There’s a lot going on in San Francisco. From sightseeing to spending the day exploring the area’s local boutiques, staying caffeinated is a must! And whether you’re visiting the city for a day or you’ve lived here for years and have your designated favorites, there are always new cafés popping up across San Francisco that are worth your attention.
We’ve organized a list of the best coffee shops + roasters in the city to caffeinate and experience new flavors, and each one is a destination in itself. So plan some time in the coming weeks to sit down, catch up and relax in these funky, modern and quaint cafés.
Photo courtesy of Andytown Coffee Roasters
Michael McCrory and Lauren Crabbe spent over a year designing and building Andytown to create a functional, intentional space that would make customers feel right at home. In the 600 square foot space, Andytown roasts their own coffee, makes their own baked goods and provides a warm, welcoming space for you to work, meet and relax.
Inspired by European cafés, Biscoff is the only North American coffee shop that serves a Biscoff cookie with every cup of coffee. Known as Speculoos across the Atlantic, Biscoffs are famous in Europe as the best complement to any coffee beverage. The caramel flavor, crisp texture and delicious coffee will make you want to return to the Pier 39 café every day.
The history of Blue Bottle Coffee dates all the way back to the 1600s. In short, Franz George Kolschitzky opened Central Europe’s first ever coffee house in Vienna with beans bought after a siege of the city. He named it The Blue Bottle. 319 years later, the founder of Blue Bottle Coffee in Oakland made a vow to sell only coffee less than 48 hours out of the roaster and use only the finest, most delicious, and responsibly sourced beans.
Today, 15 years and nearly 30 cafés later, Blue Bottle is still doing just that! There are 11 shops in the Bay Area. Each and every one has a distinct character but every shop has the same great coffee!
You can find Contraband Coffee in various San Francisco cafés and restaurants, but to get the full experience, stop by their brand new SoMa coffee shop or the Nob Hill location where they do all their roasting. Contraband roasts are often at the midpoint between light and dark because they roast not for color, but for taste. The roasters want to ensure the best flavors of each origin are present without the tastes from carbon or smoke. In short, you’re guaranteed a carefully crafted cup of coffee every time!
Photo courtesy of Farley’s Coffee and Tea
Farley’s serves coffees roasted in-house and teas from SF locals, Five Mountains Tea. They didn’t always roast their own beans, though. Thanks to the passions of long-time employee Daniel, they served their first batch — of Guatemalan origin — in December and will continue to develop a unique style and experience through the coming batches.
All this, alongside their very own Parklet. The SF and Oakland Farley’s locations have small park areas as part of the Pavement to Parks program in an effort to establish a comfortable, urban environment to relax and enjoy your community!
Flywheel founder, Aquiles Guerrero, began his coffee education in the rural mountains of Nicaragua where he was born. It was there that his passion began and he learned the earliest stages and techniques of coffee production. When he moved to San Francisco, he worked in his family’s coffee shop — a local favorite — Martha & Bros. Coffee Co. After many more years and close experiences with the craft, Aquiles opened Flywheel Coffee Roasters in 2012.
Get a taste of these expertly made beverages inside the handcrafted space of Flywheel. Almost the entire shop is hand-built out of sustainable and reclaimed materials, providing a unique, out of the mold, look and feel.
Photo courtesy of Four Barrel Coffee and Derek Davis
Roasters at Four Barrel spend months on the road forging relationships with their coffee growers, farmers and producers. Then, instead of using computers, they use a huge vintage German roaster that allows the humans behind the coffee control airflow and maintain consistent heat. Stop by to meet the roasters and hang out in one of three San Francisco coffee shops.
Graffeo was founded in North Beach in 1935. One of North America’s oldest artisan coffee roasters, they remain family owned to this day with the same recipe and process that has been tried and tested over the years. With just two roasts, one bean blend and one decaf option, they’ve been able to perfect the roast, the flavor and the entire process to create one of the city’s finest cups of coffee.
Martha & Bros. got its start in Noe Valley in 1987 and has been perfecting the roasting and brewing process ever since. At all four San Francisco café locations, you’ll find free WiFi, friendly service and coffee experts ready to answer all your questions and ensure you take home the best flavor for your palate.
Photo courtesy of Mazarine Coffee / Nicholas V. Ruiz Photography | Boor Bridges Architecture
Inspired by the Bibliothèque Mazarine, a public library in Paris, the owners at Mazarine want their shop to be a place where you can appreciate the best coffees collected from all over the world, where you can have engaging conversations with friends and colleagues and where you can accomplish your own great works.
In December, Mazarine Coffee turned two years old and over the last two years, we think they’ve accomplished just that. They’ve been collecting the best coffees from all over the world and brewing them to perfection in their quaint, SF café and we can’t wait to see what they do next.
Réveille is more than a place to get great coffee; it’s a complete and fun café experience. And, in addition to four San Francisco shops, they still operate the original Réveille Coffee Co. truck — most often on Pacific Street between Sansome and Battery. There, you can get all of the artful espresso drinks SF has come to love and you can get a mini café experience with outdoor seating and fresh pastries.
Photos courtesy of Ritual Coffee Roasters and Bishnu Pokhrel
At Ritual, everyone embraces the craft coffee movement — from the farmers to the roasters to the baristas to the customers. Since 2005, they’ve been carefully following and controlling the whole process and brewing your cup however you like it, whether that’s French Press or Hario V60 pour over. Visit one of four coffee shops or their location in Napa!
Like San Francisco, Saint Frank is named after Saint Francis. They take inspiration from his belief that the ordinary and mundane are beautiful and seek to show that an everyday cup of coffee is much more than just that.
Owner Kevin Bohlin’s passion for coffee started when he was working at Ritual Roasters and blossomed on his first origin trip in Honduras. Since 2013, he and Saint Frank Coffee have been making similar trips to farmers and producers all over the world to ensure quality and build relationships.
Photo courtesy of Sightglass Coffee / Michael O’Neal
Sightglass has a café in SoMa, the Mission District and one coming soon in Divisadero. You can also get a cup at the SF Farmer’s Market on Tuesdays and Saturdays and inside SFMOMA while you’re perusing modern art. Each location offers Sightglass’ top quality blends brewed any way you want — from Chemex to the Hario V60 Dripper.
At Snowbird, coffee is inspired by the friends, family and neighbors that make it happen. In their cozy shop, you’ll find small batch roasts of their own as well as distinct blends they’ve chosen from around the world. Stop in to say hello and become a part of the family.
Spike’s takes pride in being, what they call, a fiercely independent coffee shop. You won’t find TVs or WiFi because Spike’s is a place for community and conversation. Bring your friends and family and spend some time catching up, without distractions and share a cup of SF’s best. Come back each month to see the new art show on display!
Trouble Coffee Co is one of the funkiest spots in SF — and that’s saying something. You’ll find in-house roasted coffees, coconut confections and delicious cinnamon toast. We suggest ordering a “Build Your Own Damn House,” which is a combination of French roast coffee, a young coconut, and a thick slice of cinnamon toast.
Where do you stay caffeinated in San Francisco?
If we missed your favorite coffee shop or local roaster, let us know!