Looking for incredible coffee in Baltimore? We asked 9 of our favorite Charm City bloggers to spill the deets on the best cup of joe in the area. Continue reading for the 411 on what’s good, and remember to bookmark this post because you’re gonna want to visit each and every one of these coffee shops. So, without further ado, let’s kick things off with Charmington’s.
Adam Yosim: Charmington’s
I don’t ask a latte (pun intended) in a community coffee shop. Just some strong joe, a varied selection of sweets and savory treats, and a strong wifi signal to get some work done. Charmington’s – the co-op coffee shop and cafe across the street from the shuttered Parts and Labor – checks all those boxes and then some. You can even ask the baristas which seat President Obama sat in when he visited the Remington spot in 2015. Last time I was there, they were doing some fascinating things with coca cola, espresso and vanilla. If that doesn’t jolt you (another pun intended) to go check out Charmington’s, I don’t know what will.
Bmorefood: Cafe Latte’da
As much as I love my local favorite coffee shops, finding a hidden gem in #MyBmore is one of my favorite things to do. The search for the “Diamond in the Rough” has been my m.o. ever since I first saw Aladdin : ). Cafe Latte’da is just that! Found in the heart of the historic Fells Point on Aliceanna St., Cafe Latte’da is a quaint, unpretentious outpost for classic and unique espresso drinks, pastries & sandwiches, featuring local art. Their “Cheers” like welcome makes you feel like your entering someones kitchen for breakfast. With FREE WiFi and delicious smells, it’s charm really takes the cake in Bmore for me.
Pictured is their “Elvis Latte” topped with bacon and their Padtry-Black Bottom Muffin. You can enjoy them every day from 6am-2pm Monday-Wednesday, 6am-5pm Thursday-Sunday and at the Baltimore Farmers Market & Bazaar every Sunday from 7am-12pm.
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Full disclosure – We have a potentially debilitating addiction to caffeine. We have a Nespresso machine so we can quickly get our fix before work. We built a drip coffee stand and bought a coffee grinder so we can better enjoy our premium single origin bags of coffee. We also have a stash of Yerba Mate in case we need to switch up our routine. Like we said, potentially debilitating addiction to caffeine. The last frontier preventing this from turning into a full blown addiction was a neighborhood coffee shop in walking distance from out apartment.
Then OneDo opened in Canton.
It’s been hard to find a local place in the Baltimore area that really understands how to brew a good cup of coffee, and that’s where OneDo separates itself from the other shops in the area. We often find the final product to be either burnt or watered down. It’s one thing if you’re drinking instant coffee at work, but when you’re serving single origin beans from around the world, we are expecting a cup with flavor and body. No gimmicks, just good coffee. For us, this is why OneDo stands above the other coffee shops in Baltimore. They use quality beans and make damn good coffee.
There’s a saying in Spanish that loosely translates to, “Using cream and sugar with good coffee beans is an insult to the beans.” There’s a lot to love about OneDo, but we’ll leave it like this: We’ve never had to add sugar or creamer to their coffee. In our opinion, that’s the highest complement a coffee shop could receive.
Chyno, the Blue Bearded Foodie: Vent Coffee Roaster & Café Fili
There are three places where the mood and feel of comfort, peace, acceptance, and an overall sense of welcome should be ever present….a place of prayer….a bar….and a café. These places we hold sacred to share secrets, console loved ones, find peace, build the future or just an escape from the harsh realities of the world. As of late I’ve found solace at 2 amazing cafés: one in Mount Vernon and one beyond, both slightly off the beaten path, both gems really deserve your visit.
Vent Coffee Roaster – Best Café to plan your future|| Through the hills of the Woodberry / Hampden esque community you’ll find this beauty perfectly hidden in plain sight between Earth Treks and The Charmery right in the newly opened Union Collective. And don’t let the name fool you ( its way more then just a coffee roaster ) this place acts as the perfect getaway to grab a great mocha latte while talking about your plans of becoming a Food Network Sensation and if the conversation goes a little long you could always hop over to Union brewing and grab a pint of AM Gold Cream Ale brewed with Vents Coffee.
