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A white mug holds a latte drink with white, brown, and green colors.
One of Sawada’s lauded lattes
Sawada Coffee [Official Photo]

Chicago's 20 Essential Coffee Shops

For those who need a jolt in the Windy City

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One of Sawada’s lauded lattes
| Sawada Coffee [Official Photo]

Chicago features some serious coffee shops, with roasters setting up cafes to bring the city fresh cups of coffee that put cheap diner coffee to shame. But roasters aren’t the only ones having fun. Coffee pros are finding space to showcase their drink-making skills at these 20 essential shops.

For this fall 2019 update, Finom Coffee, Philz Coffee Hyde Park, Cafe Mustache, Colectivo Lincoln Park, and Metric Coffee Co. were added. This decision is an especially difficult one thanks to Chicago’s top-notch baristas and strong, complex brews, so some of the city’s most well-known coffee purveyors aren’t represented in this list.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Oromo Cafe

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4703 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60625
(773) 799-1931
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This is a veritable United Nations for coffee, as Oromo Cafe takes flavors from Africa, India and Turkey to offer some of Chicago's most-unique coffee drinks. Oromo also spikes its beverages with superfoods for added nutrients in the drinks.

A minimalistic coffee shop with painted tiles decorating the brew bar.
Inside Oromo Cafe
Ashok Selvam/Eater Chicago

2. FINOM Coffee

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4200 W Irving Park Rd
Chicago, IL 60641
(312) 620-5010
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This popular Hungarian cafe offers eye-catching specialty espresso drinks such as rosewater and cardamom-infused “Turkish delight,” and the “choco spice” with Ibarra chocolate and Hungarian paprika. Customers can also order off a hearty “writer’s menu” with ambitious plates including karfiol piritos (pickled cauliflower, white bean and cauliflower puree, microgreens, smoked tea and prune coulis, pickled mango, grape nuts, sourdough toast, Sel Gris).

3. Osmium Coffee Bar

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1117 W Belmont
Chicago, IL
(773) 360-7553
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Osmium Coffee Bar, another spot to find Dark Matter coffee, is quaint. It serves up all the classics of its older siblings, including the venerable Star Lounge Coffee Bar. The West Loop location, Meddle, is also a great place for an agave latte. Dark Matter’s latest venture is Chocolate City Coffee Palace and Bodega in West Town, opened last May.

A blue building with people sitting in the windows drinking coffee.
Osmium Coffee Bar’s exterior
Dark Matter Coffee [Official Photo]

4. Colectivo Coffee - Lincoln Park

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2530 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 687-8078
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Milwaukee import Colectivo opened its first Chicago location in Lincoln Park to much fanfare in April with a huge heated patio space and fire pit. The chain has since opened shops in Wicker Park, Andersonville, Logan Square, and suburban Evanston.

5. Gaslight Coffee Roasters

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2385 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

Hipsters and families find common grounds at Gaslight, and it can be quite a scene of folks sipping on espresso shots. But put away those biases, as staff treats customers without the pretension associated with a fedora and handlebar mustache.

Hi folks! We’ve decided that after almost 7 years, it’s time to finally introduce a “specialty drink” menu! Staying...

Posted by Gaslight Coffee Roasters on Thursday, August 8, 2019

6. Cafe Mustache

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2313 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 687-9063
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This quirky, cluttered Logan Square coffee shop exudes unpretentious charm and tends to accumulate a crowd of remote workers and freelancers during daytime hours. The staff’s vinyl record selections are particularly choice. After 6p.m., the space transforms into its after-hours identity, a lively bar and music venue.

The air is still crisp but the sun is out and it is warm!!! Come get your photosynthesis on

Posted by Cafe Mustache on Tuesday, March 12, 2019

7. Ipsento 606

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1813 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(872) 206-8697
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Ipsento 606, along Milwaukee Avenue, is always busy right near the 606. The enthusiastic energy helps complement the Nutella and Ipsento lattes (the latter made with coconut milk, honey and a sprinkle of cayenne).

This Saturday at 10 AM we will be launching our hibiscus berry donut! We make the berry Glaze in small batches and top...

Posted by Ipsento 606 on Tuesday, November 1, 2016

8. The Wormhole Coffee

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1462 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 661-2468
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Come for Marty McFly's Delorean, stay for the coffee in this cozy Wicker Park space. The Wormhole is a fan favorite, and owner Dan Weiss is planning a ‘90s-style sequel in Bucktown called Wormhole 2.

