In honor of the snug feeling that comes with falling leaves, tender snows, and dreary spring and summer days, and in honor of the desire you may have to be cool and mysterious and bookish in a totally nonchalant, coffee shop-regular kind of way, we present to you: All the great places to find coffee (and tea) in downtown Akron. As a bonus, many of them are official stops on the Drip Drive, a coffee passport program in Summit County that you’ll definitely want to get in on.
1. Akron Coffee Roasters
Akron Coffee Roasters roasts specialty coffee right here in Akron. Whether you order a hot pour over, an espresso beverage, or a specialty cortado, you can be sure that the freshness of the beans will take center stage in their simple offerings. They also offer a selection of toast and granola if you need to fuel up. Visit Akron Coffee Roasters in their clean, minimalistic shop at 30 N. High St.
2. Chameleon Café
Chameleon Café is quirky, lively, and sure to put a little pep in your step on even the dreariest day. You can find your traditional drip coffee and basic espresso beverages here, as well as all the creative, seasonal specials that really make Chameleon shine, and a full menu of tasty sandwiches, salads, wraps, soups, and pastries. Enjoy your food and drinks inside their shop, or when the weather is nice, plop down at one of the colorful bistro tables on their sidewalk. Visit them at 23 S. Main St.
3. Evelyn's Coffee & Bánh Mì
Evelyn’s is a delightfully inviting coffee shop at 11 E. Exchange St. that specializes in smooth, bold, sweet Vietnamese iced coffee and delectable bánh mì sandwiches. They also boast a wide array of other coffee and espresso beverages made from beans roasted in small batches in house for optimal freshness, as well as milk tea with or without boba, smoothies, and a variety of Southeast Asian street foods.
4. The Daily Pressed
The Daily Pressed is a European-style coffee shop that also serves high-end cocktails at night. Try their house latte—the Daily—which features the flavors of chocolate, lavender, and vanilla, and is topped with creamy foam and nutmeg, or one of their more basic beverages made with their special Café Medici espresso blend. Visit The Daily Pressed at 323 S. Main St.
5. Sweet Mary's Bakery
The cases at Sweet Mary’s Bakery are full of flaky, decadent pastries in sweet and savory varieties that are guaranteed to melt in your mouth. They pair perfectly with the shop’s rich drip coffee, classic espresso beverages, and seasonal lattes and mochas. Sweet Mary’s makes all their syrups and mixes in house, and uses freshly roasted beans from Akron Coffee Roasters, grinded in house. Grab one of their (limited) seats at the front window, sit on the sidewalk, or enjoy your coffee and pastry on the go. Visit Sweet Mary’s Bakery at 76 E. Mill St.
6. The Tea Lady
Technically, The Tea Lady does offer hot coffee. However, based on her name, you can probably guess that she shines the brightest with her artfully steeped hot and iced teas. Visit The Tea Lady for grab-and-go beverages, scones, sandwiches, and salads, or make a reservation for an elevated sit-down teatime experience. Visit the Tea Lady at 35 S. Main St.
7. Muggswigz Coffee & Tea
Muggswigz, located at 373 S. Main St., is an earthy, calming shop that roasts, blends, and serves great coffee, as well as a line of high-quality direct-trade teas. While you enjoy their wide array of drinks (and maybe even one of their whole wheat cinnamon rolls, made fresh daily), be sure to check out the rotating works of local artists on their walls each month.
8. Stray Dog Café
Stray Dog Café is here to make Akron more Akrony. They’ve got a few locations throughout the neighborhood, but their main one is connected to the library at 75 S. Main St. Visit them for a hot coffee, tea, cocoa, latte, or cappuccino. Enjoy your drink at a table in the café, take it with you as you peruse the library (as long as your drink has a lid), or when the weather is good, have a seat at one of the tables on the library plaza.
9. The Green Dragon Inn
Saturdays are for coffee at The Green Dragon Inn. This medieval castle-themed board game bar and café is a unique spot perfect for meeting up with friends and having a relaxed afternoon playing games together. They offer a variety of coffee and espresso beverages made from Akron Coffee Roasters beans, as well as plenty of themed cocktails, mocktails, and more. The Green Dragon Inn is located at 115 E. Market St.
10. Urbean Café
Located in the Robert K. Pfaff Transit Center, Urbean Café is more than just a café; it’s also a workforce development program. They employ formerly incarcerated citizens who might otherwise have trouble getting back on their feet, and they serve up a robust menu for all three meals, all at prices that can’t be beat. Grab a hot coffee, tea, cocoa, or cappuccino, and accompany it with one of the many snack or food items available. Find the transit center at 631 S. Broadway St.
In addition to a full food menu and selection of cocktails, NOMZ proudly serves coffee and espresso made with beans from Akron Coffee Roasters. Add a twist to your beverage with one of their 11 flavor options, or even try a one-of-a-kind cereal milk latte. While you’re at NOMZ, be sure to check out the 140+ local vendors with wares for sale at Northside Marketplace. NOMZ is located inside the Northside Marketplace at 21 Furnace St.
Click here for a list of all places to eat and drink in downtown Akron.