foodtrippers website. Since launching the site in 2012, they’ve traveled to over 40 countries in their quest to bring readers their unique taste of the world.

Disclosures

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.

Funding
We purchased and imbibed the drinks featured in this article.

Original Publication Date: June 27, 2022
Republication Date: January 7, 2023

Pritti Bhatia

Tuesday 6th of September 2022

Hi, I just read your article on Philadelphia’s best coffee shops. My husband and i love coffee and try exploring new coffee shops around here and beyond. Happy to see we’ve been to all of your mentioned cafes. Just to let you know Bodhi cafe seems to have been closed for a few months now, we just went by there yesterday. Other places worth mentioning are Shot Tower coffee, Lombard Coffee, Thank you Thank you cafe, OXO and Persimmon. Cody from Thank you used to train baristas and Kai at Persimmon used to work at Function Coffee labs before starting his own pop up and now a proper brick and mortar cafe. Hope you find this helpful, we log all our cafe visits on our instagram page #thecoffeeguys2021 do check us out.

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Sunday 11th of September 2022

Thanks for your comment. We were recently back in Philadelphia and will be updating this guide soon. Stay tuned and stay caffeinated!

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