Sustainable City Guide: Austin Coffee Shops
Every month, as part of our Sustainability City Guide to Austin, we’ll be featuring some of our favorite sustainable dining, drinking, and shopping options around town.
It’s safe to say that the craft coffee movement is alive and well in Austin. From perfectly made lattes to extra-strength espresso to innovative coffee cocktails, you can find pretty much any caffeinated concoction you’re craving in our fair city. And while there are seemingly countless trendy places to get your coffee fix, supporting local, fair-trade businesses is totally our jam. Here are five coffee shops to frequent if you want to consciously explore Austin’s java scene.
Best Hometown Hero: Cuvee Coffee. Cuvee has been roasting gourmet coffee before gourmet coffee was cool. Easily one of the most recognized and established local coffee roasters in Texas, Cuvee boasts exceptional, ethically sourced coffee. As they state on their website, “Our Direct Trade model means we make sure we work directly with our growing partners and pay fair prices to cultivate sustainability.” Not only that, but their roasts are simply delicious.
Best Campus Treat: Cafe Bon Appetit. Tucked away on the St. Edwards campus, Cafe Bon Appetit is working toward “food service for a sustainable future”. Locally, humanely grown food is what they’re all about, and they also have an array of great coffee drinks, as well.
Best Off-the-Beaten-Path Spot: Summer Moon Coffee Bar. Far away from the flashy coffee pubs downtown and the uber-hip hole-in-the-walls on East Sixth, Summer Moon is a true underrated gem. Utilizing the craft of 19th-century coffee roasters, Summer Moon has been serving wood-roasted, 100 percent organic, fair trade coffee since 2002. Their beans are sustainably sourced from Central and South America, Africa, and Indonesia, and they don’t use gas or electricity during the roasting process. Though there are now multiple locations, the original spot on South First is still the best place to hang out on a lazy Saturday.
Best Local Roaster: Third Coast Coffee. With over 20 years of experience roasting rich, delectable roasts, Third Coast is also one of the most sustainable coffee spots in the city. They source their certified fair trade, organic beans from small farming cooperatives in Central and South America, Asia, Africa, and Indonesia, and they roast everything locally on a small-batch basis. Third Coast is definitely a model in true-blue sustainable practices.
Best Cozy Nook: Monkey Nest Coffee. Locally owned, intimate Monkey Nest Coffee prides itself on being an “environmentally and socially conscious coffee shop”. In addition to their high-quality speciality coffee (don’t leave without trying the Chocolate Chimp, a coconut mocha latte), they also have yummy pizzas, salads, and sandwiches.