Coffee is an incredible thing, and yet we can go for extended periods of time without truly appreciating what makes it so good. Yes, it provides a caffeine buzz that helps get the day started (or keeps it going), but that is only a portion of the story. Beans are grown in a few select locations around the world and then transported internationally to be processed by someone else, who then serves them to coffee drinkers in brewed form. Farmers, roasters, baristas, and finally, the java-obsessed masses all contribute to the enchantment. The best coffee shops are those where all of this comes together over a hot (or cold) cup of coffee and some friendly conversation.
What makes one coffee shop superior to another?
There are a variety of reasons why one cafe stands out among the rest, from superior knowledge of bean grading to cultivating an ultra-unique environment and menu to creating social impact. Finally, the best coffee house is one that you frequent and where the baristas are familiar with your name, order, and whether or not you wish to enter anonymously today.
Nonetheless, even among those local haunts, there are a few that are particularly lively. The coffee houses on this non-exhaustive list are redefining how you sip your daily cup. There will always be new cafes on the scene, but for now, these are the ones that are making a splash.