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Best Coffee Shops in Cape Town
We've discovered some of the best roasteries and cafés in the Mother City for that perfect cup of java
We've discovered some of the best roasteries and cafés in the Mother City for that perfect cup of java
Last Update: January 17, 2016
Lovers of the freshly ground brew are spoilt for choice in Cape Town. With nearly every Mother City corner being home to a cute or quirky coffee house it shouldn’t surprise you that we think of ourselves as connoisseurs. Begin your java-loving journey and take refuge from the cold and rainy season inside one of these comfortable cafés.
Folk Coffee Anthropology by Espresso Concepts
Opening its doors in January 2016, this Bree Street haunt offers caffeine lovers, food enthusiasts and everyone in between a unique coffee experience. With its stylish yet comfortable atmosphere, guests are immediately put at ease and are invited to sit back and relax with a great cuppa Joe in the book corner, on the couch or at a table by the eateries large windows. No matter whether it is for a quick cup on-the-run, a coffee date or even a couple of coffee cocktails before painting the town red – Folk Coffee Anthropology welcomes anyone and everyone and aims to make your cup of java just the way you like it. To accompany the coffee inspired beverages, the eatery too offers a small yet extensive food menu comprising various tapas and light meals. Crowd favourites includes the fish cakes served with coriander and a pinch of chili topped with salsa and guacamole and the hot and spicy chicken livers served with crispy ciabatta toast. What’s more, Folk Coffee Anthropology is also a retail store for Espresso Concepts and is the sole importer of the Spanish Iberital espresso machines as well as other domestic coffee goods and beans.
Opening Hours: Monday – Wednesday: 7am – 5:30pm | Thursday and Friday: 7am – 8pm | Saturday: 8am – 2pm | Sunday: Open for special events or occasions.
Shop 4 Touchstone House | 7 Bree Street | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 276 1795
Black Insomnia Coffee Company
Founded by businessman and coffee-holic, Sean Kristafor, Black Insomnia Coffee Company has officially been ranked ‘the strongest coffee in the world’ according to international caffeine reference website, the Caffeine Informer. Blended and roasted in Cape Town by Gerald Charles – the 6th best coffee roaster in the world – Black Insomnia is made from a unique blend of Ugandan, Guatemalan and Brazilian beans comprising notes of chocolate, caramel and hazelnut coupled with an unrivalled caffeine-kick. Striving to ‘reboot’ the Mother City’s coffee culture, Sean seeks to deliver something stronger and darker than anything ever done before in the coffee realm producing a delicious tasting cup of Joe that too comprises the highest caffeine level on the planet. Black Insomnia contains 57.7mg of caffeine per fluid ounce, which is just over 6% more caffeine than its closest US competitor’s product. Black Insomnia’s wide range of products can either be purchased online – and is available across the globe – as well as drank at a number of coffee outlets in Cape Town and surrounds.
Outlets: Shift Espresso Bar, Haas Coffee, Hard Pressed Café and Ginja Beanz. Follow Black Insomnia on social media to find out exactly which Mother City java hotspots stock ‘the world’s strongest coffee’.
blackinsomnia.coffee | +27 (0) 83 665 8616
Blokes Hair with Brew Coffee
Blokes Hair with Brew Coffee is the second men’s hair salon to be established in the area by Cape Town’s ‘Queen of Cuts,’ Brian Oosthuizen. There’s a slight difference in clientele in the new shop because of its location. In addition to a growing list of regulars, it is popular with tourists who happen to pass by. What’s more, the unpretentious look and relaxed salon-cum-coffee-shop layout, encourages walk-ins. Conversation flows easily between those enjoying their favourite cuppa at the bar or at one of the small tables, and whoever is undergoing the quiet snipping and combing. The music – mostly electro swing – adds to the mellow vibes and the delicious aroma of freshly brewed coffee is the proverbial cherry on the top.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 7:00am – 6pm.
57 Main Road | Green Point | Cape Town |www.blokeshair.com
The aroma of freshly ground coffee mingles enticingly with the scent of home-baked loaves as one enters through the grand, lion embossed doorway of the Bromwell Boutique Mall. Occupying the lower story, Bread Café greets guests with an air of relaxed local luxury and invites them to savour their coffee and conversation in a tranquil classic-contemporary setting. With a full patisserie of fresh and feathery cakes and pastries to choose from, patrons can pair their beverage with something truly decadent. For a cup of Joe on the go, the bakery and patisserie also offer a deli service. Coffees are expertly prepared by Bread’s whip smart and sharply dressed Service Ambassadors- part barista, part butler, they put the art in artisanal. Full-flavoured and crowned with rich velvety crema, this is java at its finest. At Bread Café, there’s no need for strife between tea and coffee devotees- in addition to excellent java, High Tea is on offer daily, with an extensive selection of fine teas.
