Your guide to St. Louis coffee shops
Coffee shops offer more than beverages: They’re a place to study for that crucial final, meet friends (human and non-human), or work on your novel. Or you might just want a really great cup of coffee or a superlative snack. Whatever you need, St. Louis has a coffee shop for that.
Latin American coffee spots
Brothers Patrick and Spencer Clapp opened Coffeestamp with the aim of serving coffee of the quality they enjoyed growing up in Honduras. Coffeestamp’s mission begins with the coffee beans themselves, and the Clapp brothers pride themselves on using ethically sourced beans from around the world. It’s hard to resist a coffee and an empanada for under $10 (we love the Dirty Horchata, iced), and harder still to limit yourself to one empanada.
2511 S. Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 314.797.8113, coffeestamp.com
LA FINCA COFFEE
La Finca’s original Eureka location was inspired by the look and feel of cafes in co-owner Alejandra Hagedorn’s native Colombia, and their new Grove location retains elements of that aesthetic in a more urban setting. Coffee highlights include the Tinto, a Colombian preparation combining black coffee with panela (a type of brown sugar), and the cafe de olla, which reflects co-owner John Hagedorn’s Mexican heritage. The Hagedorns plan to add more to eat, including tortas and arepas; for now, enjoy sweet empanadas and flaky pastries.
4440 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, 314.925.8588; 137 S. Central Ave., Eureka, 636.549.3478, coffeelafinca.com
This delightful cafe’s decor and chilled-out background music could persuade you that you’re drinking cafe de olla, infused with cacao, cinnamon, cardamom and piloncillo, on the Yucatan Peninsula, a few steps from the Caribbean. The menu of Mexican breakfasts and lunches – tamales, chilaquiles, sopes and more – allow you to prolong the reverie, and the drink selection includes espresso and latte flights, iced coffee drinks and cacao-based drinks like their xococoatl, first created by the Mayans.
5090 Delmar Blvd., St. Louis, 636.578.8321, brewtulum.com
TRE CUORI GELATERIA & ACAI
This Brazilian-owned cafe offers acai bowls and perfect Italian-style gelato with flavors including guava cheesecake, Belgian chocolate and mint-stracciatella. Other desserts include the popular Nonna’s carrot cake (which comes with two scoops of gelato), and there’s a selection of classic espresso drinks. We can’t think of a better place for an affogato (espresso poured over a scoop of gelato).
15877 Fountain Plaza Drive, Ellisville, 636.675.0507, trecuorigelateria.com
Great places to work or study
HARTFORD COFFEE CO.
This Tower Grove South mainstay is a case study in the coffee shop-as-community hub. It’s a welcoming gathering place for a diverse clientele, and you won’t be the only one bringing your laptop or textbooks. The “quiet room” at the back end of the patio is perfect for those who have come to work, but if you prefer ambient noise there’s nothing stopping you from camping out in the main cafe or on either of the two patios.
3974 Hartford St., St. Louis, 314.771.5282, hartfordcoffee.com
The booths on the second floor of this Tower Grove South stalwart are prime spots for studying solo or in a group. It also offers one of the city’s most inventive coffee lineups with an entire chalkboard dedicated to latte specials like Mo’s Monkey (a chocolate and banana latte), and drinks to shake you into life like the Mudslide (double strength coffee with sweetened condensed milk, sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg).
3606 Arsenal St., St. Louis, 314.865.2009, mokabescoffeehouse.com
GOSHEN COFFEE ROASTERS
Most trips to Soulard don’t result in productive work or study, but Edwardsville-based coffee purveyor Goshen Coffee bucks that trend with its new-ish outpost in the former Soulard Coffee Garden. The second floor is particularly serene, but you might also set up on the balcony or out on the patio downstairs.
910 Geyer Ave., St. Louis, 314.260.9100, goshencoffee.com
FIDDLEHEAD FERN CAFE
If the hum of conversation aids your ability to focus, this cute, bustling neighborhood cafe is the place for you. Think seasonal lattes with floral and herbal notes, pour-over coffees and tea lattes colored by ingredients like turmeric, ube and matcha. Their toasts are some of the best around, loaded with avocados or fruits, spreads, seeds, fresh greens and chopped nuts.
4066 Russell Blvd., St. Louis, 314.300.8111, fiddleheadferncafe.com
THE MUD HOUSE
One of the most attractive cafes in the city, this Cherokee Street mainstay provides a great meeting spot or a place to whip out your laptop and get some work done. If you’re looking for work-life balance, you can find it here: On weekdays, work with a maple spice latte and a bacon and cheddar scone or a grilled cheese; come back on Saturday or Sunday for waffles or French toast with mascarpone and housemade syrup – accompanied by a mimosa, of course.
