I have made it a natural habit of mine to spend as much time as I can in coffee shops, at least when I travel. The culture and interior design are always aspects that I find inspiring, and having a quality cup of coffee or latte to go with it is a perfect combination. If you have ever been to San Francisco or are planning a trip there, you’ll quickly realize that there is no shortage of cute and quality coffee shops in the bay area. In fact, you could probably spend a day coffee shop hopping and feel like it was well worth your time.
Since living two hours away from San Francisco, we have driven up a few times to enjoy the coffee and culinary scene the city has to offer. Each time, we have taken our baby boy. Each coffee shop or pastry place we’ve been too has always been family friendly, which has taken off a lot of the pressure that usually comes with taking our baby to public places. Although there are plenty of places to choose from, many of which we haven’t yet visited, this guide highlights a few of our favorite places that we have gone to multiple times or are anxious to return to.
A GUIDE TO SAN FRANCISCO’S COFFEE SHOPS:
The Mill is my favorite coffee location. The interior is light-filled, white, accented with natural wood and subway tile. There is plenty of space to pull up a chair and enjoy one of their signature toasts. My favorite is there cinnamon sugar toast on a homemade slice of bread. They also serve a small variety of pastries and their coffee comes from Four Barrel Coffee, which I’ll mention in a bit.
Tucked into the side of a building, Hollow Cafe, has a charming green exterior, with a cozy white interior. Their coffee is delicious, but I like to go for their flavored lattes, like a vanilla latte, with vanilla bean specks, or their butterscotch latte.
Four Barrel Coffee
With their beans being roasted in the back, Four Barrel Coffee lives up to all the hype. They have a station specific to pour overs, where you can choose from a selection of high-quality blends.
Samovar Tea Lounge
Samovar Tea Lounge may not exactly fit under coffee shops, but I had to include it, because their Masala chai tea with almond milk is incredibly delicious. The aroma and spices, with the smoothness from the almond milk, is a definite must try. Not to mention that it is ladled out of a giant copper pan.
Although Dandelion Chocolate serves coffee, I like to go their for their chocolate drinks. Their House Hot Chocolate and Frozen Hot Chocolate are definite treats that should be indulged. They also make their chocolate in the back, with space to view them at work.
20th Century Cafe
Where Vienna meets Hungary and Budapest, 20th Century Cafe has a touch of elegance, with marble topped cafe tables and bistro chairs, and a burgundy velvet couch aligning the narrow wall. Their coffee is delicious and their Belgian hot chocolate is thick and decadent.
Craftsman and Wolves
Coffee, pastries, and an asiago sausage muffin with a soft boiled egg in the center, makes Craftsman and Wolves a definite place to visit. I also enjoy getting a bag of donut cake holes to go!
Tartine Bakery offers a warm and cozy space. Although they do serve coffee, they are known for their bread and pastries. But I added it to the list, because you need delicious pastries to go with coffee. Sometimes it can be hard to find a seat, with the mornings usually boasting a line out the door. This has been the case for me on weekends, so I’m not sure if the week days are different. As you walk in, there is a glass case filled with pastries and tarts. I recommend their lemon tart, which is extremely smooth, with the perfect balance of tartness and sweetness. They also have a menu if you are looking for a more substantial meal.
Le Marais Bakery
Le Marais Bakery has a Parisian feel with its tall windows, chic bistro tables and chairs, and light filled space. It’s a perfect place to dine in. They serve a variety of pastries, along with a menu, but I can definitely recommend their croissants.