ALFRED COFFEE • LOS ANGELES, CA
This coffee shop coined the tagline “But first, coffee” – Alfred just gets me. Of course, I love this place for their stand-out décor like neon signs, slogans painted in trendy fonts, artistic graphics on to-go cups, and floral wallpaper. It’s literally a blogger’s paradise. The multiple locations – Melrose Place, Brentwood, and Silverlake – are each distinctly beautiful and unique. All roast Stumptown coffee and serve up some pretty amazing caffeinated drinks like an espresso shot served in a chocolate-lined waffle cone.
LA COLOMBE • PHILADELPHIA, PA
Yes, La Colombe has multiple locations around the US, but the beautifully converted warehouse in the trending Fishtown neighborhood is by far my favorite. The spacious environment is accented with preserved industrial pipes, white subway tiling, and a Steve Powers mural painted directly on exposed brick. This flagship coffee house is frequented by hipsters, artists, and young professionals. Their drink of choice? The draft lattes – frothy, creamy, and a touch of sweet straight out of a keg. I highly recommend.
CULTURE ESPRESSO • NEW YORK, NY
Unpaid internships for contemporary fashion labels in the big city may sound daunting to some. Not going to lie – my summer spent working for a designer in Bryant Park was no joke. Thanks to Culture, I survived the crazy hours and managed the high demands with flying colors. I was allocated five dollars daily for lunch (seriously!), which I put towards their perfectly crafted cappuccinos and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies. This small gem of a coffee shop is decorated with Victorian-style wallpaper and glamorous chandeliers, a charming and necessary escape from the reality of interning in NYC. Maybe it’s because it holds a special place in my heart, but this is still my choice spot for a dose of caffeine whenever I find myself in Midtown Manhattan.
OXFORD EXCHANGE • TAMPA, FL
Seriously loving this coffee shop right now. Well, if you can even call it that. The Oxford Exchange is actually an entire complex composed of a restaurant, bar, bookstore, workspace, and (finally) a coffee shop. The concept for this multi-functional space was inspired during an overseas trip to London. The English design components such as marble, reclaimed wood, and leather touches invite and inspire us to want to engage in more than just a short coffee break. All products from quick bites to books are carefully curated, so be sure to leave some time to browse.