Top 10 Best Coffee Shops In Saint Paul, Minnesota

Saint Paul, Minnesota, is a city brimming with history, culture, and a vibrant coffee scene. Nestled along the banks of the Mississippi River, this city is renowned for its diverse neighborhoods, stunning architecture, and welcoming atmosphere. Among its many charms are its numerous coffee shops, which serve as community hubs, artistic spaces, and sanctuaries for caffeine aficionados. In this article, we will delve into the rich tapestry of coffee culture in Saint Paul, exploring its top 10 coffee shops, historical significance, cultural diversity, and the role these establishments play in the fabric of the city. Additionally, we’ll discuss the etiquettes observed in these coffee shops and conclude with reflections on their enduring appeal.

Top 10 Coffee Shops In Saint Paul, Minnesota

  1. Spyhouse Coffee Roasters – Located in the heart of downtown Saint Paul, Spyhouse Coffee Roasters is renowned for its meticulously sourced beans and expertly crafted brews. The cozy ambiance, paired with their delectable pastries, makes it a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

  2. Nina’s Coffee Cafe – Tucked away in the historic Cathedral Hill neighborhood, Nina’s Coffee Cafe exudes charm and character. With its eclectic decor, friendly staff, and exceptional espresso drinks, it’s a beloved spot for coffee connoisseurs seeking a cozy retreat.

  3. True Stone Coffee Roasters – True Stone Coffee Roasters takes pride in their commitment to sustainability and ethical sourcing practices. Located in the bustling West Seventh neighborhood, this coffee shop offers a wide array of single-origin coffees and artisanal blends, all roasted in-house to perfection.

  4. Bootstrap Coffee Roasters – A relative newcomer to the Saint Paul coffee scene, Bootstrap Coffee Roasters has quickly made a name for itself with its innovative approach to coffee roasting and brewing. Their sleek and modern cafe in the Midway neighborhood is a must-visit for coffee enthusiasts seeking bold flavors and creative concoctions.

  5. Groundswell – As the name suggests, Groundswell is a grassroots coffee shop that prides itself on its commitment to community engagement and social responsibility. With a focus on organic and fair-trade ingredients, this cozy cafe in the Hamline-Midway neighborhood offers delicious coffee and wholesome fare in a welcoming atmosphere.

  6. Workhorse Coffee Bar – Nestled in the bustling Lowertown district, Workhorse Coffee Bar is a favorite haunt for local artists, professionals, and students alike. With its industrial-chic decor, friendly vibe, and expertly brewed coffee, it’s the perfect spot to refuel and recharge.

  7. Claddagh Coffee – Located in the vibrant West Seventh neighborhood, Claddagh Coffee is a cozy retreat known for its warm hospitality and delicious drinks. Whether you’re in the mood for a classic espresso or a specialty latte, this neighborhood gem has you covered.

  8. Blackeye Roasting Co. – For those seeking a caffeine kick with a twist, Blackeye Roasting Co. is the place to go. Specializing in nitro cold brews and innovative coffee cocktails, this hip cafe in the Payne-Phalen neighborhood offers a unique and unforgettable coffee experience.

  9. Anelace Coffee – With its minimalist aesthetic and expertly curated menu, Anelace Coffee is a haven for coffee purists. Located in the trendy Northeast neighborhood, this sleek and stylish cafe is dedicated to showcasing the true essence of coffee through meticulous brewing methods and impeccable service.

  10. Groundswell Midway – Groundswell’s second location in the Midway neighborhood brings the same commitment to community and quality that has made its original cafe a beloved institution. With its spacious interior, friendly staff, and delicious coffee, it’s the perfect spot to gather with friends or find a moment of solitude.

Historical Overview

The history of coffee in Saint Paul is intertwined with the city’s growth and development over the past two centuries. While coffee drinking was initially introduced to the region by European settlers in the 19th century, it wasn’t until the late 20th century that coffee culture began to flourish in earnest. The rise of independent coffee shops in the 1990s and early 2000s coincided with a renewed interest in artisanal coffee roasting and brewing techniques, paving the way for the diverse and thriving coffee scene that exists in Saint Paul today.

