It’s a new year! 2020—a new decade, a new opportunity to experience some of the Twin Cities’ best coffee shops and cafés. We’ve got a lot to choose from already—and I have my own set of favorites—and the roster keeps growing. Whether you’re looking for your new hangout spot or just a good coffee beverage, you’ll want to visit these gems more than once.
Duck Duck Coffee
The coffee scene (here and around the U.S.) has been inundated with minimalist-inspired coffee shops. This isn’t a bad thing in the slightest, but now it’s time for the quirky and colorful coffee shops to rise and shine. Duck Duck Coffee in south Minneapolis is just that—complete with a fun menu, knick-knack galore, and plenty of magazines (from different decades, of course). Peek the fun blue monster cut-out on the wall to your left and the selection of games you can play with friends. The large windows make for a sunny atmosphere and the function space is perfect for dates, hangouts, or studying.
1830 E. 38th St., Minneapolis, duckduckmlps.com
Due Focacceria, located on a quiet corner of Fairview Avenue in St. Paul, opened just five short months ago, but already it’s a favorite for its focaccia bread and delicious Italian sandwiches. Equal parts eatery, bar, and café, Due is worth a visit for its coffee and espresso beverages, too. (My vote is for the cappuccino, if you’re looking for a recommendation). For a quiet visit, try a weekday afternoon. Sit on the bar side for stunning natural light and lots of windows, or walk into the next room for a cozier, darker setting. In the warmer months, Due Focacceria’s patio is the place to be, but if you’re hoping to get some work done on your laptop, don’t worry. Undercover outlets on the bar side can be found near the baseboards.
475 Fairview Ave. S., St. Paul, duefocacceria.com
Located in the lobby area of The Nordic on Washington Avenue, FRGMNT Coffee is spacious, modern, group-friendly, and perfect for both a quiet Saturday morning or a chaotic Monday afternoon. Owned by Ben Banse and his partner, Sarah Roehl, FRGMNT opened in November 2019 and works to partner with high quality roasters, creates delicious espresso beverages, and offers decadent pastries from Honey and Rye in St. Louis Park—a first-ever partnership for the acclaimed St. Louis Park bakery.
729 N. Washington Ave., Minneapolis, frgmntcoffee.com
7 Corners Coffee
Nestled on the east end of Washington Avenue, butting up to the University of Minnesota, 7 Corners Coffee’s mission to connect people. The space reflects the sentiment; you’ll be hard pressed to find this much space at any other Twin Cities coffee shop. Bright and spacious with yellow accent walls, high ceilings, and cute little plants on many of the tables, 7 Corners Coffee is ready for friends hoping to catch up, the business professional focused on a deadline, or students banding together to pass an exam or project.
1851 S. Washington Ave., Suite D, Minneapolis, 7cornerscoffee.com
Spyhouse at the Hotel Emery
Spyhouse’s many cafés are Twin Cities staples at this point, but this café in downtown Minneapolis is hands down the most stunning. It helps that it’s housed in the beautiful lobby of the Hotel Emery and juxtaposed by Giulia, the Emery’s in-house Italian restaurant. Visitors can expect tons of beautiful greenery, classic marble pillars, and black and white tile flooring in the lobby and dim lighting, stripped wood floors, and a cozy seating area (which includes a fireplace) nearer the coffee shop. Larger tables are perfect for offsite meetings for professionals working downtown, and the low tables, chairs, and benches are great for cozy catch-ups with friends. Plus, you can enjoy any of the usual Spyhouse concoctions you love, like the Carmella or Spygirl latte.
215 S Fourth St., Minneapolis, hotelemery.com
It’s been a while since St. Paul’s Grand Avenue has added a coffee shop to its list of businesses, and this one is prettier than even your most prolific Instagram foodie could hope for. More now than ever before, a memorable atmosphere matters. People travel impressive distances for that one must-have photo on social media. For Thirty-Six Café, it’s the shop’s gorgeous pink flower wall piece, which fits in perfectly with the café’s soft white and pink color scheme, floral décor, and gold accents. Co-owned by Macy Lee and Soua Vang, Thirty Six Café not only offers delicious coffee and to-die-for aesthetic—it’s primarily raved about for its menu of souffle pancakes, waffles, and other delicious items. Who says you can’t have dessert for breakfast?
949 Grand Ave., St. Paul, facebook.com/thirty-six-cafe
Check out 6 Minnesota Coffee Shops Worth the Drive for more coffee destinations in the state or our reviews about other Twin Cities coffee shops: