As a self-employed business owner, I enjoy having a home-based office, but sometimes I want to work remotely without the overhead cost of a coworking space. In addition, I’ve become increasingly more intentional about spending my money in Black businesses. Therefore, I’ve made it my duty to find Black-owned coffee shops in Philly. This is not an exhaustive list, but these are the places I’ve visited throughout 2019.
Located in Germantown, this café is great for vegan and vegetarian options. Get your serving of soul food without worrying about hurting your health.
Glows: Healthy and homemade drink options; vegan friendly
Grows: It’s not always clear when they’re open or closed.
Another uptown location, this spot was previously known as Little Jimmie’s Café. I’ve gone here for one-on-one business meetings and ordered an egg and cheese on a croissant. It was amazing and fresh!
Glows: Excellent food, efficient service
Grows: Limited seating
Located at 931 Spring Garden St., this is a centralized spot serving more than coffee. Come here for your morning fix or stop by after a long day for happy hour. They also have two shifts of Black chefs who make anything from beignets to fried mac’ n cheese.
Glows: An abundance of options to quench your thirst including non-alcoholic CBD drinks
Grows: Service can be hit or miss; kitchen closes by 8
I consider this the hub for Black professionals of all ages. You’re bound to bump into someone you know or someone you need to know. It’s a great place for networking with ceiling to floor windows and amazing lighting. This is also the place to buy just about any book from past and current Black authors! Definitely worth the ride to Uptown.
Glows: Strong coffee, poppin’ book options, convenient hours
Grows: Limited food options, often crowded
This black woman-owned space is what I would consider a historic gem. It’s a comic book coffeehouse closer to the Kensington section of the city; definitely a haven for all the self-identified “Black nerds.”
Glows: Spacious venue, with reading circle vibes
Grows: Limited and worn seating
My favorite part of this café is that they have several locations most of which are downtown or in South Philly. By far, I think they have the most affordable food options and a large variety of items from which to choose.
Glows: Great food and affordable prices
Grows: Parking at all locations is difficult
Located in Kensington, I deem this the most sustainable and radical spot of all the coffee shops on the list. Both the name of the place and food items carry historical significance. My favorite drink here is the iced matcha which is made with a green tea powder.
Glows: Sustainable practices and great lighting
Grows: Scheduled children’s events disrupt seating
This Brewerytown gem has the best sandwiches and smoothies hands down. I particularly am in love with the black bean sandwich on multigrain bread. It’s full of flavor and healthy ingredients!
Glows: Private conference room, amazing food, plenty of seating
Grows: Often closes early, posted prices aren’t updated.
If you know of more black-owned Philly coffee spots, please share below!