Chicago L Coffee Map (Beta)

Gizmodo recently posted a pretty amazing NYC subway map that highlights all of the city’s coffee shops. Instantly, Twitterers all over Chicago cried out in unison, “Chicago needs one of these!”

A Table in the Corner of the Cafe to the rescue!

Now, bear in mind this is just a beta version of the Chicago El Coffee Map I want to create and in no way a final product. If you have any suggestions or notice any shops that are missing, please let me know in the comment section below!

(EDITOR’S NOTE (4/18/2014): There is an updated version of the Chicago L Coffee Map! Check it out here!)


  • me3dia

    Beans and Bagels at both Montrose and Rockwell on the Brownline!

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      thanks for the tip!

    • Laura

      Oh gosh….yes BOTH beans and bagel!!

  • Dave

    Perfect Cup at Damen Brown would be a good one to add

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Duh-doy! How could I forget Perfect Cup?? Thanks for the tip!

    • Geenius_at_Wrok

      Also Caffe Dolce at the same stop.

  • BenGa

    Cafe Rom at Quincy/Wells in the loop

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Is that a good shop? I know they have a few locations downtown but I still haven’t been there.

      • BenGa

        They take a lot of care in the preparation. The loop location is very busy and they manage to serve a lot of customers and still keep the quality up. Umbria beans – The shoreham location is a bit quieter

  • Jake

    Kitchen Sink off the Berwyn Red Line stop

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Great, thank you!

  • Andy C.

    The Morgan Green/Pink Line stop doesn’t seem to exist on this map? Either that, or Ashland doesn’t exist.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      You’re totally right – it’s not completely accurate. That’s something I definitely need to take care of going forward with it.

  • Laura

    Yes, Kitchen Sink at Berwyn….or even Kopi…one of the oldest remaining coffee houses in the city! Been around since 1991 (or so), also Berwyn stop.

  • WoodlawnWonder

    @robustcoffee on 63rd.

  • Michael

    glad you included the south and west sides! (unlike the chicago L bar map.)

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Thank you for noticing that. I was very disappointed in that map for that reason; what, South- and West-siders don’t enjoy good beer? Even the littlest things (like that) drive the wedge between Chicagoans deeper and deeper and divides us even further. It basically translates to “The South Side and the West Side are insignificant and shouldn’t be included” or “WE don’t want to be associated with THEM.”

      Did I make that too political…?

      • Michael

        No, I don’t think so at all. Beyond your points, it reinforces the idea that the south side is a barren wasteland. There’s so much to explore and people never know about anything because very little coverage is given to the area, outside of empty and useless crime statistics. We have nightlife out south! We have restaurants out south! We have museums and theaters out south!

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    The Coffee Alley – Polk, Pink line

  • Amanda

    Coffee Chicago and Kitchen Sink off the Berwyn stop

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Boy, people really like Kitchen Sink! I’ve heard a few people recommend that one now – I’ll have to check them out!

  • Heather

    Towbar at Jarvis Red Line.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      I was very torn about Towbar. I live across the street from them and I know the owners and I really hope they succeed – I wanted to include them, but they’re not necessarily a “coffee shop” as much as they are a restaurant. But, I’ll add them so Jarvis has something.

  • Edge of the 14th Ward

    Slim pickings on the south side. I guess we prefer our Dunkin’ Donuts – we’ve got about a billion of ’em. I will say that Jackalope is a true diamond in the rough ’round these parts, especially if you like tea.

  • David

    Fabcakes at the Chicago Brown line stop

  • Anonymous

    La Catrina in Pilsen ( Now we need an entrepreneur to start a Chicago Coffee House Tour!

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Jenn Chen of Caffentures used to host a ____ Line “coffee crawl.” $30 or whatever it was would buy a tour of three or four participating cafes along a certain CTA line. It was a pretty cool idea – not sure if she’s still running it or not

  • A Table in the Corner of the C
  • Alessandro

    Bourgeois Pig at Fullerton stop

  • Mark

    Lovely, off the Blue Line at Division

  • Kris Wilhelmsen

    There is Beavers Donuts off the Clinton Green/Pink Line ( as well as Espression Lavazza both in the French Market.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      I’m not sure about what to do with Beavers Donuts, since it’s a coffee truck and is in a different spot every day. Do they have a flagship store at Clinton?

      • Kris Wilhelmsen

        Beavers Donuts has a stand alone Store within The French Market. (131 N Clinton) They also have the truck that travels different places as well. :) Hope that helps

  • mlynnsutter

    Fabcakes at Chicago brown line and also kitchen sink and coffee Chicago at Berwyn redline.

  • ard

    First Slice Pie Cafes at Montrose and Francisco stops on the Brown Line

  • Marsharona

    Perfect Cup at the Damen Brown Line!