A grey-painted coffee shop from above filled with wooden tables, ‘80s memorabilia, and customers.
Inside Wormhole Coffee
Wormhole Coffee [Official Photo]

9. Caffé Umbria

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346 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60654
(312) 877-5166
Visit Website

Caffe Umbria, a Seattle import, is an escape from the usual River North shenanigans. Not only is the hot chocolate stellar, but that dazzling selection of coffee beverages has something for everyone. It has two locations.

A vase-shaped glass holds dark coffee with a layer of foam on top.
One of Caffe Umbria’s coffee drinks
Kevin Osterhout

10. Passion House Coffee Roasters

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2021 W Fulton St
Chicago, IL 60612
(847) 224-6993
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This well-thought-out coffee shop near the Logan Square monument serves some of the city’s best coffee. Passion House’s food is also tasty and goes beyond stale pastries. The company opened its third and most recent cafe in April on Goose Island.

11. Metric Coffee Co.

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2021 W Fulton St suite k-101b
Chicago, IL 60612
(312) 982-2196
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Metric Coffee opened its first cafe in 2016 in West Town at its roastery. It only houses a few seats inside, but during warmer months it also has sidewalk tables. The cafe gives baristas a chance to serve experimental drinks that other cafes don’t serve. 

12. Sawada Coffee

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112 N Green St
Chicago, IL 60607
(312) 754-0431
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Brendan Sodikoff is committed to coffee with CC Ferns, 3 Greens Market and Sawada, the tiny spot tucked inside Green Street Smoked Meats. Hogsalt has brought in famed latte artist Hiroshi Sawada, who runs a few coffee shops in Japan, and his unique military latte mashes green tea and vanilla syrup into a wonderful concoction that will leave patrons buzzed. Hogsalt also operates a coffee shop in Humboldt Park (CC Ferns).

A dark coffee shop with red and dark wood tones.
Inside Sawada Coffee
Galdones Photography

13. Cà Phê Dá

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1/2, 1800 S Carpenter St
Chicago, IL 60608
(773) 999-1800
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The cafe complementing HaiSous has an unfair advantage thanks to Thai Dang’s creative Vietnamese food with banh mi sandwiches and more. But the Pilsen cafe also uses coffee from Dang’s family in Vietnam producing some of the richest iced coffee in the city.

14. Cafe Jumping Bean

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1439 W 18th St
Chicago, IL 60608
(312) 455-0019
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A Pilsen standard for more than two decades, it's more ideal to hang out for Intelligentsia coffee in between meals, as the food's popularity can draw hungry crowds.

Coffee... nature’s anti-freeze

Posted by Cafe Jumping Bean on Friday, January 25, 2019

15. Bridgeport Coffee Company

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3101 S Morgan St
Chicago, IL 60608
(773) 247-9950
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This South Side coffee shop features a neighborhood feel yet grinds out some of the city's best coffee using beans procured across the world.

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#bridgeportcoffee #chicagocoffeeauthority

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16. Back Of The Yards Coffehouse & Roastery

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2059 W 47th St
Chicago, IL 60609

Back of the Yards Coffee is a community icon in a neighborhood that often only finds itself in the media spotlight for the wrong reasons. The owners pledged to make their coffeehouse and roastery a welcoming place. Their motto reflects their efforts: "resilient and robust."

A tall white coffee cup holds an espresso drink with heart-shaped latte art.
Freshly brewed in Back of the Yards
Back of the Yards Coffee [Official Photo]

17. Philz Coffee

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1425 E 53rd St
Chicago, IL 60615
(773) 891-4848
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Cult coffee company and San Francisco treat Philz Coffee took Chicago by storm over the past few months, opening locations in Hyde Park, Lincoln Park, Wicker Park, and suburban Evanston. The chain is famous for both its shop inside Facebook HQ and customizable coffee drinks with beans ground on the spot.

18. Plein Air Cafe & Eatery

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5751 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637
(773) 966-7531
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This Euro-inspired cafe features a full assortment of coffee drinks. It's a collaboration between Kevin Heisner (Heisler Hospitality) and former Little Branch partner Soo Choi. There's also a great outdoor space next to the Robie House.

Everyday is #nationalcoffeeday .. ❣️

Posted by Plein Air Cafe on Sunday, September 29, 2019

19. Build Coffee

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2912, 6100 S Blackstone Ave
Chicago, IL 60637
(773) 627-5058
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Inside the Experimental Station, Build Coffee is popular with several South Side journalists who work nearby. It serves java from HalfWit and has a pulse of the community as a performing space and pies from Justice of the Pies.

