Instagram Hyped New York City Coffee Shops – here’s the tea. Are they worth your time?

Keep reading to find out if some of the top photographed Instagram cafes in New York City are worth your time.

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If there’s one thing you take away from this post:

Instagram aesthetic doesn’t always equal quality coffee.

Instagram New York City Coffee Guide in 2020. Are they worth all of the social media hype? 2020 NYC Cafe Guide.

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Keep reading to see what I rate these famous NYC cafes out of 10 for both coffee quality and overall aesthetic.

Related Posts:

NYC Coffee Guide

& West Village NYC Coffee Guide

Are these New York hyped cafes worth your time and money?

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Urban Backyard

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Coffee: 5/10

Aesthetic: 11/10

I really wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt after the first time I went… so I went again; the second time sadly wasn’t any better. It’s hard because the aesthetic is so adorable and on point, I just wish the coffee was actually good. When I went here I genuinely pulled the “take photos, have a couple sips, then throw out the coffee”. Sadly just wasn’t worth my money.

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Maman

Coffee: 8/10

Aesthetic: 10/10

I was worried going here the first time that this wasn’t going to live up to the hype. To my surprise, the coffee was pretty good, especially at their Flatiron location. The have the cutest and most delicious baked goods (even vegan ones too) and it’s a nice treat to go for a latte and a sweet treat for sure. I still dream about my vegan carrot and pumpkin loaf.

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Coffee N’ Clothes

Coffee: 9/10

Aesthetic: 9.5/10

A pretty popular find on instagram with the way you can pick what designer logo to have sprinkled on top of your coffee. I was a bit worried coming here at first, as just because people post about it for its’ looks doesn’t exactly mean quality.

Nonetheless, the barista was very talented and I would totally go back! It was honestly a really good latte. It’s just outside of Soho too so it’s a more convenient location.

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Remi Flower & Coffee

Coffee: 6/10

Aesthetic: 10/10

With Remi, the best way to sum this spot up is it’s a flower shop first and a coffee shop second. Their coffee was okay but in my opinion I felt this place is really only popular because of the instagram aesthetics and stunning flowers. The coffee was good but in a place like NYC you need to be incredible or it just doesn’t cut it for me. Also, it could have been an off day for the barista so I wanted to make sure to mention this place regardless.

I definitely will at one point go back to give it another shot, even if it’s just for the aesthetic. Also something to note is this cafe is out of the way of a lot.

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Felix Roasting Co

Coffee: 7/10

Aesthetic: 8.5/10

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This coffee shop only recently has been hyped on both Instagram & tiktok. Nonetheless, of course I had to try it. Similar to Remi, the barista could have had an off day but the coffee wasn’t anything great. The aesthetic was pretty cute but I am definitely a plants – bright light – kind of person. Probably won’t go back though. There are so many other incredible Soho coffee shops just down the street.

SOHO COFFEE GUIDE COMING SOOOON!

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What do you think of Instagram hyped cafes? Do you find yourself falling into the trap and going to them?

As always, thanks so much for reading. Make sure to follow me over on my…

Thanks so much if you’ve read this far. I appreciate it so much.

Lots of love,

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July 2020 specialty Coffee roaster Favorites

The best coffee roasters I’ve brewed at home this past month!

(a bit behind on the months but that’s ok)!

I’ve been trying so many different coffee at home the last couple months so I figured it was about time to start doing a post on my monthly coffee favorites!

To read next:

Coffee Selection Guide – how to choose what coffee beans to purchase

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Methodological

Their Colombia – Frontera De Planadas had this GORGEOUS nutty undertone that popped beautifully once it started to cool.

I’m very excited to try out more from this roaster. Also, this packaging? hello? also gorgeous!

If you love coffee with a nice nutty undertone this coffee is perfect for you.

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Graziella

Graziella’s Coffee Company’s Ecuador – Loja is so flavorful! I was super impressed with the way the caramel undertones are not only present right after it’s brewed, but it sustains as it cools as well. Super nice toffee/caramel kinda cup!

Super sweet team as well over there 🙂

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Taza Manga

Taza manga – Signature Coffee from Taste the Origin is a super smooth and balanced single origin coffee from Colombia!

