Top 10 Best Coffee Shops In Lawrence, Kansas

Lawrence, Kansas, nestled in the heart of the Midwest, is not just a typical college town; it’s a vibrant community brimming with culture, history, and, of course, coffee. Whether you’re a local resident, a student at the University of Kansas, or just passing through, exploring the coffee scene in Lawrence is a must-do experience. From cozy, locally-owned cafes to bustling, trendy hotspots, Lawrence offers a diverse array of coffee shops to suit every taste and preference.

Top 10 Coffee Shops In Lawrence, Kansas

  1. Alchemy Coffee & Bake House: Located in the heart of downtown Lawrence, Alchemy Coffee & Bake House is known for its artisanal coffee blends and freshly baked pastries. With a cozy ambiance and friendly staff, it’s the perfect spot to start your day or unwind with a cup of joe.

  2. 1900 Barker Bakery & Café: Combining the charm of a bakery with the comfort of a cafe, 1900 Barker Bakery & Café offers a delightful selection of coffee, pastries, and light bites. Situated in a historic building, this cafe exudes old-world charm and is a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

  3. Raven Book Store and Raven Café: A unique blend of literature and caffeine, Raven Book Store and Raven Café is a haven for book lovers and coffee enthusiasts. Browse through their extensive collection of books while sipping on a freshly brewed cup of coffee or tea.

  4. Decade Coffee: With its retro-inspired decor and laid-back atmosphere, Decade Coffee is a beloved hangout spot for Lawrence locals. Enjoy a wide range of coffee drinks, from classic espresso to inventive specialty brews, all crafted with precision and care.

  5. La Prima Tazza: Tucked away in the bustling downtown area, La Prima Tazza is a hidden gem known for its rich espresso and cozy ambiance. Whether you’re looking for a quick caffeine fix or a leisurely coffee date, this charming cafe has you covered.

  6. Z’s Divine Espresso: A true Lawrence institution, Z’s Divine Espresso has been serving up top-notch coffee and community vibes for over two decades. Step inside and you’ll be greeted by the aroma of freshly ground beans and the friendly faces of regulars who call this place home.

  7. Aimee’s Coffeehouse: Quirky, eclectic, and full of character, Aimee’s Coffeehouse is a must-visit destination for coffee aficionados in Lawrence. Indulge in their signature drinks, like the Lavender Latte or Honey Bee Mocha, and soak in the vibrant atmosphere.

  8. Mass Street Soda: While primarily known for its extensive selection of craft sodas, Mass Street Soda also boasts a cozy coffee bar where you can sample a variety of espresso drinks and brewed coffee. It’s the perfect place to satisfy your caffeine cravings while exploring downtown Lawrence.

  9. Holcomb’s Sentry Market: A hidden gem tucked away in North Lawrence, Holcomb’s Sentry Market may not be your typical coffee shop, but it’s a favorite among locals for its friendly service and delicious brews. Grab a cup of coffee and browse the aisles for unique finds and local products.

  10. Milton’s Coffee & Wine: As the name suggests, Milton’s Coffee & Wine offers the best of both worlds – premium coffee and fine wine. Whether you’re in the mood for a morning pick-me-up or a relaxing evening sip, this charming cafe has something for everyone.

Historical Overview

The coffee culture in Lawrence, Kansas, has deep roots that date back to the 19th century. As settlers migrated westward, they brought with them a love for coffee, turning it into a staple beverage in the region. The first coffee shops in Lawrence sprung up during the late 1800s, serving as gathering places for locals to socialize, exchange ideas, and enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee.

Over the years, the coffee scene in Lawrence has evolved, reflecting changes in taste preferences, demographics, and cultural influences. From traditional diners and mom-and-pop cafes to modern espresso bars and specialty roasters, Lawrence has embraced a diverse range of coffee establishments, each with its own unique charm and character.


One of the defining features of the coffee scene in Lawrence is its diversity. From cozy neighborhood cafes to trendy urban hotspots, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you prefer a classic cup of black coffee or a fancy espresso-based drink, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your caffeine cravings.

Moreover, Lawrence’s coffee shops reflect the city’s rich cultural tapestry, with many establishments incorporating local ingredients, flavors, and traditions into their menu offerings. From locally roasted beans to homemade syrups and pastries, Lawrence’s coffee scene celebrates the region’s culinary heritage while embracing innovation and creativity.


Coffee shops play a vital role in the fabric of Lawrence’s community, serving as more than just places to grab a quick caffeine fix. They serve as gathering spots where friends meet, colleagues collaborate, and strangers strike up conversations. They’re also venues for live music, poetry readings, and art exhibitions, adding to the city’s vibrant cultural landscape.

Furthermore, coffee shops contribute to Lawrence’s economy by providing employment opportunities, supporting local suppliers and artisans, and attracting visitors from near and far. They also play a role in promoting sustainability and social responsibility, with many establishments prioritizing ethically sourced beans, eco-friendly practices, and community engagement initiatives.

Coffee Shop Etiquette

While Lawrence’s coffee shops are known for their laid-back atmosphere and friendly vibe, it’s essential to observe proper etiquette when visiting these establishments. Here are a few tips to ensure a pleasant experience for yourself and those around you:

  1. Respect the space: Whether you’re studying, catching up with friends, or enjoying a quiet moment alone, be mindful of others around you. Keep noise levels to a minimum and avoid hogging tables during peak hours.

  2. Support local: Whenever possible, opt for locally owned coffee shops over chain establishments. Not only does this support the local economy, but it also fosters a sense of community and camaraderie.

  3. Say please and thank you: A little politeness goes a long way. Remember to greet the barista with a smile, say please when placing your order, and thank them when you receive your drink.

  4. Clean up after yourself: Be sure to dispose of your trash properly and clean up any spills or messes you may make. Keeping the space clean helps ensure a pleasant environment for everyone.

  5. Tip generously: If you receive excellent service, consider leaving a tip for your barista. Even a small tip can make a big difference and show your appreciation for their hard work.


In conclusion, the coffee scene in Lawrence, Kansas, is as diverse and dynamic as the city itself. From cozy neighborhood cafes to bustling urban roasteries, there’s no shortage of options for coffee enthusiasts to explore and enjoy. Whether you’re sipping on a classic cup of black coffee or indulging in a fancy espresso-based concoction, Lawrence’s coffee shops offer something for every palate and preference.

Moreover, these establishments play a vital role in fostering community connections, promoting local culture and cuisine, and contributing to the city’s economic vitality. By supporting Lawrence’s coffee scene, you’re not just getting your caffeine fix – you’re also investing in the vibrancy and prosperity of the community as a whole. So the next time you’re in Lawrence, be sure to take some time to savor the local coffee culture and discover the hidden gems that make this city truly special.