The Twin Cities are no stranger to gourmet coffee, best known internationally as the home of famed coffee chains Caribou Coffee and Dunn Brothers Coffee, two of the United States' most prominent roasters. Beyond the big brands, the Minneapolis and St. Paul region's rich independent coffee scene mirrors its diverse brewing and culinary scene, offering a wide variety of established and up-and-coming micro-roasters for coffee lovers to choose from.
Staples like Dogwood Coffee Company brew their own coffees and specialty blends for other area cafes, while cafes like Anelace Coffee highlight regional and national favorites as part of multi-roaster programs. Many cafes partner with other ventures within the Twin Cities' cultural scene, from the combined storefront of Angry Catfish Bicycles and Cafe to the 24/7 internet radio of Five Watt Coffee's Radio Five Watt.
1. Dogwood Coffee Company
© Dogwood Coffee Company
Dogwood Coffee Company is one of Minneapolis' most acclaimed roasting companies, offering several locations throughout the Twin Cities area, including cafes in Northeast Minneapolis, East Lake, Uptown/Calhoun Square, and St. Paul. The roaster, which also maintains a roastery and several cafes across the border in Winnipeg, Manitoba, crafts a variety of made-to-order specialty beverages at all of its locations, ranging from single-origin espressos and pourovers to honey miel and maple lattes. Unique tea beverages craft from Spirit Teas are also served, including cascara teas and sparkling matchas. The cafe also partners with regional producers Rustica Bakery, Ames Honey, and Sweetland Orchard to serve up a variety of pastries and cafe delights.
4021 E Lake St, Minneapolis, MN 55406, Phone: 612-886-1585
2. Quixotic Coffee
© Quixotic Coffee
Quixotic Coffee is a European-style cafe in St. Paul's Highland Park neighborhood, owned and operated by Matt McGinn and Jake Nelson. The cafe is named after a John Cleveland quote about Don Quixote, which asserts that most modern stress is exacerbated by personal fear, an ode to the cafe's philosophy of helping diners slow down and relax with a cup of its velvety, satisfying coffee. Beans are provided by Bootstrap Coffee Roasters, fueling drinks such as the cafe's unique nitro cold brew lattes, infused with ingredients such as chocolate milk and housemade caramel syrup. Direct-from-farm Rishi Teas are also served, along with Treefort sodas, fresh-squeezed orange juice, and superfood smoothies. Diners can also pair beer and wine selections with cafe fare such as banana Nutella toasts, apple gouda paninis, or Thai-style chicken wraps.
769 Cleveland Ave S, Saint Paul, MN 55116, Phone: 651-699-5448
3. Five Watt Coffee
Five Watt Coffee offers three locations in Minneapolis' Kingfield and Northeast district and within the Keg and Case Market. The cafe, which was founded in 2014 by owners Caleb Garn and Lee Carter, serves up one-of-a-kind coffee and espresso-based beverages prepared with unusual ingredients such as cocktail bitters and chicory syrup, always remaining on the cutting edge of third-wave coffee innovation. Beer, wine, and low-alcohol-proof cocktails are also available at the cafe's Northeast location, which is located on East Hennepin in the city's Beltrami neighborhood. The cafe is also a hot spot for Twin Cities-area music aficionados, broadcasting its internet-based Radio Five Watt independent radio station out of its Northeast location 24 hours a day.
3745 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55409, Phone: 612-259-7519
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4. Angry Catfish Bicycles and Coffee
© Angry Catfish Bicycles and Coffee
Angry Catfish Bicycles and Coffee is a unique hybrid coffee shop and bicycle retailer, located in South Minneapolis' residential Standish Erickson neighborhood. The shop, which was founded by owner Joshua Klauck in 2010, uses beans from famed Chicago-based coffee chain Intelligentsia in all of its beverages, including decadent selections such as its popular smoked sea salt mocha. Bicycles from top brands are also sold at the store, including Northern Frameworks, Advocate Cycles, Early Rider, and Twin Six Standard. Cycling enthusiasts can also find apparel from brands such as 45NRTH and Podiumwear or snag gear from Garmin, Mad Alchemy, or Light and Motion.
4208 28th Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55406, Phone: 612-722-1538
5. Claddagh Coffee
© Claddagh Coffee
Claddagh Coffee is a cozy, low-key coffee shop offering two locations throughout the Minneapolis region, in the city's West 7th and Selby/Dale neighborhoods. The cafe, which is owned by Mary Hogan-Bard and named after the Irish heart and crown symbol which stands for love and loyalty, opened the doors to its first location in 2011 and expanded its franchise in 2015. Since then, it has been acclaimed as one of the Twin Cities' best coffee shops by major publications such as Minnesota Monthly, Verily Magazine, and the Saint Paul Pioneer Press. Traditional breves, cortados, and shot in the darks brewed with Dogwood Coffee beans pair with specialty lattes such as the espresso and Coca-Cola ice cream float Drop Kick Murphy and the cafe's namesake drink, which is infused with Irish cream and dark chocolate. Health-conscious food options include veggie paninis, red pepper hummus pitas, and spicy black bean burgers.
459 7th St W, Saint Paul, MN 55102, Phone: 651-600-3400
Groundswell is a quaint neighborhood cafe in St. Paul's Hamline Midway neighborhood, opened in 2009 by owner Seth McCoy. The cafe, which expanded to offer in-house bakery services in 2013, gained national acclaim two years later when its head baker Megan Greulich appeared as a contestant on Food Network's annual Christmas Cookie Challenge. Today, it serves up comforting coffee beverages such as honey miel lattes alongside a carefully-curated menu of regional craft beers, fine wines, and non-alcoholic tea and juice options. Creative breakfast fare ranges from pumpkin pie pancakes to Earl Grey-infused waffles, while lunch options include health-conscious plates such as tempeh reuben sandwiches and Korean-style plant-based bratwursts. The cafe is also a partner with local arts organization HWY North, hosting a variety of art-focused events throughout the year, including the Grounds and Sounds music festival.
1340 Thomas Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55104, Phone: 651-645-6466
7. Gray Fox Coffee and Wine
© Gray Fox Coffee and Wine
Gray Fox Coffee and Wine is the latest restaurant offering from Danielle and Chris Bjorling, the proprietors of Minneapolis' popular Copper Hen Cakery and Kitchen. The cafe, which is located within a beautiful atrium spot within the TCF Tower, serves up unique beverages such as its signature Millennial Pink Latte, which blends beetroot powder, strawberry, and oat milk with espresso and is served in a rose gold to-go cup. Excellent cafe fare is available to complement drinks, including cold sandwiches filled with ingredients such as turkey, brie, and hummus and a variety of clever panini selections. Meat and cheese boards are also available, along with smoothie bowls and the cafe's signature Fig and the Pig pizza. Beer, wine, and f'rose are available at the cafe's bar.
801 S Marquette Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55402, Phone: 612-886-3770
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