10 Coziest East Coast Coffee Shops
What is so alluring about a cozy coffee shop? Perhaps it's the comfortable chairs or the smell of fresh coffee. Maybe it’s the familiar sound of grinding espresso or the distant whirring of steamed milk. Likely, it’s the combination of caffeine, free WiFi, and a warm place to escape chilly weather. Here in the Northeast, we take our coffee shops seriously. Although we won’t pass up a "light and sweet" at Dunkin' Donuts, nothing beats a local café serving up fresh drip all day long. If you agree, check out our pick of the ten coziest coffee shops on the East Coast.
Onyx Tonics Speciality Coffee, Burlington, Vermont
Onyx Tonics has brought the concept of seasonality into the coffee world. Just as a farm-to-table restaurant would never serve tomatoes in January or asparagus in October, this Burlington-based coffee bar rotates its offerings on a weekly basis. The result is an ever-changing list of single-origin coffees that reflects the transitional nature of the seasons and the coffee plant. The interior space is cool and modern, but the bright artwork and pops of color will brighten your day as much as a maple latte.
126 College Street, Burlington, VT
Black Cat LES, New York, New York
Black Cat LES, a Lower East Side coffee shop and community space, can be described in one word — homey. From the worn furniture to the mile-high pile of board games, it bears more resemblance to a living room than it does a coffee shop. But that’s what makes it so great. Besides serving up coffee and light fare for hungry patrons, Black Cat LES invites all members of the community to gather and converse with like-minded people. Its nightly events are free of charge and vary from comedy shows to academic lectures.
172 Rivington Street, New York, NY
Coffee by Design, Portland, Maine
With three locations on the peninsula, Coffee by Design has been a Portland staple since 1994. Although you can’t go wrong with any location, our favorite is found in the increasingly-popular East Bayside neighborhood. With free parking outside and plenty of seating inside, this Diamond Street outpost is a gem. The interior offers up bar seating, comfy chairs, and small, communal tables that are perfect for laptops. Best of all, the glass windows into the roastery allow patrons to gain an inside look into the makings of their favorite beverage.
1 Diamond Street, Portland, ME
The Coffee Exchange, Providence, Rhode Island
A hotspot for college co-eds and coffee lovers alike, The Coffee Exchange is a well-known Providence hangout. Open since 1984, The Coffee Exchange hasn’t fallen victim to the minimalist fads that seem to be the standard for coffee shops these days. Instead, this dimly lit café favors dark wood and vintage lighting. No matter — the small tables always seem to be occupied. For those who buy their own beans, the bulk fair-trade coffee will make you feel like a kid in a candy store.
207 Wickenden Street, Providence, RI
Partner’s Coffee, Brooklyn, New York
Although a recent rebranding converted Toby’s Estate into Partner’s Coffee, the local chain remains much the same. Out of the five retail stores sprinkled throughout New York’s boroughs, the brand’s flagship store in Williamsburg is a fan favorite. The light-filled café combines the beauty of clean lines with the warmth of hardwood to exude a cozy, yet modern vibe. The Brooklyn outpost also offers a brew school for aspiring baristas who want to learn how to perfect their latte art.
125 North 6th Street, Brooklyn, NY
Koffee?, New Haven, Connecticut
Tucked away on a quiet side street in New Haven, Koffee? is equal parts cozy and eclectic. Long communal tables and plenty of outlets make it easy to get work done, while the groupings of plush furniture are ideal for a cup of joe and a chat. In addition to its atypical beverage offerings (Koffee Afterdark serves beer, wine, and cocktails after 3 p.m.), the café emanates an offbeat vibe. From the local art that adorns the wall to the question board filled with sticky notes, there’s plenty to look at while you wait for your iced americano.
104 Audubon Street, New Haven, CT
Trend Coffee and Teahouse, Montclair, New Jersey
Located inside the oldest standing house in Montclair, Trend Coffee and Teahouse has a vintage feel inside and out. The building, which is over 150 years old, boasts antique bay windows that allow for light to stream in on a sunny afternoon. Inside, the space is homey and comfortable with armchairs for lounging and bookshelves for perusing. Wednesdays are open mic night on the Trend Stage and the range of local performers will often draw a crowd.
411 Bloomfield Avenue, Montclair, NJ
Andala Coffee House, Cambridge, Massachusetts
The interior of this brick storefront in the heart of Central Square has an undeniably cozy feel with its bolstered seats, hand-woven rugs, and marble fireplace. Andala also happens to double as a hookah lounge and a Palestinian restaurant, which explains why the décor is laden with luxurious cushions and warm textures. The coffee shop portion puts a spin on your typical espresso, serving up Turkish coffee in traditional metal pots. Whether you’re ordering a latte, a hummus plate, or a hookah to share, you won’t regret spending an afternoon in a pile of cushions at this unique café.
286 Franklin Street, Cambridge, MA
Cup of Joe, Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Located on Market Street in the heart of downtown Portsmouth, Cup of Joe converted a historic pub into a modern-day coffee shop. The rustic interior is lined with dark wood and exposed brick, while the hanging chandeliers exude the perfect kind of mood on a rainy day. Patrons can belly up to the bar to watch baristas work their magic or to order something a bit stronger. Beer, kombucha, and prosecco are on tap behind the bar, in addition to all the conventional coffee shop fare.
31 Market Street, Portsmouth, NH
One Shot Cafe, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
In addition to being a purveyor of Stumptown Coffee, One Shot Cafe also serves up an amazing brunch. If that wasn’t enough reason to visit this Northern Liberties eatery, just wait until you see upstairs. The café’s upper floor contains a library nook that boasts fashionable leather sofas, rustic shelves flooded with books, and large picture windows. If you can snag a spot in this coveted corner, you’ll never want to leave.
217 West George Street, Philadelphia, PA
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