Special Report

The Best Independent Coffee Shops in America

Snowy Owl Coffee Roasters
> City and state: Brewster, Massachusetts

Snowy Owl has become an irreplaceable central gathering space for the Lower Cape community. This rustic, low-slung small-town café and roastery has a warm, inviting glow and truly spectacular coffee, and shares a space with a beloved herb shop. The coffees they’re roasting are smooth and expertly brewed using several methods including Aeropress, Chemex, pour-over, traditional brew, and cold-brew. They’re also selling pastries, salads, and light snacks along with local art and gifts. 

Source: Courtesy of Darin W. via Yelp

Spitfire Coffee
> City and state: New Orleans, Louisiana

When tiny Spitfire Coffee opened in 2013, it was one of the first specialty coffee shops in New Orleans, and it remains the best. They’re sourcing a constantly rotating selection of the best-quality single-origin beans they can find, and four to five of them at a time are brewed via pour-over. The beans are also turned into classic espresso-based drinks as well as specialty offerings including a Brown Butter Mocha and Las Tres Flores with lavender milk, orange blossom syrup, and rose petals.

Source: Courtesy of Story Coffee via Facebook

Story Coffee
> City and state: Colorado Springs, Colorado

Story Coffee Co. is located inside a ridiculously charming “tiny house,” and unlike most coffee shops, offers no wifi or places to plug in – so customers are encouraged to engage in conversation instead of burying their faces in a screen. Founded by Don and Carissa Niemyer in 2015 after they visited more than 200 coffee shops in 45 states, Story Coffee roasts all its own coffee and turns them into delicious blends that the locals can’t get enough of. Even better, 5% of all revenues go toward feeding the local homeless population.

Source: Courtesy of Christopher G. via Yelp

Vesta Coffee Roasters
> City and state: Las Vegas and Summerlin/Lakes, Nevada

Vesta Coffee Roasters has a location in Las Vegas’ up-and-coming Downtown Arts District as well as one in Summerlin/Lakes, and both are vibrant and inviting. They source specialty coffees from around the world, working with trusted exporters, importers, and sometimes the farmers directly, and roast them fresh three times per week. All the classic coffee and espresso drinks are well-made, and specialty drinks include hazelnut-maple lattes, golden milk, and seasonal creations like the Aztec mocha with Dutch cacao, cinnamon, and guajillo chiles. There’s also a pleasing menu of pastries, tartines, and lunch fare.

Source: Courtesy of Youngblood Coffee Roasters via Facebook

Youngblood Coffee Roasters
> City and state: Fargo, North Dakota

Youngblood was founded as a grassroots operation in 2016, serving house-roasted coffee in a cool, modern, white-walled space. They offer ethically-sourced, fully-washed Arabica beans, which are roasted in a top-of-the-line Probat roaster to accentuate each coffee’s unique character and flavor. Coffees on offer include Cajamarca from Peru, Yirgacheffe Adado from Ethiopia, and San Agustín from Colombia. 

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