Lower Level The Bromwell Boutique Mall, 250 Albert Road | Woodstock | Cape Town | +27 (0)214474730
Surrounded by galleries and art centres, this Loop street-based café invites coffee-lovers in for a satisfying cuppa served with a smile. Step into the Victorian-inspired building for a steaming flat white, delicious sandwiches, yummy pastries or vegetarian bites. By day the haunt is frequented by those who enjoy the 'coffee house office' and at night YoursTruly becomes a vibrant eatery and bar, with live DJ’s and musicians entertaining diners. What’s more, the hotspot offers a vegetarian menu, which is constantly updated and given a modern twist. Go on in and say hi!
Opening times: Monday – Wednesday: 06:00am – 12:00pm, Thursday – Saturday: 06:00am – 02:00am, Sunday: 06:00am – 06:00pm
63 Loop Street | City Central | Cape Town | +27 (0)81 521 3384
Situated in Gardens is vibrant and modern Deluxe CoffeeWorks offering “a lot of good music, interesting people and great coffee”. Promising to give you coffee the way you would like to receive it, the trendy coffee shop serves the finest Brazilian, Guatemalan and Ethiopian hand selected coffee blended and roasted in-house on a daily basis. Few things taste as good as a cuppa java made with warmth, undivided attention and plenty of passion. Pop in and find your favourite brew.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 07:00am – 17:00pm, Saturday – Sunday: 09:00am – 14:00pm
6 Roodehek street | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)72 569 9579
Sitting pretty on Cape Town’s famous Long Street, Rcaffé is the perfect spot for CBD early birds to get their much-needed morning cuppa. It’s also worth highlighting that Rcaffé opens its doors at 6:30am (one of the only places on Long Street to do so this early). But, back to the java: the eatery’s distinctive artisan mocha crema blend is made up of four different beans originating from Ethiopia, India, Costa Rica and Brazil. The medium-to-dark roast packs just the right amount of punch to give you a necessary boost to face the day. P.S: Rcaffé is also a popular breakfast spot, and serves it all day!
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 6:30am –5:00pm, Saturday (and most public holidays): 8:30am – 3:30pm
138 Long Street | City Bowl | +27(0) 21 424 1124
Truth Coffee Roasting
Named both The World’s Best and The World’s Coolest coffee shop is Truth Coffee Roasting located in the heart of our sublime city. The steampunk-inspired artisan coffee shop not only offers speciality coffees in the form of their Resurrection Blend Flat White (a must-try loved by all) Battle Brew and Potion Coffee (to name but a few options available), java lovers are also invited to take a tour of the roastery and enjoy a coffee tasting. Whether you want to see the one-of-a-kind coffee house for yourself, pop in for a coffee to-go or spend the entire day, we recommend a visit!
Opening times: Monday – Thursday: 07:00am – 18:00pm, Friday: 07:00am – 22:00pm, Saturday: 08:00am – 18:00pm, Sunday: 08:00am – 14:00pm
36 Buitenkant Street | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 2000440
Four and Twenty
Four and Twenty, is a European-inspired café and pantry tucked away in Wynberg’s quaint Chelsea Village. The adorable eatery dishes up only the freshest seasonal fare, filled with flavour. Pop into the café for coffees made with love and treat yourself to their homemade Vanilla Bean Scones or a tray of chewy chocolate cookies served with frothy vanilla milk. If it's a refreshing drink you're after, sip on their Raspberry and Thyme Cordial (raspberries infused with thyme served with sparkling water and ice) freshly prepared at the pantry. Yum!
Opening times: Tuesday – Saturday: 08:00am – 17:00pm, Sunday: 09:00am – 16:00pm
23 Wolfe Street | Chelsea Village | Wynberg | +27 (0)21 762 0975
Situated in Claremont Cavendish Square is the stylishly elegant Tribakery, home of the sublime Chocolate Cookie Latte. The chic café and eatery serves fantastic fare, decadent drinks and cakes fit for Marie Antoinette herself. Pay them a visit to sample their sublime freshly roasted brew or make the cafe your office for the day while the dedicated staff take care of you!
