Every mom I know needs her daily cup (or three) of coffee. Juggling the many responsibilities of motherhood is exhausting, and caffeine is a much-needed boost for many. Whether you are a coffee addict like myself, or a low-key mama looking for a relaxing place to grab a nice tea and a pastry, you can find what you need here in the Magic City. We are all familiar with the nation’s popular chain coffee shops, but I wanted to know where I could go to support local business owners.
As it turns out, our amazing city boasts just about as many coffee purveyors as it does creators of craft beer. Read on below to find your new favorite caffeination station!
The Best Local Coffee Shops in Birmingham
Filter Coffee Parlor is a family shop located in Five Points. The owners are the ones behind the counter making your drinks! They are incredibly knowledgeable and helpful. Filter also sells a variety of delicious treats made by local bakers. Bonus: the store has free parking out back and a second floor with extra seating!
The Red Cat Coffeehouse is a Birmingham favorite with two locations: one by Railroad Park and the other at Pepper Place. Both stores feature delicious coffee as well as a large food menu. My children can highly recommend their croissants and homemade pop tarts! Stop in after a stroll at the park or during your trip to Alabama’s best farmer’s market!
June Coffee opened just a few months ago. It’s an offshoot of a roasting company bearing the same name. Located on 25th St. North, the cafe highlights its past life as a woodworking shop by incorporating repurposed materials for many interior elements. I’m hoping to visit this shop myself soon as it is one that was recommended by one of our subscribers! You can also try some of their drinks at their carts permanently stationed at Little Professor shops.
Domestique Coffee has multiple locations across the Birmingham area. Panache is located on 20th Street, Dawn Patrol is in Homewood, and their roaster location is on 6th Ave South. While this business believes in sourcing sustainably-grown coffees and was founded after the owners biked across Haiti filming a documentary, 15% of every Haitian coffee purchase is donated to relief efforts in Haiti. This is another subscriber recommendation!
Frothy Monkey is an all-day cafe and specialty coffee shop on 2nd Ave. Their first location was in Nashville, and they expanded to Birmingham in 2022. Frothy is from 7:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m. —quite literally all day! This spot is great for meeting with friends, remote work, a parent’s night out, or a family meal. Frothy has stellar bread and baked goods from their own bakery! They serve original recipes from breakfast through dinner with a full coffee program, a full bar program, and kids’ menu.
Dryft Coffee is a small batch specialty coffee roaster and a modern mobile coffee bar. It was recommended by one of our readers for their special Indian style coffee! On Wednesdays, they’re at the Birmingham Art Museum, so you can get your caffeine and art fix in one spot.
Homewood / Mountain Brook
Seeds is a West Homewood shop offering coffee and beer options just down the street from Patriot Park. Their business model seeks to give more profit to coffee growers and as such maintains a close relationship with farmers. They are great for families and keep a box of games and children’s toys by the couch. Pro-tip: Bring your kiddos and take them out behind the shop to find a bocce court! You can enjoy a drink while they play.
Daily Edition is also in West Homewood and was recommended by one of our readers. In addition to coffee, they also serve breakfast and an incredible assortment of pastries. While you’re there, check out their print shelves full of publications about fashion, art, travel and wine.
Caveat in downtown Homewood has a nice selection of coffee drinks and bagged beans. Although the shop is small with limited seating and parking, they do have a drive-thru! For extra busy days they even offer online ordering so your drink is ready and paid for by the time you pull up!
Red Mountain Expresso is a drive-thru coffee shop in downtown Homewood and came highly recommended by our readers not only for their coffee, but for their pimento cheese biscuits! Try their Hollywood caramel and hazelnut latte with cinnamon – a local favorite!
O’Henry’s is a Birmingham staple with locations all across the metro area. They offer a wide range of bagged beans and are a great option for anyone who loves a dark roast! Their most loved coffee is the Christmas Blend, which only comes out for a limited time each year. These shops are perfect for an out-of-office work meeting.
Church Street Coffee and Books in Mountain Brook is perhaps most famous for their break-up cookie, but they also serve excellent coffee. Stop by and peruse the carefully curated book selection and try one of their delicious house-made snacks while you’re at it! Bonus: they have a second story which is dedicated to patrons interested in a silent work space!
