Whether you’re your own boss who can work where you want, you like to meet people over a small two-top with your hands around large mugs or you’re plainly addicted to caffeine, coffee shops call to many of us.
Last year, we lost two great destinations in Crooked Tree and Mudsmith. But we still need coffee and we can’t keep lamenting on what’s lost, so we’ll instead focus on our favorites. And since we’re reminded even our favorites don’t always stay long, we’ll say it again: Keep visiting the places you love.
Here are our top go-tos for coffee in Dallas, particularly considering coffee quality (simple drip, black), comfort, aesthetics and, of course, Wi-Fi strength.
This Jefferson Boulevard spot offers coffee that’s not cheap but offers a place to have toast with goat cheese or a turkey and brie sandwich while we sip our coffee among local art. We love that the Oak Cliff location is open until 7 or 9 p.m., depending on the night. The East Dallas location also means you get biscuit sandwiches — a total plus if you’re on that side of town.
313 W. Jefferson Blvd. (North Oak Cliff), 1155 Peavy Road (East Dallas)
OK, so this one we can’t praise for Wi-Fi, and I don’t believe it’s changed the we-don’t-do-paper thing, so you can’t waltz in empty-handed expected to stroll out with a coffee to go. As long as you’re aware of that, you will enjoy the vibe here while you drink the wonderful Oak Cliff Coffee Roasters’ blends.
UPDATE: A kind reader has informed us you can get coffee to-go with $2 refundable deposit on the mason jar they put your coffee in.
819 W. Davis St. (North Oak Cliff)
You know how you can sip around and taste wine, and if you’re with a friend who’s like either Frasier or Niles, you can delve into what that experience is like for the palate? You can do that here. You can also just drink coffee like a normal human, too, I guess. Michael Wyatt is passionate about this coffee, which you can get by the cup in one size and wait for it to brew in its pour-over method. The back room provides a good space for a gathering, while the front offers plenty of space to sit and sip for a while.
1810 S. Akard St. (the Cedars)
Google insists this is a “cocktail bar.” Yes, it serves booze (not the only one on this list to do so), but we see it more as a place to get coffee, day or night. It’s a perfect meeting space on Lower Greenville, and if you live in the neighborhood, you’ll surely see your neighbors there.
2900 Greenville Ave. (Lower Greenville)
Damn, this coffee is just good. Whichever location you find yourself, you’re fortunate to get some. The West Dallas location is lovely, though, and we’ll happily plan any quick business meeting there, where a beautiful wood design is on the patio and we frequently hear the beautiful work of Fela Kuti over the speakers.
1900 N. Henderson Ave. (Knox-Henderson); 1878 Sylvan Ave., Suite E150 (West Dallas); 9730 N. Central Expressway (Northeast Dallas)
This coffee shop has easy access to the lovely Santa Fe Trail (the bike route is on Main Street; you’ll see the sharrows). I visit for the quirky layout, the inexpensive coffee and that salty “blinker” breakfast sandwich that calls to my stomach in the morning. Plus, it’s on the more pleasant side of Deep Ellum. (Holler at me, if you really need to know more on that — everyone knows I’ll jump on a soap box about this topic.)
103 Murray St. (Deep Ellum)
One time after a Park Board meeting, my colleague Becky Rader invited me to join her at Noble Coyote, and I fell instantly in love with the South Dallas spot. Just a skip from Fair Park, it creates some wonderfully balanced blends (that, I had already known), but the tiny space is one you’ll love. When it’s raining, you can watch the drizzle cascade from the trees on the sidewalk and feel you’re in the best possible urban environment. I can’t possibly love it more than I do.
819 Exposition Ave. (South Dallas)
When I was a news reporter, a number of sources would request to meet here for interviews. I’m thankful for that because this spot in The Joule became a favorite. Not only does it serve Counter Culture Coffee (from North Carolina, but still good, I promise), but there’s fabulous people-watching. Plus, the lotion in the bathroom smells incredible — I know, that may be a step too far, but I’m not wrong about this.
1511 Commerce St. (downtown)
From the people to the brews to the music, this place is a fine East Dallas staple. The location on East Northwest Highway offers plenty of space to lounge awhile. Get there early enough to get a scone (that’s just sweet enough and never dry) or a breakfast sandwich. Our only wish? That they’d change the drive-thru system on East Mockingbird Lane back to the way it was; this new setup is a bummer, guys.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to the Observer's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Dallas's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
10105 E. Northwest Highway (Lake Highlands); 4216 Abrams Road (Hillside); the location at 5930 Royal Lane is currently closed because of last year’s tornado
So it looks like North Oak Cliff has plenty of coffee options, right? But we can’t 86 one just because of that, and Wild Detectives absolutely belongs on this list. Heck, it has an “initiatives” section on its site. It also has coffee from the great Oak Cliff Coffee Roasters, a fine wine list and a superb selection of books. Plus, the space is welcoming to groups of so many kinds, and we love that.
314 W. Eighth St. (Bishop Arts District)
Feel free to @me because I left some off the list. Those were intentional because awkward seating or unfriendly service didn’t make us want to return or throw their name on a “we-love-these-places” list. If there’s a hole-in-the-wall spot you think we should know about, please do let us know.