Opening times: Monday – Saturday: 08:00am – 21:00pm, Sunday: 09:00am – 18:00pm
Shop F56 | Cavendish Square | Claremont | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 671 6020
Stepping into O’ways Teacafe means stepping out of the fast paced world and stepping into tranquillity. The peaceful, warm and welcoming haunt offers cups of happiness and plates of love. This home-away-from-home café invites happy guests in to enjoy their superb Origin coffees, various teas and their popular hot chocolate whipped up with O’ways homemade chocolate sauce. The lovely chefs at O'Ways Teacafe caters for vegetarians and vegans and offers gluten and lactose-free meal options too. Visit them for their freshly baked bread and muffins or give their tea tasting and tea ceremony a go – you’re bound to leave with a smile.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 07:30am – 17:00pm, Saturday: 09:00am – 14:00pm
Shop 2 Heritage House | 20 Dreyer Street | Claremont |Cape Town | +27 (0)21 671 2850
Bread Milk and Honey
Spin Street’s Bread Milk and Honey dishes up freshly made great-tasting fare, delicious coffee, speciality teas and hearty baked goods. Pop in to the hotspot for their self-service breakfast buffet or sample some of their mouth-watering meals served at lunch. Afternoon buffet options include beef stroganoff, Tuscan chicken, sweet potato pie and chilli con carne. We guarantee that you’d want to stay for more than a cuppa.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 07:00am – 18:00pm
10 Spin Street | CBD | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 461 8425
The European-styled Claremont-based café and gallery invites coffee-lovers in for a perfectly brewed cup of java. Their menu boasts a wide selection of hot beverages to choose from while the freshly squeezed Nood Juices offer a cool alternative. Enjoy the art adorning Café Nood’s walls while you sip your steaming cuppa. The relaxed, quiet environment makes it the perfect spot to host a business meeting or spend the day working away.
Opening times: Monday – Thursday: 07:00am – 18:00pm, Friday: 07:00am – 17:30pm, Saturday: 08:00am – 13:00pmShop 3 Quadrant Square | Wilderness Road | Claremont |Cape Town | +27 (0)21 671 4475
With tried and tested confidence, we can honestly say that Bean There produces some of the best coffee in Cape Town. Aside from the fact that they source their beans ethically, Bean There also takes pride in travelling to farms and communities to hand select their single origin coffee beans. Not to mention, they also take care to roast their beans on site in small batches, one of the few coffee shops in South Africa to do so allowing for java addicts to get an exclusive optimal roast that is nothing short of excellence. In addition to their amazing cuppas, the extensive mix of African inspired trinkets and art creates the perfect environment for creatives to brainstorm, or for the regular Joe Soap to sit back and enjoy the hustle and bustle of Cape Town city outside.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7:30am – 4pm
58 Wale Street | Cape Town | +27 (0) 87 943 2228
mischu: The Coffee Showroom
Sitting pretty on Sea Point’s Regent Road, mischu is named after the owner himself, Mikhael Bou Rjeily (or Mischu as he is affectionately known by his friends and family). Separating itself from the pack, the coffee shop offers its customers high- quality espresso-based beverages at very reasonable prices. Not to mention, in 2012, mischu took home the Best Espresso and Best Cappuccino trophies at the Cape Town Barista Awards, as well as the title of Best Cappuccino in South Africa later that year. Boasting its own Coffee Academy that offers a number of java-related workshops and courses – mischu and its talented team have forged a reputation for being passionate about coffee. A trip to mischu is worthwhile (if you don’t live in the Sea Point area). If you do live in the region, then you would already know just how great this hotspot is.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7am – 6pm | Weekends and Public Holidays: 8am – 6pm
85A Regent Road | Sea Point | + 27 (0) 72 563 8090
This relatively new (it only opened its doors last year) and slightly alternative coffee shop does more then just create specialty coffees inspired by travels abroad. Described as the “sort of place that people can come to any time of day and do whatever they want in”, Shift Espresso invites its customers to be themselves and make whatever they want of the space provided. With their coffee being their standout feature, of course, the shop offers an array of unique and ‘against-the-grain’ specialties. Although the exact recipes are under lock and key, it has been revealed that indulgent ingredients such as condensed milk, Oreos and hazelnuts are used to create these unusually delicious concoctions. If this doesn’t excite you, perhaps the free Wi-fi, multiple laptop plug points and cell phone charging stations will tempt you to try out this electrifying coffee stop.
Opening times: Weekdays: 7am – 6pm | Saturday: 7am – 7pm | Sunday: 8am – 3pm
Cape Royal | 47 Main Road | Green Point | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 433 2450
‘Coffee and community’ are two things that Molten Coffee is very passionate about. But that isn’t just any coffee, or community-vibe. It is an excellent well-balanced cuppa of Deluxe Coffeeworks joe as well as a social and creative environment where anyone and everyone is welcome. Much like a neighbourhood, the coffee shop aims to create an atmosphere where people can come together and feel connected, create conversations between themselves and share in new and innovative ideas while enjoying a rich and flavoursome cup of coffee. Folks are able to enjoy their coffees with a selection of deli-type eats, as well as browse (and buy) the various crafted products displayed on the coffee shops walls and shelves.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7am – 5pm | Saturday: 7am – 3pm
45B Kloof Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 422 2885
Bootlegger Coffee Company
Importing coffee beans from exotic countries like Guatemala and Costa Rica, Bootlegger Coffee Company takes pride in serving its customers coffee made with only the best beans that they could possibly find. Freshly roasting their beans every day in a way that no other coffee shop does, Bootleggers gives its customers more than just a cuppa, they give them an experience. Customers are also able to enjoy their java delights with what is described as ‘honest food’ - food that is made with only fresh local produce. From fresh farm eggs benedict to rocket and free range burgers, Bootleggers has hand-picked only the best quality Cape Town produce giving their costumers glorious tasting food every time. Note: For all those early birds who are still half asleep, Bootlegger serves a ‘red-eye’ coffee everyday from 6:30am – 8:30am for only R14.