I was so happy to come across a site that highlights fair trade single origin coffee (coffee that’s farmed and roasted from the same place). This blend even has a subtle nutty undertone that pulls through as it cools!

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For more coffee content make sure to keep up with my instagram! I’ve been posting lots of full coffee reviews and unboxings over there.

Lots of love,

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The Best Coffee Shops in New York City

My favorite coffee spots in NYC – so far

As I’m sure you can imagine, New York City has endless amounts of coffee shops, where some are better than others. Even with the amount of times I’m able to take a trip into the city (I’m super lucky that I don’t live terribly far), I still have so many more places to try. So keep up with my coffee journey here as well as on my instagram.

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If there’s two things you take away from this post:

  1. Instagram aesthetic doesn’t always equal quality coffee
  2. If you ever see “Australian inspired cafe” just automatically assume it’s gonna be incredible

Keep reading to see what I rate these spots out of 10.

Coffee n’ Clothes

Noho – 11 Bond Street

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A pretty popular find on instagram with the way you can pick what designer logo to have sprinkled on top of your coffee. I was a bit worried coming here at first, as just because people post about it for its’ looks doesn’t exactly mean quality.

Nonetheless, the barista was very talented and I would totally go back! It was honestly a really good latte.

Coffee n’ Clothes: 10/10 for quality & aesthetic

Ruby’s Cafe

Soho – 219 Mulberry Street A

Northern Noho – 198 E 11th Street

Kips Bay – 442 3rd Ave

I’ve been a couple times (as they have multiple locations) and both times it was suuuuper packed so definitely plan ahead for that!! It is more of a sit down place over takeaway but the food is simple and on point.

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I was so impressed by the hospitality of the staff and how QUICK everything comes out. This is an Australian owned and inspired cafe and it sure shows, in the best way! Australian & Kiwi cafes BLOW MY MIND with how quickly their food comes out and at no cost to the quality.

The first time I went with my brother the server clearly had an Australian accent and she was the sweetest and cared to start a conversation with us. It’s the little things guys.

Ruby’s Cafe: 10/10 for great avocado toast, coffee and quality. The ultimate trio.

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Bluestone Lane

*too many locations to list but you get the gist*

The only real “chain” I’ll mention; it’s also Australian owned and inspired (are you sensing a theme here). With the times I’ve gone here I am always pleasantly surprised with the care their baristas take.

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This spot is really good if you’re in a pinch and haven’t really heard of any other coffee shops around.

Bluestone Lane: 8.5 for consistency and quality

Kaigo Coffee Room

Soho – 120 C Lafayette Street

Brooklyn Heights – 139 Bridge Park Drive

The barista really nailed the micro-foam and as you can guess that is super super important to me. I really appreciate milk frothed to be really light but not too airy – the perfect balance. I definitely want to go back here as it’s been too long.

Kaigo Coffee Room: 9.5 for care & precision

Partners Coffee

Greenpoint – 125 N 6th Street

Greenwich Village – 44 Charles Street

Koreatown – 160 5th Ave

Midtown – 81 E 45th Street

This is one of the few spots in Brooklyn that I’ve been able to try. Not only are they a more well known roaster, they also kill it in the cafe scene; I couldn’t even get a table when I went. This would be the perfect spot to go to if I had some computer work to get done.

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Partners Coffee: 10/10 for quality and atmosphere

Hutch & Waldo

Upper East Side – 247 E 81st Street

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Yet again, another Australian owned & inspired cafe!!! This spot was an even mix between takeaway and sit-down. It’s a pretty small place but there was outdoor seating too (and lots of cute pups)! This is a good solid option if you’re in the upper east side looking for a good stop. It’s not too far from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Hutch & Waldo: 9/10, its a good spot but not as good as Ruby’s Cafe in my opinion.

Saltwater Coffee

East Village – 345 E 12th Street

West Village – 126 Waverly Place

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Okay guys, I’m laughing at myself. I don’t mean for this post to turn into all Australian inspired cafes but those Ozzies genuinely slay the rest of the world with their coffee culture.