2101 Cherokee St., St. Louis, 314.776.6599, themudhousestl.com
PARK AVENUE COFFEE
Park Avenue’s five locations from downtown to Cortex, Lafayette Square and the Hill are dependable stops for your caffeine fix or a bag of whole beans. Visit the Columbia Avenue location on the Hill for the scent of freshly roasted beans from the on-site roastery.
Multiple locations, parkavenuecoffee.com
KALDI’S COFFEE ROASTING CO.
With 10 locations in the St. Louis metro area, you’re never too far from a Kaldi’s. Each Kaldi’s has a distinct look and feel to fit the surrounding neighborhood, with frozen coffee drinks, smoothies, teas from Kaldi’s offshoot Firepot, and seasonal coffee specials complementing the traditional lineup of espresso drinks, all presented with an urbane style.
Multiple locations, kaldiscoffee.com
Exit 11 has expanded from its Franklin County origins to bring two of its drive-thru coffee cabins to the St. Louis area. Pull up to the window and take your pick of hot or iced espresso drinks, with a range of milks to suit your dietary needs. They’re strong on breakfast items, with ham, egg and cheese croissant sandwiches, chorizo-filled breakfast burritos and cinnamon rolls.
Multiple locations, exit11coffee.com
Bikes & coffee
CURSED BIKES AND COFFEE
Cozy up with a coffee and house-baked pastry and watch an old bike race on the flatscreen TV behind a former bar that now serves as a bike retail and service area; spare parts are charmingly stored behind the bar where liquor bottles presumably once sat.
7401 Pershing Ave., University City, 314.601.3136, cursedbikesandcoffee.com
BIKE STOP CAFE
Offering extensive coffee and food menus, beer, wine and shuttle service for the nearby 237-mile, bike-friendly Katy Trail, Bike Stop Cafe is a great place to fuel up ahead of or after a long ride. Don’t have a bike? No problem – they offer rentals, in addition to mechanic and retail services.
701 S. Riverside Drive, St. Charles, 636.724.9900, bikestopcafes.com
ROAD CREW COFFEE AND CYCLES
Coffee here is brewed with Blueprint beans; there’s also a regularly rotating guest roaster and pastries by Whisk. Sleek, minimalist design and lots of natural light make this a great spot to get some work done or just refuel after shopping the retail selection of bikes and cycling accessories.
3172 Morgan Ford Road, St. Louis, 314.282.0705, roadcrew.cc
Art & coffee
CATALYST COFFEE BAR
Catalyst, the cafe inside Art St. Louis’ downtown gallery space, serves up coffee made from Mississippi Mud beans, Big Heart Tea and pastries from Whisk. Seating areas in the back, designed as quiet zones, are a lovely place to work or just sit and contemplate the art on display; proceeds from the coffee bar help support the nonprofit’s mission.
1223 Pine St., St. Louis, 314.845.4542, Facebook: Catalyst Coffee Bar
BLUEPRINT COFFEE @ HIGH LOW
We love this Blueprint location, which is brightly lit and filled with all kinds of books which patrons are welcome to sit and read; the long, library-style tables contribute to the literary vibe. The kitchen here is used to bake all the goodies you’ll find at Blueprint cafes, like buttermilk biscuits, cookies and scones, so you know they’re extra fresh. The High Low Gallery, located just behind the cafe, is open during regular cafe hours.
3301 Washington Ave., St. Louis, 314.226.6808, kranzbergartsfoundation.org/high-low
Located inside art gallery The Luminary, Black Coffee offers a concise menu of quality coffee drinks made with beans sourced direct from a farm in Ghana’s Volta region as well as Black-owned coffee brands and roasters. Not in the mood for coffee? The black lemonade is a fun, gothic twist on the classic refreshing beverage.
2701 Cherokee St. (inside The Luminary), St. Louis, blackcoffee.works
Pets & coffee
ZOOMIES PET CAFE
Lots of coffee shops have dog-friendly patios, but at Zoomies your canine companion can chill with you inside as well – plus there’s a fenced-in area on the back patio for when the zoomies hit. In addition to sweet treats by Little Opa Bakery and traditional and seasonal espresso and coffee drinks, there are also more robust breakfast and lunch offerings like a black bean and sweet potato burrito and sandwiches made with Union Loafers sourdough bread – and of course pup cups just for Fido.
