Third Rail Coffee

The 10 Best Coffee Shops in NYC

If you're going to meet someone for coffee you might as well do it somewhere that's amazing. Outstanding coffee with friendly and helpful baristas are just the prerequisites to get on this list. These cafes are all some of the best in the world and the next time someone asks where you want to meet for coffee choose one of these coffee shops. 

#10 Little Collins

Midtown East

Little Collins pays homage to the spirit of the bustling street in Melbourne, Australia, after which it is named.

Every aspect of the café has been designed with the customer experience in mind. From the chic, industrial interior to the delicious, no-nonsense menu to the music that fills the space, Little Collins hits all the senses and makes people feel transported and completely at home, all at once. This is a place where the barista knows your name and remembers your favorite sandwich. They are the first café in New York to unveil the ModBar.

#9 Beaner Bar


This place is a gem. There isn't a place with nicer people at the counter and better coffee. Hands down the best Coffee in Williamsburg. The interior is small but cozy and inviting. The owner Lori is usually there to have a conversation too. Worth the trip, especially if you are from out of town and want to get a real taste of Brooklyn.

#8 Third Rail Coffee

Greenwich Village

A great place that is pretty small but the coffee is fantastic. The baristas are always friendly and there are a lot of regulars that come here. This family-run, cash-only joint offers floor to ceiling window views, perhaps the best place to grab for people watching.

Banner photo courtesy @thirdrailcoffee 

#7 Abraco

East Village

Inspired by Spanish and Italian bars. from day one Abraco aimed to create a bright, lively environment that went beyond their small walls. They love food, they love coffee, they love music. Their coffee is roasted with enthusiasm and everyday their shop radiates the vibrancy of the music that inspired their name.

#6 Astoria Coffee


A comfortable space to hang out with neighbors over great coffee, tea, and food. Their goal from the beginning was to open a coffee shop, but the venture started as a whole bean delivery service inspired by their neighbors who were eager for a steady supply of great coffee in Astoria before they opened a brick and mortar shop. They're incredibly grateful for the early enthusiasm and they owe it all to the wonderful local community of residents and business owners. Visit their laid back coffee shop in Queens featuring roasters from all over the country.

#5 Happy Bones

Little Italy

New York City is about energy and creativity, and Happy Bones exists to inspire and energize New Yorkers. They start with the best coffee and the best baristas in the city, add amazing local art, and bring you the most interesting publications from the world over. They want to send you back out into the city brimming with new ideas and passion.

Their obsession with great coffee comes from growing up in New Zealand, which has had a thriving espresso culture for two decades. They opened our first store in Little Italy as homage to the legacy and traditions of the country that invented espresso. And they’re based in New York because it’s a city that rewards excellence, which is what they strive for in every coffee they serve.

#4 Bwe Kafe

Hoboken, NJ

Bwè kafe is committed to providing great coffee and a friendly environment to  Hoboken and the surrounding communities. As a social enterprise, a portion of the proceeds go to ensuring children and youth in Haiti have access to safe drinking water and quality education. Not your usual coffee shop, bwe kafe is a gathering space for people who see the value in coming together with neighbors in an open and welcoming setting while having their cup of coffee make a difference in the world.

#3 Modcup

Jersey City, NJ

The general public has been sold a lie about fresh coffee for 50 years now and  Modcup intends to pull up the smoke screen. The neon sign that reads “fresh coffee” is 99% of the time nonsense! Nothing fresh about it! The best it might be is freshly brewed, but more often than not, you’re lucky if it’s that.

Their mission for the best cup starts right from the source. They import green coffee beans from all 4 corners of the globe. Utilizing the finest coffee importers and establishing direct trading with high quality specialty coffee farmers. 

Modcup utilizes the very best brewing methods and chooses the individual brewing method to suit the coffee being brewed. Nothing is left to chance. At Modcup they want their customers who buy their fresh roasted bagged coffee for home brewing to have the opportunity to learn about and purchase brewing equipment that suits their daily needs so that they too can make the perfect cup at home. Their website not only allows their customers to place orders on a weekly basis for freshly roasted coffee but also purchase brewing equipment. They also offer free  brewing classes at their roasting facility.

After coffee is roasted at Modcup they want it in their customer’s cup as quickly as possible. Utilizing a mobile espresso cart and a Vintage 1969 Citroen H-Van they are all over Hoboken and Jersey City eulogizing the fresh coffee message. In fact the Citroen will have a small 2.5 lb vintage drum barrel roaster installed on-board. They are the world’s first mobile coffee roaster.

#2 Brooklyn Roasting Company


The Brooklyn Roasting Company is committed to offering the best quality, fair trade, organic and rainforest alliance certified coffees and espressos hand roasting them each day in New York City.

Brookly Roasting company buys superbly flavorful certified coffees because they think that’s the best way to ensure that farmers (not just the people who own farms) receive fair payment for the crops they grow and harvest. To guarantee truly exemplary cup quality, they rigorously taste all of their coffees before deciding whether or not to buy them, and again before they ship whenever possible.

 They’re certainly not the only coffee company offering delicious coffees, there are others. But they’re also pretty serious about “green thinking:” recycled materials and refurbished equipment use, clean-powered distribution, and old-fashioned friendliness. They’re not really coffee snobs, they’re just very dedicated coffee lovers that only settle for the best.

#1 Ninth Street Espresso


Ninth Street Espresso established the city’s first quality-driven, specialty coffee bar. The idea was to serve the highest quality coffee, plain and simple.

Since its inception, NSE has set the bar for quality, not only in NYC, but throughout the United States. Their focused approach and streamlined menu have become the standard for specialty coffee shops throughout the country.

At NSE, the commitment to quality and craftsmanship is reflected by its chosen brew methods. From batch brewing with American made urns to extracting perfectly balanced espresso, NSE has carved out its own path, striving always towards one thing: great coffee, brewed with care, for everyone.

Check out 20 Questions With Ken Nye, Founder of Ninth Street Espresso