St. Paul has a lot of coffee shops with all kinds of coffee, from filtered, pour-over coffee to strong Turkish cups to smooth cappuccinos. But these shops also tend to be quirky neighborhood places with Wi-Fi, couches, great conversation, homemade baked goods, flavorful lunch goodies, art and peaceful spaces to get a little work done. The list keeps changing, but, for now, these are the best coffee shops in St. Paul.
Amore Coffee used to be on Grand Avenue, but recently moved to the other side of the river, and now it can be found on St. Paul's Westside. The homely and welcoming shop, where the theme is "all you need is love and a cup of coffee," is spacious and light, offering board games and books, old-school video games and local art. The coffee is some of the best in the city, and the food is great too, including organic, vegetarian and gluten-free options.
879 Smith Avenue W.
Dunn Bros Coffee may be a national chain, but it all started with one coffee shop on Grand Avenue. The original Dunn Bros has a great atmosphere, freshly roasted coffee and free live music several evenings a week.
1569 Grand Avenue
Nina's Coffee Cafe
In the first floor of a one-time Cathedral Hill hotel frequented by the F. Scott Fitzgerald family, Nina's serves great coffee in a gorgeous space with sofas, library chairs and exposed-brick walls. It's a quiet neighborhood coffee shop with Wi-Fi where patrons can get some work done. The tables outside are very pleasant on a summer's day.
Nina's Coffee Cafe
165 Western Avenue N
Not a coffee shop in the strictest sense, Shish is actually a Mediterranean restaurant named after the first word in "shish kebab." (In Turkish, "shish" means "skewer," which is how kebabs are cooked and presented.) Its Turkish coffee is phenomenal and one of the best caffeine highs in the Twin Cities. Shish also serves great cappuccinos, lattes, and other espresso-based coffee. Order a piece of deliciously nutty, syrup-soaked baklava with your coffee. If it's breakfast you're after, pair a big cappuccino with one of the place's huge, flavorful American-Mediterranean fusion breakfasts with perfectly cooked eggs.
1668 Grand Avenue
Black Dog Cafe is in a warehouse space in hoppin' Lowertown St. Paul across from the farmers' market. Grab a coffee before browsing the market, or enjoy your coffee inside and admire the work of local artists on the walls. The tasty food is a particularly good value during happy hour. Black Dog also serves draft beer and wine, making it one of the great places to go in the evening in downtown St. Paul to hear the area's veteran jazz musicians.
Black Dog Cafe
308 Prince Street
This little coffee shop has quirky decor, exposed-brick walls, tapestries and wall hangings. The coffee is smooth and delicious. The shop is open from early morning until late at night, and in the summer, patrons love to sit on the charming patio outside. The location, at the corner of Selby and Snelling, has several other interesting stores.
1562 Selby Avenue
Warm and friendly, with an upper and lower level so you can find a space to work or a table to chat and catch up with friends. There are many kinds of house-made baked goods, food, and terrific coffee. Occasional live music on Friday nights.
479 West Seventh Street
This is a large Wi-Fi coffeehouse near the University of Minnesota that's run by artists, with fantastic fair-trade, organic, pure filtered coffee and wonderful bulk teas. Enjoy a cup with seasonal homemade soups, sandwiches or tamales. There's a cozy, comfortable atmosphere, with the work of local artists on the walls. It's a great place to relax, have a meeting or do a little work.
2399 West University Avenue.