5838 Macklind Ave., St. Louis, 314.696.2003, zoomiespetcafe.com
MAUHAUS CAT CAFE AND LOUNGE
We love that Mauhaus is as committed to a quality coffee-and-snack situation as they are to care for their kitties, all of which are adoptable thanks to the cafe’s partner, Stray Haven Rescue. Gorgeously decorated cookies and other treats are baked in-house, their coffee is from local roaster La Cosecha, and the tea is from Traveling Tea. Reservations are recommended and come with a complimentary coffee or tea drink.
3101 Sutton Blvd., Maplewood, 314.384.2287, mauhauscafe.com
THE CHESHIRE GRIN CAT CAFE
When you walk into two-story cat cafe The Cheshire Grin, be sure to look up – you might see a couple of kitties chasing each other across the clear Plexiglas ceiling. The menu here is tight but tasty; coffee drinks are made using the Yawning Cat blend nearby roasters Coffeestamp created just for the cat cafe.
1926 Cherokee St., St. Louis, 314.300.8119, thecheshiregrincatcafe.com
The seriousness of Comet Coffee’s coffee program matches the expertise of their pastry program. Whether you want a cortado, a croissant, a quiche or just whole beans, they are thoughtful in every category of what they offer.
Living Room Coffee & Kitchen and Ivy Cafe offer a more robust menu of daytime offerings (and evenings too at Ivy Cafe). Ivy Cafe has their takes on overnight oats, French toast and pancakes, but their tartines take the cake: The Pershing with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, basil and a truffle glaze, or The York, with local oyster mushrooms, hummus, microgreens and goat cheese. They offer coffee drinks including a French press and flavored lattes like smoked salted honey or hibiscus rose. Try it with one of their tiny banana-walnut breads for the perfect pairing. At Living Room the Workday sandwich with soft boiled eggs, cheddar and bacon continues to be a reliable stand-by.
For those on the hunt for pastries venturing further into dessert land, La Patisserie Chouquette is known for intricately made pastries, cakes and other desserts, their coffee drinks also fall within the “sweets” category from the whipped Dalgona coffee served over ice and milk to the Chef’s Survival Coffee with Vietnamese coffee, boba, crushed Oreos and whipped cream. Here you will reach a level of decadence difficult to find elsewhere.
Also not to be missed are the treats at SweetArt and Pipers Tea and Coffee; both offer a range of desserts that accommodate vegan or gluten-free dietary restrictions and taste like desserts that you will want again and again. SweetArt’s Maine Event chocolate chip cookie, brownies and cupcakes are perennial favorites. At Pipers Tea and Coffee, pair house-roasted coffee with a selection from Sift’d’s lineup of gluten-free and vegan cookies. They have a variety of flavors from carrot cake to cookies and cream to funfetti – a fan favorite.
Comet Coffee, 5708 Oakland Ave., St. Louis, 314.932.7770, cometcoffeestl.com
Ivy Cafe, 14 N. Meramec Ave., Suite A, Clayton, 314.776.9377, ivytartines.com
La Patisserie Chouquette, 1626 Tower Grove Ave., St. Louis, 314.932.7935, simonefaure.com
Living Room Coffee & Kitchen, 2810 Sutton Blvd., Maplewood, 314.899.0173, livingroomstl.com
SweetArt, 2203 S. 39th St., St. Louis, 314.771.4278, sweetartstl.com
Pipers Tea and Coffee, 3701 S Kingshighway Blvd., St. Louis, 314.282.0060, cupofpipers.com
Third-wave coffee programs
When Sump Coffee opened in 2011, it was not easy to find a pour-over coffee or a cold brew in town. Owner Scott Carey sourced quality beans, roasted them with care and used precise technique to make outstanding coffee drinks. Like any great chef, Carey really cared about the quality of the ingredient and how to treat it.
While third-wave coffee programs used to be novel, it’s now common to see restaurants and coffee shops investing in their coffee programs and supporting local roasters, which means better cups for us all. St. Louis is lucky to have coffee shops and brands like Blueprint Coffee, Upshot Coffee, Coma Coffee Roasters and newcomer Quarrelsome Coffee in the Central West End that devote significant time to sourcing and roasting beans to make coffee that’s extra special.
Sump Coffee, 3700 S. Jefferson Ave., St. Louis, 917.412.5670, sumpcoffee.com
Blueprint Coffee, multiple locations, blueprintcoffee.com
Upshot Coffee, 5326 Hwy. N, Cottleville, 636.352.1139; 816 N. Kingshighway St., St. Charles, 636.209.4331, weareupshotcoffee.com
Coma Coffee Roasters, 1034 S. Brentwood Blvd., Richmond Heights, 314.250.1042, comacoffee.com
Quarrelsome Coffee, 33 N. Sarah St., St. Louis, 314.260.9008, quarrelsome.coffee
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