  • tresoriginale

    Pick me up cafe- Belmont Corona Cafe- Sheridan. Jumping Bean- Montrose ave brown line

  • tresoriginale

    I’ve never been to these but Janik’s Cafe and Milk and Honey are also off Division blue, I don’t know if Letzavia’s natural bakery counts but they are a similar set up. Filter Coffee is the best- Damen or Division blue. Aje’s cafe brown wellington

  • Drew Peterson

    Cafe Mustache – blue line california

  • Chris Jansen

    Beans and Bagels for Rockwell Brown and Perfect Cup for Damen Brown

    • Tony Black

      Beans and Bagels at Montrose on Brown line too…

  • Bianca Smith

    Cafecitó off of the Harrison Red Line stop

  • Josh

    Towbar @ Jarvis on the Red Line serves Big Shoulders coffee

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Are you guys doing a slow bar yet, or still batch brewing? Charmers had a lot of flaws for a coffee shop and among the biggest was the absence of a slow pour bar.

  • Naomi Ezquivel

    Kedzie pink line: Cafe La Catedral
    Ashland pink line: Nohea Cafe
    Halsted green line: Kusanya Cafe


  • Linz and Vail

    Thanks a bundle for finding us!

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Of course! Thanks for providing north Evanston with quality coffee!

      • Linz and Vail

        We are happy to provide all of your readers with a 10% discount, just for mentioning your name! Thanks again!

        • A Table in the Corner of the C

          WOW! You hear that, Internet – head up to Linz and Vail!!

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    Is that more of a “coffee shop” than Blind Faith?

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    A LOT of people requested Kitchen Sink – must be pretty good huh?

  • Cait

    Brown Line: Damen- The Perfect Cup; Southport- Safari Cup; Francisco- First Slice

  • cuisinartkings

    Star Lounge/ Dark Matter Coffee on Chicago! Definitely needs to be on there.

  • Coffee Fixer

    JJ Java is pulling shots with out a pump on their machine. Motor was seized and they were too cheap to replace it.

  • Clara

    Kafein off the Purple Line Davis stop!

  • Seth J. A. Alexander

    Nitecap, off of the 18th St. Pink Line

  • Noah

    Everybody’s Coffee off of the Wilson Redline

  • berkeleygirl

    Montrose & Rockwell: Beans & Bagels (where you find not only fabulous coffee, but the best pastries in the US)

  • coffee!

    Bow Truss at Merchandise Mart Brown Line.

  • Adam

    Berwyn Red: Kitchen Sink Cafe.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      thanks a lot!

  • Ninja Tengu

    Nite Cap Coffee Bar off 18th street pink line. Not even a block away from the stop and much closer than those listed!

    • A Table in the Corner of the C


  • Jackalope Coffee

    Thank you for including us on this awesome map!

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Absolutely! You guys are killing it in Bridgeport! I love seeing good coffee on numbered streets!

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    Yeah a few of the lines are in weird shapes. This was just a beta version so I didn’t take the time to make sure each one looked the way they actually look. I should have. Just wait for the final version, which will be released in a couple weeks – it’s MUCH improved.

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    thank you!

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    great suggestion!

  • A Table in the Corner of the C

    thank you much!

  • Magdalena

    Orange Line:
    Midway–La Petit Pastry
    Pulaski–Pastel! Cakes and More
    Kedzie–Cafe El Mason
    Western–Dunkin’ Donuts (if you have to put something)
    35th and Archer–Jazzy Bean Coffee
    Ashland–Bridgeport Bakery

    In the future, please don’t forsake the south/southwest sides because they’re a more challenging google search.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Great suggestions – I already have all of them on my latest version (which will be released in a couple weeks!). And don’t forget about Jackalope and Bridgeport Coffee off Halsted!

  • Danhundredgrand

    Towbar is about 30 steps away from the Jarvis red line stop. Great coffee shop during the day with the most amazing almond croissants!

    • Susan Szews

      I was going to suggest Towbar as well. Good coffee and very friendly service.

  • coffeeshopjunkie

    Beans and Bagels at the Montrose Stop and Rockwell Stop on the Brown Line. Plus The Perfect Cup at the Damen Brown line stop.

  • AlexanderCrane

    Now this is just a matter of preference but it is spelled out as ‘L’ instead of ‘El’.

  • Ethan

    Cafe Descartes is near Loyola, and Coffee Chicago is near Berwyn, both Red Line stops!


    Beans and Bagels! 2 Locations: Montrose (Brown Line) and Rockwell (Brown Line)

  • Rob

    Cookies and Carnitas new Coffee Shop will be opening off Thorndale Red line on March 27, Zanzibar is also off Bryn Mawr, though Coffee Studio is a ton better – albeit much farther, Growling Rabbit is right off Morse.

  • jakerblue

    Not sure if it’s independent enough for this map but the Lavazza on Jackson between the lasalle/van buren and library stops

  • Rob

    Also The Berwyn Red line has – as others have suggested, Kitchen Sink Cafe, Coffee Chicago, and if you extend into Andersonville, Kopi Cafe as well.

  • Jeffrey Harrington

    Love this. My addition:

    Chicago Brown Line Stop – Fabcakes

    They serve Ipsento coffee and create their own syrups in house. Good teas too!

