There are few things better than spending a chilly morning at a cozy coffee shop. And since fall is on it's way, our goal is to stay safe and snug inside. Of course, it’s easy to lose track of time admiring latte art or enjoying the company of those around you; or feel completely inspired by local artwork and calming tunes that fill many coffee shops. Here are a few of my favorite go-to spots:
Coffee Tree Roasters is a local family-owned shop with multiple locations throughout the city, including Squirrel Hill, Shadyside, Bakery Square, and more. My husband and I visited their location in Mt. Lebanon on Beverly Road and absolutely fell in love with the place. The cozy yet open space and friendly faces make this a welcoming spot to curl up with a good book or work.
It’s not always easy to find a comfortable coffee shop, that’s also fun and vibrant at the same time. De Fer Coffee and Tea in the Strip is one of those places. The space is filled with inspiring artwork and exposed brick that provides a warm and charming atmosphere. De Fer is a true gathering spot for the larger community playing host to local events like Latte Art contests, trivia nights, and more. And if you do find yourself spending time here into the evening hours, you’re in luck as they also serve up craft cocktails, beer, and wine.
One of the best spots in the Burgh for gourmet coffee and tea you’ll find in the Strip District, at Allegheny Coffee & Tea Exchange. If you’re looking to get lost in seemingly never-ending selections of coffee beans, this is your spot. This is one of my favorite places in the city, a love affair that started due to the cold brew growlers to-go that I love to swap out and try new flavors. Walking into this shop will make you realize why I’m not the only one who considers it to be such a special place and one that will keep you coming back time and time again. The variety of fresh beans is a treat to the senses and spurs endless possibility for you to make your own caffeine fixes at home, or try one made fresh on-site!
Like many of us coffee shop lovers out there, I’m a sucker for exposed brick, and bulletin walls that showcase local creativity. Commonplace prides itself as seeing coffee as a way to build community, and when you walk into one of their multiple locations throughout the city, you feel just that. Creative juices are flowing (literally and figuratively) as soon as you walk through the door. And if you find yourself snowed in or unable to make it to the coffee shop, you can sign up for a subscription service that sends well-sourced, carefully roasted directly to you.
Convive Coffee Roastery offers freshly roasted coffee from around the world, here in McCandless Crossing. It’s clean, modern, and warm decor feels like a giant hug as soon as you walk into the door. And if you’re looking for something else to put a smile on your face, check out their Pay it Forward board, where you’ll find inspiring gifts of those paying it forward with a cup of coffee, to all different kinds of people. The board is just one of the many elements that make Convive an inviting and favorited community space for locals and visitors alike.
Curbside Coffee was once described to me by a friend as “the happy coffee shop” and as soon as I stepped inside, I immediately saw why. With self-described ‘thoughtful and fun prepared foods and drinks’, you can feel the extra touch of love all through this place. Walk in on a weekend and you’ll be sure to find locals gathering for morning smoothies and coffee dates, and returning patrons who like me, cannot get enough of this little slice of happiness in Blawnox.
Few coffee shops have more a true neighborhood feel than that of Kaffeehaus in Deutschtown. It’s a small and cozy space, formerly a barber shop, with staff just as friendly as it’s setup. Locals are often recognized and make conversation with their baristas. They also serve some delicious sweet treats to try in addition to your caffeine fix. One of our favorite weekend activities is stopping at Kaffeehaus to grab a beverage to go for a stroll through the up and coming Deutschtown neighborhood.
I once heard La Prima Espresso described as “the most Italian cafe you can get in Pittsburgh” and after spending some time in Italy, I wanted to put it to the test. Let me tell you, they weren’t kidding. I would agree La Prima is about as authentic as it comes and just as delicious to boot. One of my favorite aspects of this place is the people watching – you’ll find people from all backgrounds and walks of life gather here and strike up conversation. It epitomizes everything we love about the sense of community in the Steel City, in a coffee shop.
If you’re looking for an extra level of coziness, like from a furry friend perhaps, make sure to check out the Black Cat Market in Lawrenceville. Black Cat Market is a beloved cat cafe, where you can get coffee, tea, baked goods, and check out adoptable furry friends all at the same time! As rescue animal lover, Black Cat Market is a favorite for a delicious cup of coffee, and to get a feline fix!
It sometimes feels like Lawrenceville now has more coffee shops than I can count, but Espresso a Mano always rises to the top as a tried and true fan-favorite for many years and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. Some of the most impressive latte art can be found here with their selection of fine espresso beverages and specialty coffee. One thing I will add is if you’re planning on camping up at a table for a period of time, make sure to arrive early to try to grab a seat! This is a popular place that sometimes fills up quickly, especially on the weekends.
Redhawk has grown a name for itself with college students from its Oakland location, and even earlier as a coffee-truck that served its beverages on the go. Patrons brag about it being home to the best mocha in the city, that’s sourced with locally made chocolate milk. Over the past few months, Redhawk has been picking up even more steam (pun intended 😉) with its inclusion in PG&H, a locally made home good shops on Smithfield Street. Is anything better than great coffee and shopping local goods at the same time? We can’t wait for hopefully more locations to pop up soon.