A Guide to Berkeley Coffee Shops
Just a seashell’s throw from the marina, along bustling Fourth Street, is Artis – a wonderful go-to for all those java purists out there. The three classmates who founded this immersive experience among Berkeley coffee shops start with sustainably and ethically sourced beans, then roast one pound at a time, so as to deliver the freshest coffee available anywhere, encourage guests to offer their thoughts, and maintain the ability to make delicious changes as soon as the next batch!
The space itself is reasonably sized and airy, featuring high exposed ceilings as well as ample seating, a pleasant modern ambiance, and the occasional local band playing soothing tunes.
Cafenated Coffee Company
A farm-to-cup coffee roasting company that sources green beans directly from well-established women’s coffee farm cooperatives in Central America, Cafenated ensures patrons an exceptional, hand-roasted cup of joe that goes towards a noble cause.
Furthermore, the expansive patio area could double as a nursery, it showcases verdure-wrapped walls, colorful potted plants and cute light fixtures hanging from above, plenty of seating arrangements, space heaters and a fire pit for chilly days. Rest assured, when the fog begins to break, this is one gorgeous outdoor setting to soak in some Vitamin-D packed sunshine.
Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters
Nestled in the storied North Shattuck neighborhood, Wrecking Ball delivers an aesthetically pleasing environment accentuated by comfy chairs, a funky tile-wrapped counter, bookshelves, and at center stage, a 14-foot tall graffiti art mural by Christian Chanyang Shim, aka Royyaldog.
The coffee is sustainably sourced and expertly roasted at the operations’ headquarters in San Francisco. The quality of this morning joe will not disappoint, one of the founders is a licensed Q-Grader and credentialed Q Trainer by the Coffee Quality Institute, while the other launched murky coffee back in 2002, which developed to be Washington DC’s premier coffee bar.
1951 Coffee Company
1951 Coffee Company, founded in 2015, is a non-profit specialty coffee organization that promotes the well-being of the refugee community in the United States by providing job training and employment to refugees, asylees, and special immigrant visa holders while educating the surrounding community about refugee life and issues.
The friendly staff, speedy WiFi, lengthy workbenches, positive change that comes with each tasty purchase, and its close proximity to UC Berkeley’s campus make this cafe a lovely stop for students and visitors alike.
Housed within adorable brick quarters on Martin Luther King Jr. Way is Raffe Caffe, where one may encounter California’s first unique award-winning “East meets West” (coffee & tea) menu. In other words, they prepare drinks by blending elegant organic spices of India and the Asian and African diaspora together with classic specialty coffee standards. Two exclusive recipes that have garnered critical acclaim here are the Rose Latte and Rasa Chai Blend.
Bear in mind, maybe plan to grab and enjoy elsewhere as only a few tables are available, due to the store’s petite size.
MY Coffee Roastery
Near and dear to the heart of downtown and reminiscent of your favorite fairytale village, MY’s enchanting cobblestone structure harbors on-site roasters dedicated to capturing the mellowness and richness of their diligently hand-sorted coffee beans. Insta-worthy photo-ops can sure be found, complemented by beautiful medieval-style decor that just comes together magically.
Souvenir’s minimalistic white walls are brought to life with teal accents, dark wooden floorboards, low-hanging trendy light fixtures, and ample cozy seating. Especially when combined with their artisan small-batch java, the delightful balance of opulence, charm, and utility make this gem among Berkeley coffee shops an easy go-to for daytime meetings with colleagues or coffee dates with friends.
Alchemy Collective Cafe and Roaster
What first took form as a pour-over coffee table at Phat Beets Farmers market, and then became a mobile cart, has since blossomed into a locally beloved java enclave that’s worker-owned. Alchemy Collective’s intimate interior features red patterned walls, gold accents, artworks, a bookshelf, several tabletops, and all the sights and sounds associated with a passionate crew deeply invested in the difference-making craft of meaningful coffee.
SodoI Coffee Tasting House
Delivering hope and inspiration while serving the finest java, SoDoI is a somewhat hidden coffee house down an alleyway just off Telegraph Avenue (near UC Berkeley’s campus). The room has a darkish yet inspiring industrial feel to it, complete with dim lighting, exposed ceilings, eclectic decor, a brick wall painted over by a moody mural, and an abundance of charging outlets and seating.
There’s something indescribably special about this haven for UC Berkeley students. Let’s begin with the bare essentials, Caffe Strada’s modest though well-maintained location just across the street from campus, late-night hours, dependable study space amenities, and energizing java are certainly primary drivers of its popularity. Grabbing a seat on the tree-shaded patio can’t help but have one feeling as though all is within reach if only for a few more productive hours on the laptop.
They also offer a fairly diverse assortment of beverages from teas to iced coolers and juices to blended gelidos. Oh, and pastries too!
If you enjoyed this guide to the best Berkeley coffee shops, be sure to check out our list of the Top 10 Coffee Shops in Oakland!