Café Fili — Best café to share secrets|| Its been a struggle to find places where the heart can shed a tear without the on slough of onlookers, either they are way to crowded or the seating arrangement just places everyone directly in each others line of sight. Café Fili, tucked away on the on the cross section of Read and cathedral streets, offers the perfect place for such a moment. Recently I’ve been visiting more frequently and its become a place where secrets can be shared, where diversity and inclusivity flourish and where if needed tears of joy or sadness can be set free.
Fleet Street Write Up: 3 Bean Coffee
When it comes to coffee shops, the four things I look for are:
a) How well lit the study/work area is.
b) Does the work/study area invoke creativity and productivity?
c) The quality and tastiness of their coffee and drinks.
d) Interactive and pleasant employees.
For me, 3 Bean Coffee fits all of the above nicely.
Their work/study area is so well lit from the huge window that overlooks the Inner Harbor. Gorgeous view I might add. The wooden floors, industrial lighting, and the wooden tables give off a warm, comfy, rustic vibe with a hint of urban. There is also music in the background, but it isn’t blasting. I usually just put my own headphones in anyways if I’m working on my laptop.
Regardless if I’m working at the coffee shop or grabbing some caffeine in a cup to go, 3 Bean always provides great quality coffee and seasonal drinks. Their drinks are always creative and they’re always tasty. This season, two of the drinks I tried out were their PFL (Perfect Fall Latte) and their Cardi B. The PFL consists of maple syrup (just a hint!) and all the spices that makes a pumpkin pie… it just doesn’t have pumpkin in it. I gotta say, I was pleasantly surprised by the PFL because it tasted like pumpkin pie straight up. According to one of the baristas, this PFL is an improved version of last year’s PSL they had, and 3 Bean’s response to the Pumpkin Spice Latte (btw, can you guess what their PSL–from last year–stands for? No. It’s not Pumpkin Spice Latte. It actually stands for Perfect Spice Latte lol).
Cool thing about the PFL too is that when it’s served to you, the barista grates cinnamon and nutmeg on top. Interesting enough, the PFL does not have any cinnamon in the actual drink.
The Cardi B consists of cardamom, white sugar, and honey. No spices are in the Cardi B drink itself, but it does have nutmeg and cinnamon grated on top. I asked one of the Baristas why they called the drink Cardi B. Apparently 3 Bean wanted to make a cardamom latte but wanted to add honey to it… and since honey is made by bees… *drum roll*… they named the drink Cardi B! *dun dun ta!*
Besides the drinks and the work ambiance, I really enjoy talking to the employees too. They are really versed in their coffee, and they’re always looking for ways to improve their coffee shop. For example, recently, 3 Bean switched their coffee program over to Gracefully Coffee Roasters. According to 3 Bean, Gracefully has been pumping out some really good coffee beans. I take their word for it.
Food Nomad: Dear Globe Coffee
Dear Globe Coffee is relatively new to the coffee scene in Baltimore and is somewhat off the beaten path. You can find it on a stretch of Howard Street dubbed Antique Row due to the many antique stores on the same block. I guess you can also say it’s on the Western fringe of Mount Vernon. Regardless, there aren’t many coffee shops to be found in the area.
Dear Globe’s owner, LieAnne Navarro, found the space when a friend of hers (who was also a baker) was moving out. She had been a barista since she was 16 and had more recently been focused on the technical side of roasting coffee. Opening Dear Globe was a natural evolution of her career. Her coffee offerings all focus on being organic, sustainable and supportive of the small farms and farmers who grow it. She’s also helping re-vitalize Baltimore by opening a business and building a community space in a part of the city that isn’t usually on a coffee lover’s radar.
