What goes into the very best coffee shops? Certainly, making their own hand-roasted beans is a factor. Equally certain is their friendly servers. A comfortable atmosphere with chairs that are meant just for relaxing also helps. Perhaps also some creature comforts like newspapers, magazines and books to read. A couple of tasty morsels to eat is also a plus. With some or most of that, we can relax.
There is a long list of Florida coffee shops that will provide you with all of these necessary features. From Margate to Miami, stop into one of these 10 coffee shops in the Sunshine State to start your day.
If you don’t believe us, Complex Magazine wrote, “If you want a college coffee spot that is cool above all else, this may be the one.” They praised it for making coffee into an art form and for serving dishes like blue velvet cupcakes. Also, it’s easy-going environment. Anthony Rue only opened this place after a year of research. He looked at what are sometimes known as the “Holy Trinity” of coffee houses: coffee, tea and chocolate. Rue is known as a coffee fanatic, steeped in the subject that he often discusses with customers. It’s no surprise that his staff is equally passionate. They spend weeks in training before serving and are encouraged to compete in contests. What’s coffee without entertainment? Boring. No way of that happening because there are regular readings from local creative writing students (Rue studied literature in college).
If you get a café con leche you will not sleep until the year 2020 or so. But joking aside, they take their coffee seriously here. The place is located in a no-frills building. Inside, there are only a few tables, to create an intimate atmosphere. It dates back to 1921 when Spanish immigrant Carlos Menendez founded the Naviera Coffee Mills after the shipping line that brought him to America. He worked days in a cigar factory, and roasted coffee at night, bringing them door to door by bicycle. Today, the coffee house near the Columbia Restaurant supplies coffee to many businesses. You can smell it from far away. It’s well-known for all-around excellence.
This place turns up in various votes for best coffee houses in North Florida and even in polls that take in larger areas. They roast their own beans, of course. All the typical ways of preparing coffee are routine, but they are big supporters of single drip coffee served as it should be to purists: black. That’s the proper way to appreciate the intricacy of the roasting beans. The menu also offers delicious fresh pastries. Live music provides entertainment, and it’s a popular gathering place. Beer and wine are also served.
If you drink coffee at many places such as Fresh Market in the Fort Lauderdale area, you might be sipping on their Cuban blend. Kana roasts its coffee on site Cuban style and distributes to various vendors but you can get it here. They even instruct customers on how to make the best cup at Kaña University. In common with others, it uses top quality beans. But Kaña points out that it roasts and blends its product differently, a method known as “estilo” that traces back to Havana roots. The result is strong and deeply dark in color, but without any burnt or bitter aftertaste. The site specializes in Latin American coffees, best described as “bold.” They also serve sandwiches and pastries.
No, you don’t have to attend a university to get a great cup of coffee. Since you already know what felicitous means, you can expect some of the same qualities of Volta. An enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff for menu and drinks serve at an older building near University of South Florida. Local art on the walls adds to the pleasures. A specialty is frappes but many recommend the chocolate chai latte.
You go to Alaska for many reasons (perhaps a cruise to see the glaciers). But coffee? Try it. You’ll like it. The reasons include the coffee but mostly the food, or the variety of choices. Alaska started in Fairbanks more than 20 years ago. Their location here reflects other college-like coffee qualities: they are near the Johnson and Wales Miami campus. There’s a wood-fired oven for pizza, but that hardly starts to complete the menu offerings. Everything from sandwiches (veggie to Italian) and traditional main dishes such as beef lasagna and chicken pot pie. Even simple green salads. Little down-home touches also: hand-written menu and coffee in real cups. And a memorable slogan, “Celebrating coffee, the wine of the tropics.”
Organizers say they wanted a college-town coffeehouse. And that is what it has become. A blogger says it is “eclectic” and “funky.” Fridays and Saturdays are entertainment nights with open mics and up to a dozen or so local comedians. The website warns, “Like Smurfs, they can be a little blue.” The coffee bar has free Wi-Fi, and breakfast and lunch foods are hand-prepared. With excellent fresh soups, veggie and vegan choices among wraps and paninis, Anzac cookies and a drive-through option, this place is a can’t miss.
Everyone says they roast their own beans but not many places also farm them. Talk about quality control. Here, they serve beans grown from the long-standing family farm in Colombia, roasted in-house. Most of us can relate to what they say on the site, “Just like you, we need a great cup of coffee to start our day, pass the time or for that afternoon boost.” Eternity sources their single origin coffees from all over the world, including the nutrient-rich Colombian versions. The coffee company maintains control through the entire process. They also sell home brewing equipment. The result, “Make our specialty coffees fresh in your own kitchen even if you don’t live in Miami,” the site says.
Self-styled “leader of the underground caffeinated culture.” There are frequent painting shows and photographic exhibitions as well as poetry readings and other live events. Their motto, “We proudly serve intelligentsia coffee.” Well-informed staffers are always ready to add to customer education with the differences between French press and plain drip coffee. The shop here uses a fancy and expensive Japanese machine to produce coffee. Iced versions are a specialty. House made syrups and whipped cream are worth bragging about. Organic teas are offered to non-coffee drinkers and the pastries are easily recommended.
This is a place known for its LGBT-friendly atmosphere. Friendly to all members of the community, in fact. It has become a popular gathering place for everyone since opening in 1996. Also, a favorite of night-owl coffee lovers. Sacred is known for its support of artists and musicians performing original works. “We strive to maintain a very chill and cool atmosphere that welcomes everyone,” says its website. There are always DIY classes as well as community group meetings. As for refreshments, natural ingredients prevail. Most coffees and tea are organic. Almond milk is offered as an alternative to cow’s products.