A cozy coffee shop interior with wooden tables and colorful art on the walls.
Inside Build Coffee
Build Coffee [Official Photo]

20. Kusanya Cafe

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825 W 69th St
Chicago, IL 60621
(773) 675-4758
Visit Website

One of the most unique coffeeshops in Chicago, owner Phil Sipka came over from Robust Coffee Lounge to give Englewood a coffeeshop and alternative to fast food. He uses beans from Bridgeport Coffee.

There's a small but dedicated group of people who show up for these early Saturday morning hours for some tranquility...

Posted by Kusanya Cafe on Saturday, August 18, 2018

1. Oromo Cafe

4703 N Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60625
A minimalistic coffee shop with painted tiles decorating the brew bar.
Inside Oromo Cafe
Ashok Selvam/Eater Chicago

This is a veritable United Nations for coffee, as Oromo Cafe takes flavors from Africa, India and Turkey to offer some of Chicago's most-unique coffee drinks. Oromo also spikes its beverages with superfoods for added nutrients in the drinks.

4703 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60625

2. FINOM Coffee

4200 W Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60641

This popular Hungarian cafe offers eye-catching specialty espresso drinks such as rosewater and cardamom-infused “Turkish delight,” and the “choco spice” with Ibarra chocolate and Hungarian paprika. Customers can also order off a hearty “writer’s menu” with ambitious plates including karfiol piritos (pickled cauliflower, white bean and cauliflower puree, microgreens, smoked tea and prune coulis, pickled mango, grape nuts, sourdough toast, Sel Gris).

4200 W Irving Park Rd
Chicago, IL 60641

3. Osmium Coffee Bar

1117 W Belmont, Chicago, IL
A blue building with people sitting in the windows drinking coffee.
Osmium Coffee Bar’s exterior
Dark Matter Coffee [Official Photo]

Osmium Coffee Bar, another spot to find Dark Matter coffee, is quaint. It serves up all the classics of its older siblings, including the venerable Star Lounge Coffee Bar. The West Loop location, Meddle, is also a great place for an agave latte. Dark Matter’s latest venture is Chocolate City Coffee Palace and Bodega in West Town, opened last May.

1117 W Belmont
Chicago, IL

4. Colectivo Coffee - Lincoln Park

2530 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60614

Milwaukee import Colectivo opened its first Chicago location in Lincoln Park to much fanfare in April with a huge heated patio space and fire pit. The chain has since opened shops in Wicker Park, Andersonville, Logan Square, and suburban Evanston.

2530 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60614

5. Gaslight Coffee Roasters

2385 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Hipsters and families find common grounds at Gaslight, and it can be quite a scene of folks sipping on espresso shots. But put away those biases, as staff treats customers without the pretension associated with a fedora and handlebar mustache.

2385 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

6. Cafe Mustache

2313 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

This quirky, cluttered Logan Square coffee shop exudes unpretentious charm and tends to accumulate a crowd of remote workers and freelancers during daytime hours. The staff’s vinyl record selections are particularly choice. After 6p.m., the space transforms into its after-hours identity, a lively bar and music venue.

2313 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

7. Ipsento 606

1813 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Ipsento 606, along Milwaukee Avenue, is always busy right near the 606. The enthusiastic energy helps complement the Nutella and Ipsento lattes (the latter made with coconut milk, honey and a sprinkle of cayenne).

1813 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

8. The Wormhole Coffee

1462 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60622
A grey-painted coffee shop from above filled with wooden tables, ‘80s memorabilia, and customers.
Inside Wormhole Coffee
Wormhole Coffee [Official Photo]

Come for Marty McFly's Delorean, stay for the coffee in this cozy Wicker Park space. The Wormhole is a fan favorite, and owner Dan Weiss is planning a ‘90s-style sequel in Bucktown called Wormhole 2.

1462 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

9. Caffé Umbria

346 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60654
A vase-shaped glass holds dark coffee with a layer of foam on top.
One of Caffe Umbria’s coffee drinks
Kevin Osterhout

Caffe Umbria, a Seattle import, is an escape from the usual River North shenanigans. Not only is the hot chocolate stellar, but that dazzling selection of coffee beverages has something for everyone. It has two locations.

