Coffee is one of the lifelines of New Yorkers. The town is serious enough about it that it might cause havoc if proper caffeination doesn’t take place before 11AM. However, sometimes there’s a need to venture out for something different than your typical cup of coffee. Big Apple isn’t as renowned as the coffee capital of Seattle.However, there are a handful of options for finding NYC latte art, unique coffee brews and exceptional espresso beverages. Here’s a list to get your hands on some of the best coffee NYC can offer.
Draw Me One of Your French Girls…or a Leaf Will Do
Latte Art is a teeny, tiny coffee shop tucked away in FiDi. It offers much more than just the namesake. Should you find yourself ordering the latte art, why not take the Starbucks experience to the next level? Instead of having your name written on the cup, have it poured into the foam. Many patrons look forward to enjoying their traditional Latin treats along with their brew, such as an alfajor, which is a crumbly butter cookie with dulce de leche filling, and homemade empanadas.
Photo Credit: Latte Art NYC
This cozy coffee shop is all about the espresso and offers a perfect place to enjoy a delicious latte, macchiato (a shot of espresso with a dollop of foam) or cortado (a half espresso and half steamed milk beverage). Should you find yourself by Washington Square Park with your puppy pal, you can walk right in and order your favorite caffeinated concoction. Their cappuccinos and lattes, while not available for artwork upon request, is served with a beautiful, perfect leaf poured onto the foam. Their coffee gives a wonderfully nutty flavor derived from using Counter Culture Coffee beans.
Photo Credit: @thirdrailcoffee
Unique Shops for the Coffee Bean Fiend
Coffee Project New York aims to bring you outside of the typical coffee run. Graduating past just latte art, the shop is well-known for its deconstructed latte, where avid coffee connoisseurs get to experience the essence of each part of the latte. Called Project #1, it offers the espresso first, then the foamy milk and then a latte. This isn’t for the rushing hustle and bustle types, but is meant for one to embrace the flavor profiles and texture of each part of a latte before enjoying the blend of both parts together. Another well-known item on their menu is the nitro coffee, where they invigorate cold-brewed coffee with nitrogen to produce a creamy smoothness in the texture (think of a nitrogen-infused Guinness at Swift Hibernian bar). There is also a Nitro Flight, if you want to experience different complexities of how the nitro brew can be enjoyed.
Photo Credit: @coffeeprojectny
The concept at Hi-Collar blends the East (Japan, specifically) and the West as a coffee shop and sake bar. Frequent visitors of Astor Place are familiar with such menu items. Examples of these fusion items are the Omurice, which is an omelette with a bit of pork and a sweet tomato sauce over rice. Or a simpler meal: a Katsu sandwich, where the breaded and fried pork is available and is both dainty and delicious. Enough about the food though, we’re really here for the coffee. The unique coffee menu item here is the iced siphon coffee. Siphoned coffee alone is an art that takes some patience to master, but at Hi-Collar, they have the set-up all ready for you. The science experiment will produce a very smooth and rich coffee that is delicious on its own, without the aide of sugar or milk. If you come after hours into the evening, the spot becomes a sake bar.
Photo Credit: @hi_collar
Roasted right in Red Hook, these beans are ready to brew and enjoy right in Manhattan. An added bonus to give even more reasons for customers to stay loyal is the option to add a delicious Doughnut Plant donut to your coffee. While the coffee is impressive all on its own, Joe Coffee is also about empowering you to become a more knowledgeable coffee drinker. They offer classes to learn cupping (or tasting and profiling your coffee brews), latte art and home brewing.
Photo Credit: Joe Coffee
For the Love of Variety
Grounded is all about eco-conscious grounds and just as eco-friendly coffee creations. Their baked goods are made with locally sourced ingredients. Even their rainforest alliance certified grounds are roasted in New Jersey. While the loose leaf tea menu is impressive, their coffee is not to be overlooked. Their specialty coffees can be had with such flavors as mint, hazelnut, chocolate or raw honey. The Honey Bee Latte will bring a smooth subtly sweet flavor to your coffee cup. The spot is truly a place to lounge, study or relax, with greenery and a floor-to-ceiling bookcase to set a calming ambiance as you sip.
Photo Credit: @groundednyc
If you’ve ever experienced a beerhouse that had numerous brews on tap, just imagine if they offered different coffee beans instead. We’re talking about beans on beans on beans from all around the world. These international beans are stored in their Javabot. It’s a technological creation of pneumatic tubes full of beans that roasts and brews you a fresh cup. Choose from about a dozen of their beans on the wall and request anything from drip-coffee to espresso-based drinks.
Photo Credit: @roastingplant
The Coffee from Down Under: Flat White Coffee
The spirit of the love for espresso in New Zealand comes to NYC in the form of Happy Bones. New Zealand happens to be one of the top ten cities known for their coffee (particularly their flat white). We say don’t judge the modern and minimalist white-washed brick setting of the coffee shop. With the use of Counter Culture coffee beans, their coffee packs a punchy personality. Strong without the bitterness, your flat whites and lattes come with a heart or a leaf made with love. If you are lucky, grab one of their three small tables to relax and enjoy your drink.
Photo Credit: Happy Bones
The Aussies are quite masterful when creating velvety microfoam, which is one of the key ingredients behind the perfect flat white. The reason why Aussies love this form of espresso beverage is because it’s smooth and creamy. Boundless Plains Espresso offers exactly this, a flat white that is not too bubbly and not too milky. They have a minimalist backdrop of white beehive tiles that perfectly match to their wonderful flat whites. They deliver their espresso drinks to you with a touch of latte art. Should you have the munchies, you can enjoy their healthy menu items like avocado toast or a green bowl.
Photo Credit: @boundlessplainsnyc