Whether you’re looking for somewhere quaint to meet friends, a quiet place to study, or the best cup of coffee in town, Buffalo has it all. There’s a special kind of feeling that comes with having your own personal hang out, a feeling that simply can’t be replicated at a national chain or syndicate. Our city has earned a name for itself as one of the best “Food Cities” in the World! In fact, we actually made number three on the list. Activity flourishes in the downtown area, with progress being perpetually made. New places are opening and old favorites are being renovated. Therefore, in order to make it a little easier on you, here’s a list of some of our city’s best Cafes other than the classic Spot Coffee and Starbucks hangouts:
220 Grant St, Buffalo, NY 14213 / sweetness7.com
When it comes to city vibes and an eclectic feel, Sweetness 7 is the quintessential Buffalonian café. The atmosphere is perfect for several different occasions including solo work, meetups, a casual bite to eat, or a quick drink. Yes – they serve beer & wine. Yes, we love them for it.
957 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo, NY / facebook
Located on a corner of Elmwood, Café Aroma is an intimate neighborhood coffee house. Unlike a chain restaurant, such as Starbucks or Tim Hortons, it truly feels part of the community here. Prices are extremely reasonable and I’d highly recommend one of the Frittatas. Some Buffalonians believe you’ll find the best coffee in the city here!
402 Connecticut St, Buffalo, NY 14201 / breadhive.com
After two years of waiting, hoping, and wishing, Breadhive, Buffalo’s own bakery collective has finally evolved into a bakery and cafe. What makes the Breadhive Cafe different from their first setup is that the public can visit, eat in, and hang out inside the operation at tables which was not an option before (their hours are Tuesday 8am-6pm, Wednesday – Sunday 8am – 3pm). The space is chill, inviting, and has a bomb bread wrack. Expect bagels, breads, sandwiches, coffee and more when you visit.
62 Allen Street, Buffalo, NY / allenst.cafe59.com
Café 59 is an awesome place for either brunch or a nighttime meet up. Its peak hour is right around 9 o’clock, and on Fridays it’s open until midnight. The menu offers a wide variety of fares. The specialty sandwiches are very good, the salads are fresh and the entrees are delicious! The Café’s interior is a little bit different than the average set up. Most of the seating is featured around a number of long “bar style” counters. So pull up a seat and enjoy your meal!
Romeo and Juliet’s Caffe and Bakery
5199 Sheridan Dr., 2512 Sheridan Dr., 1292 Hertel Ave. / rjcaffe.com
Romeo and Juliet’s is a great place for meeting friends. It offers a fantastic menu for both lunch and dinner, at a reasonable price. The restaurant is a nice choice to dine out at or stop-by for a quick pick up. They’ve won numerous awards for their pizza, and have an assortment of homemade baked goods, perfect to satisfy your sweet-tooth! The Café draws its roots directly from Italy, as the owners and managers are from Brindisi, Milan, Rome and Florence. The atmosphere and cuisine are both authentically Italian!
5225 Sheridan Dr., Buffalo, NY 14221 / woltersbakery.com
Wolter’s Bakery is the perfect place to stop by for a treat. Located in the heart of the Village of Williamsville, Wolter’s is a family owned business with a lot to offer. Many of the surrounding residents visit religiously after weekend church (no pun intended), or throughout the week. Wolter’s features holiday treats that change with each season. For winter, they construct a marvelous gingerbread house that receives a lot of local attention. Be sure to sample a few of their Danishes! They are certainly some of the best around. The Pineapple Cheese Coffeecake is truly incredible, and the Cinnamon Bow Ties are equally renowned!
Ashker’s on Elmwood
1002 Elmwood Ave, Buffalo, NY 14222 / ashkersbuffalo.com
The breakfast plates are top notch at Ashker’s! You can never go wrong with the buttermilk pancakes, and the grilled egg white veggie omelet is fantastic! The café offers a variety of healthy options that usually aren’t available at other establishments. It’s nice to have a meal that tastes great and makes you feel great afterward. The juices and smoothies are some of the best in the city. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more extensive, delicious, drink selection.
265 Kenmore Ave, Buffalo, NY 14223 / facebook
J.J.’s is a true family restaurant. It’s difficult to find places that serve honest “home-cooked” meals, but you’ll definitely get that here. With the massive corporate chains, seemingly taking over the world, it’s nice to have an intimate breakfast at a locally owned place. The dishes at J.J.’s are almost too good to be true. The service is incredible, the food is delicious, and all that great breakfast will cost you is $5! If you’ve been searching for a little “hole in the wall,” where everyone will know your name, this is the place for you!
100 Elmwood Ave., Buffalo, NY 14201 / facebook
Café Taza is a small place inconspicuously tucked into a corner of Elmwood. It’s more of a “grab and go” sort of establishment, but there are almost always regulars chatting or hanging around. It has a pleasant atmosphere about it, and the names for some of the drinks are genuinely entertaining! Sample the “Mike Tyson”, or the “Gold Rush,” but whatever you do try something new! It’d be a travesty to visit, but refuse to order something a little different than usual. An off the beaten path adventure is always a fantastic experience.
Mimi’s Central Perk
24 Central Ave, Lancaster, NY 14086 / facebook
Mimi’s is a cute little café, and the owners are extremely friendly. The sandwiches are delightful and the soups incredible, making it a wonderful place to plan your brunch rendezvous. Gelato, pastries, smoothies and made to order café beverages are all among the staples. Everything is made with passion. You’ll notice immediately when you walk in. One of their homemade cookies makes a great cap to a fantastic meal!
Public Espresso at the Hotel Lafayette
391 Washington Street, Buffalo, NY 14203 / facebook
The Hotel Lafayette has always been a classic Buffalonian building. It was designed in conjunction with the first professional woman architect, making it both ground breaking and beautiful. In fact, in the building’s prime, the Hotel Lafayette was considered one of the 15 finest hotels in the country. Now, after its most recent renovation, the building supplies a fantastic coffee and baked goods outlet as well. The consensus among many, is that this new Café has the best coffee in Buffalo. That’s something for everyone to decide on their own, but for a place that opened just last March, Public is certainly making a name for itself. Give the baked goods by various local bakeries a try to – they’re some of the best in WNY.
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Five Points Bakery and Toast Café
44 Brayton St, Buffalo, NY 14213 / fivepointsbakery.com
The focus here is on offering a healthy locally grown, natural option. For the past five years Five Points has worked diligently to be an asset to our community. Originally the café opened with the idea of promoting whole grain bread, solely harvested by local farmers, but this quickly expanded. Honey, milk, eggs and a multitude of other local goods are now part of the selection. If you decide to stop by toast, whole grain breads and small, unique pastries are where it’s at. Definitely give the award winning cinnamon rolls a try!
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Caffeology – Ingenious Coffee and Tea
14201, 23 Allen St, Buffalo, NY 14202 / caffeology.us
With the influx of activity around the downtown area, Caffeology is yet another recent coffee start up. Opening in October, it’s a place “where the atmosphere is as good as the coffee.” They serve Joe Bean coffee from Rochester, hence you know its quality! The baristas are both intelligent and friendly, so don’t be afraid to ask for a suggestion. Caffeology is the perfect place to try something a little out of your comfort zone!
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