  • dothedan

    I think you missed a Starbucks at every stop

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      lulz. I actually considered putting chains on the map on version 2 but decided against it because it was cluttering it too much. Surprisingly, though, there are far more Dunkin Donuts than Starbucks. There is at least one Dunkin Donuts within walking distance of just about every single stop.

  • Jessica

    Emerald city coffee is right under the sheridan red line stop

  • nuttyknot

    I don’t think there is “Bridgeport Coffee” near Garfield – Red Line

    Can I suggest that you create a list of link corresponding to each coffee shop in the map. So it’s easier to find direction.

    • A Table in the Corner of the C

      Bridgeport Coffee is closest to Sox/35th – it’s at 32 and Morgan.

      As far as the list suggestion – do you mean, like, a list of all the businesses and their addresses off to the side of the map? That’s a really great idea. It will help to clarify exactly which direction to walk once you get off the L.

      Thanks for the tip!

      • nuttyknot

        I have one more question what’s the criteria about how close the coffee shop is to the L station? Like this is around the corner, 10 minutes walk or what?

        • A Table in the Corner of the C

          That’s another thing I’m wrestling with. I originally wanted it to be “Best shop at each stop,” but then some of the best shops in the city wouldn’t be listed, so I opted for “best shopS at each stop.”

          So, for example, Chicago Blue Line has Big Shoulders and Star Lounge: Big Shoulders is right at that stop, while Star Lounge requires a transfer to the 66 bus, or it’s a long, long walk – but Star Lounge, while not close to any other stop, is one of the 5 best shops in the whole city so it would be a huge injustice not to include it.

          That makes this map pretty subjective, I understand, but it’s hard to make an objective version of this map if you’re trying to highlight the best shops in the city.

          • nuttyknot

            It’d be great if you put estimated travel time from the station. Like 5 mins bus, or 10 min walk or maybe use color-coded name like green if it’s less than 5 minutes walk, yellow if 10 of less, or red if you need to talk a bus.

          • A Table in the Corner of the C

            YES. I’m glad you said so. I was considering putting an asterisk next to each shop that “requires bus transfer”

          • A Table in the Corner of the C

            The only problem with that, though, is the subjectivity of it. I mean, I think a 30 minute walk “requires a bus transfer” but that’s mostly because I’m fat and lazy 😉

    • Julie Brzozkiewicz

      While Bridgeport Coffee’s main location is on the corner of 31st and Morgan, they also have two satellite locations – one at the Roosevelt Collection and one down in Hyde Park. The original is around the corner from where I live, and they’re excellent!

      • cornerofthecafe

        Yep! I also included their location on Roosevelt. Glad to see them expanding their operation – love what they’re doing!

  • Daniel Morrow

    the best coffee shop around the Division Blue stop is Lovely…

  • John Barnicle

    Seconding Kitchen Sink off the Berwyn Red Line

  • eggsofamerica

    Perfect Cup at Damen Brown is great.

  • Josalyn

    Kafein near the Davis purple line stop!

  • Noname

    Ready Coffee in WP is closing. A different shop is opening in its place.
    Also Southport Brown needs Julius Meinl, and Cafe Tula.
    Kozi in Andersonville.
    Saugatuck Coffee in boystown.

  • Jana

    No Cafe Mustache (California Blue)?!

  • Dawnthea Price

    Kitchen Sink (Red-Berwyn)!

  • Ugly Mug Cafe

    Ugly Mug Cafe off of the Chicago Blue line stop?

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  • Allen

    Ugly Mug Cafe off the blue line stop!

  • Matt Maldre

    The green line’s Oak Park Ave stop on your map is missing a coffee shop. Please add Red Hen. It’s a wonderful. 736 Lake St, Oak Park, IL 60301. The locals love it. Great coffee, beautiful park across the street.

    • cornerofthecafe

      Thank you for that tip! I was hoping I could add more shops to the Oak Park area.

  • klevergirl

    Cafe Descartes is hands down the best roast in the city & always was. Only surviving location is on N. Michigan, though.
    I also recommend Gelato Greco @ the Chicago Blueline & Lovely off the Division Blueline.

  • klevergirl

    there’s also zanzibar & lovely,too at the Bryn mawr Redline. and I think Chava and Baker & Nosh are both off the Wilson redline stop

  • Lori Lippitz

    Hoosier Mama Pie Shop (Oakton Street L Stop, Evanston) brews excellent Metropolis coffee.

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  • Tammy Perlmutter

    Add Everybody’s Coffee off the Red Line Wilson stop in Uptown. Thanks for doing this!!!

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  • Stella

    far southside, check out hardboiled coffee and beverly bakery and cafe. i’ve not had the latter yet and the former’s coffee didn’t suit my personal tastes, but nonetheless it’s wonderful that we finally have two spots that roast their own beans. neither is super near public transit, but one could get to both via the metra rock island.

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  • A Table in the Corner of the C