Saltwater honestly was incredible. It’s a small spot with minimal seating but it’s so bright and welcoming that all is good in the world. Barista’s slayed the micro-foam. Any coffee spot with a flat white on the menu usually is a good sign of quality baristas (as a lot of people don’t know, or care to know what a flat white is).

According to google, “A flat white is a coffee drink consisting of espresso with micro-foam (steamed milk with small, fine bubbles and a glossy or velvety consistency).”

Saltwater Coffee: 10.5/10 for quality, care, incredibleness (is that a word?) & aesthetic

Paper Coffee

Koreatown – 44 West 29th Street

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It’s the ultimate mid-town stop. Great coffee right in the center of a lot. My friends were even amazed by their chocolate chip cookies; so if a nice gooey, warm chocolate chip cookie paired with insanely good coffee is your vibe then this place is made for you.

Paper Coffee: 9.5/10 for convenience and quality

Remi Flower & Coffee

Midtown – 906 2nd Ave

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I guess the best way to sum this spot up is it’s a flower shop first and a coffee shop second. Their coffee was good but in my opinion I felt this place is really only popular because of the instagram aesthetics and stunning flowers. I would still recommend to give this place a visit, but it’s out of the way from a lot.

Remi Flower & Coffee: 8/10 mostly for aesthetic. The coffee was good but in a place like NYC you need to be incredible or it just doesn’t cut it for me. Also it could have been an off day for the barista so I wanted to make sure to mention this place regardless. I definitely will go back to give it another shot.

Have you explored New York City?

What are your top NYC coffee spots?

If you’re on the look-out for more coffee content head over to my instagram or check out some similar posts I’ve done:

A guide to Portland, Oregon’s coffee scene

The 3 things I look for when choosing a coffee shop to spend my money at

5 things you NEED to make the best coffee at home

Thanks so much if you’ve read this far. I appreciate it so much.

Lots of love,

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5 things you NEED to make the best coffee at home

Let’s be real, making coffee at home can get intimidating. There’s so many different products and techniques to go about brewing at home. You could just go the simple route and use a keurig or another kind of machine that makes the coffee for you but where’s the fun in that?

I’m here to help make it simple.

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My method of choice is pour over. It’s as simple as it sounds: you pour hot water over coffee grinds and that’s it for the most part. Of course there are actual techniques to do the pour over method properly (like wetting the filter before hand, letting the grinds bloom, etc). If you’re interested in a detailed post about pour over techniques let me know!!

First and foremost you’re going to need to choose if you want to tackle whole beans or already pre-ground coffee. Pre-ground coffee does really decrease the flavors and quality of the coffee (in my opinion). I chose to purchase whole beans and ground them by the cup before each use.

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1.Coffee Scale

I use the Hario V60 Drip Coffee Scale.

HA! you can tell I don’t clean mine very often… oopsies.

A battery-powered, lightweight scale that precisely weighs out my preferred coffee bean to water ratio. It is a bit pricier but after the amount of people who recommended this to me I couldn’t help but want to test it out. I didn’t use one for the longest time (as you can also weigh out your beans and water by volume) but this has been a GAME CHANGER in increasing my precision.

I felt that doing pour over by volume instead of weight was really just me eyeballing how much water to use and crossing my fingers hoping it turned out okay. Furthermore, measuring coffee by volume didn’t make much sense to me (here comes my science background) because different roasts and beans of different origins have different densities. Anyway, do what makes you happy!!! This is just my methodology of choice.

2.Coffee Grinder

I use the manual burr coffee grinder by Zulay Kitchen. Although I have worked with them in the past over on my instagram, this is not affiliated in any way.

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The perfect, balanced cup of coffee starts with accurate tools so I can definitely recommend this grinder for you to try. It’s the perfect durable and budget friendly grinder (its only $14 right now). With the adjustable grind settings it’s helped each bean grind consistently so the flavor gets captured evenly throughout. It’s also super quiet so it helps when I’m up early in the morning for my first cup of the day.

In the past I used a different grinder without anyway to adjust the settings so I was kinda just spitballing it. As you can guess, that didn’t turn out the greatest for me as each grind was a different size and shape…… so let’s stick to a grinder with settings shall we!!!!

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3.Cleaning Brush

I use one by Bretani.