Opening times: Monday – Thursday: 6:30am – 10pm | Friday: 6:30am – 11pm | Saturday: 7:30am – 11pm | Sunday: 7:30am – 10pm
39-41 Regent Road| Sea Point | Cape Town | + 27 (0) 21 434 0060
Origin Coffee Roasting
Calling themselves “the artisan roasters of Africa” and taking pride in their hands-on mastery coffee crafting approach – Origin was here as an inner city first and is the godfather of all gourmet coffees in the Mother City. The venue has a wide range of beans available to their customers, both local and international, that they roast on site. It’s popular with the freelancing crowd as its cool interiors include both an upstairs and a downstairs area perfect for networking and socialising. If this isn’t enough, the coffee shop also attracts all tea lovers with their exotic options as the shop too has its own built-in teahouse replete with decorative orchids.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7am – 5pm | Weekends: 9am – 2pm
28 Hudson Street | De Waterkant | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 421 1000
Department of Coffee in Khayelitsha
Taking coffee to the people, the Department of Coffee (DOC) is the first artisan java stop to open its doors in the informal settlement of Khayelitsha. The shop is located right next to the bustling Khayelitsha train station and serves an array of espresso-based options from lattes, to macchiatos, chococinos and ‘freezeeccinos’ made from their own brand of Arabica-Italian coffee beans. This delightful quirky coffee shop, along with its trio of founders Wongama Baleni, Vusumzi Mamile and Vuyile Masku has become a major source of inspiration for the community and a definite ‘must-taste’ in terms of cuppa’s.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 6am – 6pm | Saturday: 7am – 3pm
VPUU Building | Corner of Ntlazane Road and Khwezi Crescent | ILitha Park | Khayelitsha | Cape Town | Wongama: +27 (0) 78 086 0093; Vusumzi: +27 (0) 73 300 9519; Vuyile: +27 (0) 78 316 2918
Tribe Coffee Roasting - The Foundry Café
The Foundry Café is situated in the heart of art in the Woodstock Foundry aims to give its customers an experience like no other. With exceptional cups of coffee designed to move java lovers, customers are encouraged to take a journey through the roastery, taking in the various countries that supply the coffee beans all in aim to find (and go home with) the perfect beanery coffee for them. Come on, don’t be afraid – join the Tribe.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7am – 4pm | Saturday: 9am – 1pm
The Foundry | 160 Albert Road | Woodstock | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 448 3362
Espresso Lab Microroasters
Dubbed as the coffee shop in Woodstock’s Old Biscuit Mill, Espresso Lab gives its customer’s new and exciting tastes and coffee roasting principles from across the globe. Using principles such as Nordic roasting which allows for a softer palate weight, and experimenting with methods that result in Americano’s served in glass cups – Espresso Lab will take you and your taste buds on one hell of a ride. With coffee growing areas spanning the globe, from Costa Rica to Ethiopia, they believe that no two palates are the same and thus aim to showcase ‘transparent, clean and complex’ coffees. As these java experts say: “The farmers do the hard work, and we’re their humble ambassadors”.
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 8am – 4pm | Saturday: 8am – 2:30am
373 – 375 Albert Road | Woodstock | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 447 0845
Situated in the city bowl, it is rare to not find this delectable bakery riddled with groups of Cape Town creatives huddled together over their first cup of coffee for the day. Visitors are also able to enjoy the delicious breads and pastries on offer. Best served warm out of the oven, these delectable treats disappear faster then you can say ciabatta. Note: Make sure you get there early to try their famous bacon croissant – nothing can compare to this mouth-watering bacon-y, buttery delicacy.
Opening times: Monday to Friday: 7am – 3:30pm | Saturday: 8am – 2pm
185 Bree Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 424 5644
Read about other top Cape Town roasteries in our amazing artisan coffee roasteries section of our website.
if this isn't enough to tantalize your tastebuds, check out our 10 Food Photos that Prove Cape Town is the Culinary Capital of South Africa! Also, add the Mother City's New Restuarants and Hot Spots to your bucket list!
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