346 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60654

10. Passion House Coffee Roasters

2021 W Fulton St, Chicago, IL 60612

This well-thought-out coffee shop near the Logan Square monument serves some of the city’s best coffee. Passion House’s food is also tasty and goes beyond stale pastries. The company opened its third and most recent cafe in April on Goose Island.

2021 W Fulton St
Chicago, IL 60612

11. Metric Coffee Co.

2021 W Fulton St suite k-101b, Chicago, IL 60612

Metric Coffee opened its first cafe in 2016 in West Town at its roastery. It only houses a few seats inside, but during warmer months it also has sidewalk tables. The cafe gives baristas a chance to serve experimental drinks that other cafes don’t serve. 

2021 W Fulton St suite k-101b
Chicago, IL 60612

12. Sawada Coffee

112 N Green St, Chicago, IL 60607
A dark coffee shop with red and dark wood tones.
Inside Sawada Coffee
Galdones Photography

Brendan Sodikoff is committed to coffee with CC Ferns, 3 Greens Market and Sawada, the tiny spot tucked inside Green Street Smoked Meats. Hogsalt has brought in famed latte artist Hiroshi Sawada, who runs a few coffee shops in Japan, and his unique military latte mashes green tea and vanilla syrup into a wonderful concoction that will leave patrons buzzed. Hogsalt also operates a coffee shop in Humboldt Park (CC Ferns).

112 N Green St
Chicago, IL 60607

13. Cà Phê Dá

1/2, 1800 S Carpenter St, Chicago, IL 60608

The cafe complementing HaiSous has an unfair advantage thanks to Thai Dang’s creative Vietnamese food with banh mi sandwiches and more. But the Pilsen cafe also uses coffee from Dang’s family in Vietnam producing some of the richest iced coffee in the city.

1/2, 1800 S Carpenter St
Chicago, IL 60608

14. Cafe Jumping Bean

1439 W 18th St, Chicago, IL 60608

A Pilsen standard for more than two decades, it's more ideal to hang out for Intelligentsia coffee in between meals, as the food's popularity can draw hungry crowds.

1439 W 18th St
Chicago, IL 60608

15. Bridgeport Coffee Company

3101 S Morgan St, Chicago, IL 60608

This South Side coffee shop features a neighborhood feel yet grinds out some of the city's best coffee using beans procured across the world.

3101 S Morgan St
Chicago, IL 60608

Related Maps

16. Back Of The Yards Coffehouse & Roastery

2059 W 47th St, Chicago, IL 60609
A tall white coffee cup holds an espresso drink with heart-shaped latte art.
Freshly brewed in Back of the Yards
Back of the Yards Coffee [Official Photo]

Back of the Yards Coffee is a community icon in a neighborhood that often only finds itself in the media spotlight for the wrong reasons. The owners pledged to make their coffeehouse and roastery a welcoming place. Their motto reflects their efforts: "resilient and robust."

2059 W 47th St
Chicago, IL 60609

17. Philz Coffee

1425 E 53rd St, Chicago, IL 60615

Cult coffee company and San Francisco treat Philz Coffee took Chicago by storm over the past few months, opening locations in Hyde Park, Lincoln Park, Wicker Park, and suburban Evanston. The chain is famous for both its shop inside Facebook HQ and customizable coffee drinks with beans ground on the spot.

1425 E 53rd St
Chicago, IL 60615

18. Plein Air Cafe & Eatery

5751 S Woodlawn Ave, Chicago, IL 60637

This Euro-inspired cafe features a full assortment of coffee drinks. It's a collaboration between Kevin Heisner (Heisler Hospitality) and former Little Branch partner Soo Choi. There's also a great outdoor space next to the Robie House.

5751 S Woodlawn Ave
Chicago, IL 60637

19. Build Coffee

2912, 6100 S Blackstone Ave, Chicago, IL 60637
A cozy coffee shop interior with wooden tables and colorful art on the walls.
Inside Build Coffee
Build Coffee [Official Photo]

Inside the Experimental Station, Build Coffee is popular with several South Side journalists who work nearby. It serves java from HalfWit and has a pulse of the community as a performing space and pies from Justice of the Pies.

2912, 6100 S Blackstone Ave
Chicago, IL 60637

20. Kusanya Cafe

825 W 69th St, Chicago, IL 60621

One of the most unique coffeeshops in Chicago, owner Phil Sipka came over from Robust Coffee Lounge to give Englewood a coffeeshop and alternative to fast food. He uses beans from Bridgeport Coffee.

825 W 69th St
Chicago, IL 60621

Related Maps