The space is quaint, eclectic and reflects LieAnne’s other passion of being a visual artist. Whenever you go on, you’re bound to see locals just lounging, working on their laptops and all seem to be friends with LieAnne and all seem to have found a perfect meeting space for their neighborhood. Dear Globe has also strove to partner with various pastry and baked good vendors throughout the city so on any random visit, you can not only enjoy a great cup of coffee but may be able to get a bagel, muffin or piece of apple pie with it.
P and H Eats: Artifact Coffee
Tucked away in an old mill, Artifact Coffee is the perfect place to sit and relax with a latte, settle in for weekend brunch, or even grab something quickly for the road. It’s beautifully designed and curated – something like rustic farmhouse chic – with local goods and art, all under the warm, inviting glow of indoor cafe lights. Using Counter Culture beans as their base, all of the coffee and espresso drinks at this little third wave coffee shop are always on point.
Aside from great flavor, we’ve always been impressed at how their drinks are always served at the perfect strength and temperature. Even if you’re not a coffee drinker, they’ve got you covered with a solid collection of teas and refreshing homemade fruit sparklers. All of their food is made with locally sourced, seasonal meats and produce. And don’t leave without checking out their daily in-house baked goods, such as danishes, croissants, and vegan cookies – the perfect end to a meal or pairing with a cappuccino.
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Shae Li: John Brown Coffee
John Brown Coffee has the air of ‘hidden gem’ written all over it, which is exactly how I felt when I stumbled upon it one Autumn day. Located off of Falls Rd in Cockeysville, Md, tucked against the top corner of Oregon Ridge Park, this tiny but bright coffee shop is a favorite destination whenever I feel like ‘just taking a drive.’ The former gas station boasts a charming tiled counter space, with room for three bar stools and a small selection of coffee related goods and treats. The micro-shop makes a nod to Dale Cooper of Twin Peaks with to-go cups that sport a “Damn fine cup of coffee,’ stamped on the sleeve but provides a few covered picnic tables right outside for the more leisurely traveler.
Simple and non-fussy, John Brown Coffee wastes no space on overwhelming its guest with offerings, serving up an easy-to-navigate menu of Vigilante Coffee, tea, and other specialty beverages like LeMonade’s Golden Milk, seasonal spritzers and hot cocoa. The shop is adjacent to John Brown General and Butchery, equally worth a visit, and both sit across from a roadside stand – complete with produce, pumpkins and in the winter – evergreen trees. It is a bit out of the way for city-dwelling folk but collectively worth taking a trip to to grab a hot cuppa and fresh steak for dinner.
Stylishly Taylored: The Bun Shop
One of my favorite coffee shops is tucked away on a side street in Mount Vernon. The Bun Shop is a staple in the cultural community in Baltimore and frequented by students like myself! that are on the hunt for a cooperative and inclusive space with quality coffee and delicious (you guessed it) buns. With their wide selection of drinks – Thai iced coffee, London Fogs, and cheap drop coffee – and cozy, dimly lit ambiance, The Bun Shop is a must-hang when in Baltimore. The shop is even open late night for your caffeine cravings and/or studying needs. And definitely don’t skip out on trying a warm Roti Boy. Got buns, hun?
Alright Nomsters, that’s a wrap for today. We hope you enjoyed reading about the best coffee shops in Baltimore – definitely let us know which places you’ve been to and which you’re excited to try by leaving us a comment below! A huge, HUGE thanks to all of our blogger friends for taking part in this guide and sharing their amazing work. We’ve linked all of their blogs and social media platforms below their respective blurbs so make sure you follow each and every one of these superstars.
For more MD content, check out THIS tab here. Also, if you enjoyed reading this guide, you’ll probably enjoy Where to Get the Best Crab Cakes in Baltimore and The Best of Maryland: Top 10 Dishes of 2017. We post new content every Monday and Thursday so make sure to check back soon! Until next time, friends.