One of the most significant milestones in Saint Paul’s coffee history was the opening of Cafe Latte in 1985. This iconic cafe, located in the Grand Avenue neighborhood, quickly became a beloved gathering place for locals, offering a wide array of coffee drinks, pastries, and desserts in a welcoming and elegant setting. Cafe Latte’s success inspired a new generation of entrepreneurs to enter the coffee business, leading to a proliferation of independent coffee shops across the city.

In recent years, Saint Paul has witnessed a resurgence of interest in specialty coffee, with a growing number of roasters and cafes dedicated to sourcing and showcasing the finest beans from around the world. This renewed focus on quality and craftsmanship has elevated the city’s coffee scene to new heights, earning Saint Paul a reputation as a destination for coffee lovers seeking exceptional brews and vibrant cafe culture.


One of the defining features of Saint Paul’s coffee scene is its diversity, both in terms of the types of coffee available and the people who frequent its cafes. From traditional espresso drinks to innovative cold brews and pour-over techniques, there is something for every palate in Saint Paul’s coffee shops. Moreover, the city’s coffee culture reflects its rich tapestry of cultural influences, with cafes offering a diverse array of international flavors and culinary traditions.

In addition to its culinary diversity, Saint Paul’s coffee scene is also characterized by its inclusivity and sense of community. Many cafes in the city serve as gathering places for people from all walks of life, fostering connections and conversations among patrons. Whether you’re a student studying for exams, an artist seeking inspiration, or a professional catching up on work, you’ll find a warm welcome and a friendly atmosphere in Saint Paul’s coffee shops.


Coffee shops play a multifaceted role in the fabric of Saint Paul, serving as more than just places to grab a cup of joe. They are social hubs where friends gather to catch up, colleagues meet for business meetings, and strangers strike up conversations with one another. Moreover, coffee shops serve as cultural institutions, showcasing local artwork, hosting live music performances, and providing a platform for creative expression.

Beyond their social and cultural significance, coffee shops also play an important economic role in Saint Paul, contributing to the vitality and vibrancy of the city’s neighborhoods. Many cafes source their ingredients locally, support small-scale farmers, and provide employment opportunities for members of the community. In this way, coffee shops serve as engines of economic growth and sustainability, helping to build stronger and more resilient neighborhoods.

Coffee Shop Etiquette

While each coffee shop in Saint Paul has its own unique ambiance and atmosphere, there are certain etiquettes that are generally observed by patrons:

  1. Respect the space: Be mindful of other patrons and avoid disruptive behavior, such as talking loudly on your phone or playing music without headphones.

  2. Ordering: When ordering, be polite and patient, especially during busy times. Have your order ready and be prepared to wait your turn.

  3. Tipping: It’s customary to leave a tip for baristas, especially if you plan to stay and enjoy your drink in the cafe. A tip of 15-20% is generally considered appropriate.

  4. Sharing tables: If the cafe is crowded, be willing to share a table with others. It’s a great opportunity to strike up a conversation with fellow coffee lovers.

  5. Cleaning up: Dispose of your trash properly and clean up after yourself. This helps to keep the cafe clean and welcoming for everyone.

  6. Laptop usage: If you plan to work on your laptop in the cafe, be mindful of others and avoid hogging table space for an extended period. Consider taking breaks and giving others a chance to use the tables.


In conclusion, the coffee shops of Saint Paul, Minnesota, are much more than just places to grab a cup of coffee—they are vibrant community spaces that reflect the city’s rich history, cultural diversity, and spirit of innovation. From cozy neighborhood cafes to sleek and stylish roasteries, each coffee shop offers its own unique blend of flavors, ambiance, and hospitality. Whether you’re a longtime resident or a first-time visitor, exploring Saint Paul’s coffee scene is sure to be a rewarding and enriching experience. So next time you find yourself in the Twin Cities, be sure to indulge in a cup of coffee at one of Saint Paul’s many delightful cafes—you won’t be disappointed!