What are the best coffee shops in Bloomington, IN?

What are the best coffee shops in Bloomington, IN?

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  1. There have been some changes since the answer below was submitted. Soma and Pourhouse are still open, and they are worth a visit. Both Bakehouses have closed. I’ll go by the directive “coffee shop,” not “cafe,” ie. the main draw is the coffee (and wifi for studying, working and hanging out).
    In the new Graduate Hotel on Kirkwood, Poindexter Cafe has OK coffee and expensive food. Further up Kirkwood towards the Courthouse Square, longtime chocolatier BluBoy still serves splendid espresso drinks alongside its exquisite chocolate. On the Square, Inkwell Cafe has decent espresso and drip coffee, and pricey food.
    There are two newer coffee roasters/coffee shops that are knockouts for quality and are in a tie for top-tier, in my estimation. Hopscotch has two locations—a walkup stand beside their roastery at Madison and 7th and a sit-down place (with beer!) at Dodds Street on the B-Line Trail (rail-to-trail walking park). It has a sister store, Rainbow Bakery, at Fourth and Rogers Streets, that serves only drip Hopscotch coffee along with their vegan doughnuts and quirky pastries.
    The youngster of the lot is Needmore Coffee, on North Pete Ellis Drive at East Longview Ave. This is on the East side of town, near Target and College Mall, so cap your heavy shopping day with Needmore’s GLORIOUS small-batch-roasted coffees. They also make their own ginger ale and have rootsy, spicy latte flavors that you won’t find at Starbucks. This woman-owned enterprise has forged relationships with organic fair-trade coffee farmers in Central America, and has small-plate food that won’t interfere with your enjoyment of the java. Plus, the wifi is super-fast.

  2. Are you looking for good coffee and good food, or a place that serves coffee and has wireless where you can hangout?
    For decent coffee and hanging out you should go to Soma at least once if you haven’t already. They make a variety of beverages and it is one of those quintessential eclectic college town cafes. The Pourhouse is right around the corner from Soma, they are also potentially a place to chill. Bakehouse downtown and Bakehouse on the east side have ok coffee and full menus, personally I don’t find either to be that great. You can hang out there though, I think they have wireless.
    Feast makes great coffee and great food, if you’re looking for both I recommend them. It is a bit more expensive than the other places I listed, but it is also one of the better restaurants in town. The Runcible Spoon also has a full menu and coffee bar. They are a little less expensive and service can be really slow even on week days, but this is another place you should go at least once in Bloomington. Order the eggs benedict.
    The City Bakery is a hole in the wall place by the second Soma location. The place is tiny, often packed with music students, can be slow and have weird hours. If you go in the morning they have around 5-6 kinds of croissants. You want these croissants, if you’re into pastries. They are the best in town (I think) and frequently sell out before noon. It is a hard place to hang out at, but darting in for a croissant and coffee is definitely a good idea.
    If you want good coffee for at home, try Brown County Coffee. They sell it at Blooming Foods and at the farmers’ market.


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