The Best Independent Coffee Shops in the Country

Like most people who spend their days behind a desk, we love our coffee. Last year, we were even inspired enough to make a mixtape about it. And if there’s one thing we know about people who feel strongly about coffee, it’s that they can also be really selective about it. While the world has been overrun with ubiquitous coffee-shop chains, it hasn’t shut out the best local businesses — the special breed of independent coffee house that draws loyal crowds with its style, charm, quirky staff, and often something more.

This month, we got our first taste of new Coffee-mate Natural Bliss — the all-natural way to add a splash of flavor to your brew — and it reminded us how much we appreciate the simplicity of coffee done right, the old-fashioned way. That’s the inspiration behind our roundup of some of the best coffee shops in the nation. We’ve got you covered from coast to coast with our list, but if you’re like us, you probably have even more favorites that we missed. Tell us what they are in the comments!

Check out our full roundup by clicking through the links below.

Black Gold
Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn

Black Gold is hands-down the coolest coffee shop/record store/antiques shop/taxidermy specialist in the world. Their cold-brewed iced coffee and iced tea with mint are delicious and refreshing, and they stock SCRATCHbread baked goodies. Deeee-lish. Plus, the staff is super friendly and knowledgeable, and will happily nerd out with you over the qualities of fresh brews, rare records, or estate jewelry, all of which they stock. – Leah Taylor