Discover the TOP 5 Chicago coffee shops. All have stellar coffee with an A+ atmosphere. I've tried over 20 awesome coffee spots and these are my favorites!
Chicago not only offers a long list of excellent coffee shops and cafes, but you'll also find coffee spots that have space to sit, work, chat with friends, and just hang for a while. Something that is hard to come by in similar megacities like NYC. Over many visits to Chicago, I've tried over twenty solid options and have narrowed that list down to my five favorite coffee shops in Chicago.
TOP 5 Chicago Coffee Shops
1. Ipsento 606 – Wicker Park (several other locations)
One of the best Chicago coffee shops for a hipster vibe
Ipsento has three locations and sources some of the best coffee in Chicago with a focus on single origin micro-lot beans that change seasonally. The Wicker Park location (called Ipsento 606) is my favorite of the three. It has a completely different feel from the other two locations with a modern finish, clean and uncluttered space, lots of white and earth tones, and large windows bringing plenty of natural light.
The Wicker Park location is known not only for the coffee but also their mini donuts. This location also transitions to a full bar in the evening. You will find plenty of locals working and spending time here and a constant flow of espresso lovers grabbing their coffee and pastries to-go. Ipsento was an easy pick for one the best Chicago coffee shops!
2. La Colombe – Lincoln Park (several other locations)
One of the best coffee shops in Chicago for Nitro cold brew and nitro lattes
I was hooked the moment I tasted La Colombe's draft latte. A concept where the milk is nitrogenated to create a frothy cold latte. If you prefer your latte heavier on the coffee and less on the milk, you can custom order asking for a tan which is half nitro latte and half cold brew.
La Colombe recently upped their game and now includes Oatly oatmilk nitro lattes on draft at all locations. A reason to love them more if you are dairy sensitive or Vegan.
I prefer the location on Armitage street in Lincoln Park. It has more space to sit and you'll find people hanging around chatting or working. Beware, they only offer wifi during the weekdays.
3. Fairgrounds Cafe – Wicker Park
One of the best Chicago coffee shops for healthy bites and coffee/teas on draft
Several coffees (nitro and regular), teas, and kombucha on tap make Fairgrounds Cafe a unique stop. There is plenty of space for seating, the design is homey with leather booths and greenery, and the menu has a full list of healthy items.
4. Caffe Umbria – Downtown/North Side and Wicker Park/Bucktown
One of the best coffee shops in Downtown Chicago
The downtown location is always buzzing with activity and seems to be a favorite with locals living or working in the area. Caffe Umbria’s branded beans ensure high quality and taste.
The downtown space isn’t large but does offer a few small tables and counter seating at the window. There is also a small patio at the entrance. If you're downtown and looking for one of the best coffee shops in Chicago, Caffe Umbria is a winner.
The location in Wicker Park/Bucktown is a 9,000 sq. foot converted car barn and includes a roastery, cafe, coffee lab, and bright red mural. Great for pics!
5. Three Greens Market – Downtown/ North Side
One of the best Chicago coffee shops for space to spread out and a full food menu
A hip spot to stay a while and work from the look of the customers using the space. Three Greens Market includes several different spaces under one roof including a restaurant with a hot and cold salad bar, coffee shop, and grab-and-go market.
The coffee shop is off to the left side and feels like it has its own space. Several locals recommend Three Greens, which always means it’s a solid option. Comfy seating, lots of tables, and hipster feel.
Honorable Mentions for the best coffee shops in Chicago
Café Integral – Downtown/North Side
One of the best coffee shops in Chicago for a cozy atmosphere
I normally don’t go for hotel coffee shops, but the design and cozy feel of Café Integral earns it a spot on the list of the top Chicago coffee shops. The clientele seems to be a mix fo locals, tourists staying at the Freehand hotel, remote workers typing away on their laptops, and friends catching up. Try and grab a spot up the stairs in the back by the fireplace on those cold Chicago days.
Mojo - Downtown
One of the best coffee shops in downtown Chicago for bites and quality coffee...but no WiFi or outlets
The only reason Mojo doesn't make the list of top 5 Chicago coffee shops is there's no WiFi or electric outlets for those looking to work remotely. Don't let the location inside an office building fool you...it still has the look and feel of a very urban and sleek coffee shop.
Mojo started in New Zealand and offers the unique steampunk brewing method. It's like a reverse french press using a vacuum suction creating a delicious brew. The food is also on point. Try one of their many toast options including smoked salmon or braised beef cheek. The granola they offer is some of the best I've had.
Colectivo – Lincoln Park
Hands down the best Chicago coffee shop for patio weather
This Chicago coffee shop gets an honorable mention because it has an awesome patio. Colectivo is one of the best coffee shops in Chicago for when the weather is nice or you want a dog friendly patio, otherwise stick to the spots above.
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coffee addict? See my other coffee shop posts!
Are you a Chicago native? Which do you think are the best coffee shops in Chicago?