Don’t you just get frustrated when you can’t get the last of the coffee grounds out of your grinder?

This cheap $5 purchase has really helped me fix that issue. It’s super budget friendly and obviously aims to clean your grinder as well! Just a little tool to help you out along the way.

4.Pour Over Coffeemaker

I use the Chemex 6-cup glass pour over coffee maker.

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When I first started really caring about the quality of my coffee at home, I got a much cheaper pour over maker to start. But once the day came where my brother accidentally shattered it, I knew it was a sign to drop a bit more money to get the one that was better quality. My thought process in choosing a Chemex is that I always saw them for sale at my local coffee shops, so I guess that planted the seed.

Nonetheless, I have only good things to say about it. Chemex does sell smaller ones (like 3-cup) and also larger ones (like 8-cup). They are made of a super sturdy glass. I’ve had mine for months now and I never ran into any issues with scratches or cracks or anything. It’s just a great classic coffee maker.

5.Pour Over Filters

After trial & error, I can whole-heartedly recommend purchasing the paper filters made, in fact, for the Chemex.

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Unfortunately it seems they are sold out on amazon but I get mine at my local whole foods! These filters are super sturdy and I’ve never had them fall through or break in the middle of a pour (which has happened to me with other filters).

Also there is a much more sustainable route with reusable filters but I have yet to find one of those I like using. So any recommendations let me know in the comments!!

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There you have it! My 5 must haves to make the perfect cup of coffee at home (besides the coffee)!

*NOTE* the amazon links are affiliate links! So using them does support me and my coffee addiciton.

Let me know if you’d be interested in a detailed post of my favorite roasters and blends to enjoy at home! I did a mini one over on my instagram.

What are your essentials to have at home to make your morning cup?

Lots of love,

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Top 3 things I look for when choosing a coffee shop

Quality coffee is important to me. Also, I don’t want to waste my money on bad, burnt, and watery coffee.

We all know that coffee can get expensive too so here are some of the things I really look at before choosing where to spend my money and give my time. I especially look for all of these things when traveling.

Before I get into it, I have posted a lot about my favorite places on my instagram.

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If I had to pick one thing I always always do and make of is this first thing.

  1. Their social media presence (especially instagram)!! I know theres the whole thing about not judging a book by its cover but seriously, think about it: if you go on a coffee shop’s instagram and you see they are being tagged in a lot of photos… what does that tell you? and most importantly, if you see lots of photos of latte art… what does that tell you?

It sure tells me that:

  1. Customers find their experience good enough to post about.
  2. Their baristas are well trained if they are able to get the perfect micro-foam with espresso-based beverages. If I see a lot of photos showcasing the barista’s talent & precision, I find that very appealing. I typically do not go for cafes where every coffee drink is hidden in whipped cream and syrup.

Once looking at a cafe’s aesthetic visually, I usually will then see if they have a website to look at a menu.

2. Their menu!! I know not every cafe has a menu posted, and not that it is a necessary thing either. But again, it helps me get a feel for how the shop views quality. If the menu is filled with lots of sugary syrups and other fillers to hide the quality of the coffee, I am most likely not interested. UNLESS it seems that they make their own syrups or use more natural sweeteners for their drinks.

This is a huge thing to get a feel of a cafe once you first walk into it too. What’s their menu like? What care do they put into creating their menu?

This last thing is more geared towards once you get to the cafe.

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3. The overall experience you get when walking in!! What is the vibe you’re getting? What kind of tools are behind the counter to ensure quality? If a barista is making coffee, what are they doing? what sounds do you hear when they are frothing milk for an espresso? does it sound like a dying cat, or does it sound like a smooth hum?

I think of these things once I enter a cafe. Even if they had a great social media and online presence, if I walk in and I see, feel or hear things that don’t give me a good feeling I will save my money and go somewhere else 🙂

I just wanted to mention that this post is inspired by one I saw last week. I really enjoyed reading it so here’s my take on the topic.

Do you guys look at a shop’s social media before going? Is that important to you?

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Thanks for reading. I’m hoping to post a lot more coffee guides like this one of cities and other places I’ve travelled around to.

Let me know what you think!

Lots of love,

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