Santos Coffee is a unique shop with its original location near the Hoover Met and a new store in downtown Birmingham. Santos sources all of its coffee directly from their own family farm in Guatemala. The store also offers a large food menu. Added plus: they have a drive-thru so you can support local business owners without having to remove your kids from their car seats!
Wild Roast Cafe is another recommendation by a subscriber and is located in Bluff Park. With a menu full of various drink and food options, I have put this on my list of places to visit soon.
Baba Java Roaster and Cafe near the Galleria provides its customers unusual drink options with a variety of flavors and coffee blends all roasted by their company. They are incredibly knowledgeable and even offer tutorials and the best gear for making great coffee at home! Their menu also features a good selection of food items all made by local businesses. You can even buy a subscription to get their beans shipped to your door if you prefer to make your own java at home. (They also have Greystone and Montevallo locations, too!)
Travelin’ Tom’s Coffee of Hoover is a mobile coffee company that serves gourmet hot, frozen, and iced beverages. They have a large variety of drinks for coffee lovers, but also for people who don’t like coffee. Drinks like hot chocolate, apple cider, nitro lemonade, as well as hot and iced tea options! They visit a lot of local schools, businesses, festivals, and events around the Greater Birmingham Area.
East 59 Cafe is located in the Lee Branch shopping center on Highway 280 and inside the Hoover library. They serve great coffees as well as amazing food items. I enjoy going in for the relaxed atmosphere and, when I have a few minutes to myself, I love to sit and read while watching the activity around me.
South of Birmingham/280 Corridor
Bullet Coffee is my favorite coffee stop on Hwy 280. I usually get The Vulcan (white chocolate, brown sugar, and cinnamon–YUM!), but I have enjoyed all of the drinks I’ve tried. This is also a favorite stop because it is drive-thru only. You order at one window and drive around the building to pay and receive your coffee at the second window. They also have a few food items on their menu that don’t disappoint.
Cala Coffee was recommended by one of our readers as a great coffee spot in Cahaba Heights. The husband and wife duo behind Cala Coffee began roasting their coffee in 2021, which led to a coffee cart (which you can rent), and eventually a brick-and-mortar location!
North Of Birmingham
Makers is a modern coffee shop serving locally roasted coffee, frappes, and baked goods north of Birmingham in Morris. The best part? They have an indoor play area with tables and chairs – a perfect spot to meet up for coffee and a play date!
Red Bike Coffee is an Irondale-based roastery with a new cafe in Crestwood! Taking over the old Crestwood Coffee location, this cafe hopes to continue the coffee and community-focused legacy of it’s previous owners.
Daysol Coffee Lab is a grab-and-go micro-roastery located in Helena and was named the 2022 Shelby County Small Business of the Year! What makes them unique is that they have an actual tasting bar in their roastery where you can taste the coffees they roast, buy a cup, and know exactly what you’re getting before you buy a bag to take home. It’s as much of a learning experience as it is a coffee shop, and it’s such a great way to support a local business if you prefer making your own coffee at home. Daysol even offers a subscription service on their website where you can have freshly roasted beans delivered to your door, as well as a cold brew coffee trike that you can book for your next event!
The Copper Train was recommended to us by one of our readers as a must-try. It’s a family-owned and operated café that features coffees, soups, salads, sandwiches, pastries, and more. They are located in Alabaster and just celebrated their second birthday in September!
Adventurers Coffee in Calera was also recommended to us by one of our readers. Their roasts include Base Camp (flagship brew), Dungeons and Dark Roast, Faire Maiden (blonde roast), and Bean to the Future (decaf).
St. Clair County
Cafe 242 is also a bit further out (located in Odenville), but was recommended by one of our readers as a great spot for “off menu” customers. They offer coffee, tea, and frozen drinks, and are happy to help you create a new favorite drink. Try a vanilla dirty chai, caramel toffee latte, or frozen marbled white hot chocolate! Cafe 242 also serves pastries and sandwiches, and has free wi-fi.
Nichols Nook is another coffee house recommended by one of our readers. Located in downtown Springville, it’s a bit further from the main area of Birmingham. However, it comes highly recommended! Nichols Nook is not only a coffee house, but also a gift shop and bookstore. Next time you’re in the area, make sure you stop in and check it out!
Where do you go for an energy boost? If you see your local coffee shop is missing from this list, please let us know and we will add it!