Our Five Faves

Best Coffee Shop

Posted October 10, 2011
Updated October 12, 2011

First of all, a sincere thanks to all who have participated in the conversations regarding our "five faves."

It's terribly difficult selecting only five for each category as there are so many wonderful establishments in the area.

As we saw last week with BBQ, you all are extremely passionate about supporting your favorites and we are thrilled to be a part of that conversation.  All of your comments are read and much appreciated.

Coffee shops are no different.  For many people they serve as an office, a home away from home or a place to meet new friends.  In no particular order, here are our five favorites:

Joe Van Gogh (Durham): Amazingly friendly baristas and locally-roasted fair trade beans make JVG in Durham a must-visit.

Morning Times (Raleigh):  Consistency at its absolute finest. Be prepared to be greeted with a smile, usually by local artist and long-time manager Casey Porn.  The coffee drinks are always delicious and their breakfast is some of the best made-to-order stuff we've had from a coffee shop.

Beyu Cafe (Durham): Owner DJ Bolden, a Duke graduate, wanted to create a coffee shop where you could "be yourself."  Stop in a give the "heart & soul" blend a try.  

Benelux Cafe (Raleigh): Benelux, a combination of the words Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg, was opened earlier this year in City Market by Steve Halaszi and his wife, Keta.  The tandem successfully created a shop with a fun, European flair located a bit off the beaten path.  Steve and Keta are some of the nicest people we've met in the business and there is no doubt you will feel right at home at Benelux Cafe.

3 Cups (Chapel Hill): Also serving fine wine and tea, 3 cups offers a coffee experience second to none in Chapel Hill with one of the best espressos around.

 Alright coffee lovers, what'd we miss?



Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • fauxpaws2000 Oct 16, 2011

    This discussion is like arguing over BBQ. Make your choice but defend you opinions.

    Living in northern Durham, I'm pleased to see Joe Van Gogh get the attention it deserves. The baristas are friendly. Even the rare one who isn't can PULL A GREAT SHOT, which is 90% of the reason I love this place.

    Their beans-to-go are always interesting and fresh. Food is so-so.

    So, great coffees, creative espresso drinks, low key atmosphere and reasonable prices...VERY Durham.

    Faux Paws

    PS: Scratch, the new bakery downtown serves an amazing cortado, best I've had north of San Juan, PR.

  • eduncan Oct 14, 2011

    Driade in Chapel Hill is my favorite but generally short on staff. Nice to hear about Jubala.

  • snakegetters Oct 13, 2011

    @coffeechick: I definitely second Helios in downtown Raleigh. How good the shots are depend on who's behind the counter. Some (possibly even most) of the baristas are awesome and can consistently tamp and pull a perfect shot with beautiful "tiger" crema. I've occasionally gotten a pretty underextracted or overextracted shot though. They will always re-do if asked, and it's a pretty rare occurrence, so I'm a happy Helios customer when I'm down in that area.

  • snakegetters Oct 13, 2011

    Gerbil, I am a herpetologist with a specialty in venomous reptile veterinary care and safe/humane restraint. Google my user name if you're curious. I seriously doubt that a coffee shop would be interested in serving snake venom lattes, so I don't work there. LOL

    The coffee and the collective coffee-geek knowledge at Jubala is really **just that good.** Their Facebook page does direct their fans to this article, and obviously a number of us are piling in to say how awesome the place is. Because it is. They certainly don't need to have employees shill for them, not when they have so many customers who are seriously impressed with the place and happy to spread the word.

  • snakegetters Oct 13, 2011

    Jubala Village Coffee on Falls of Neuse in North Raleigh consistently demonstrates the most meticulous brewing methods, the most skilled baristas who routinely do beautiful latte art and perfectly pulled shots with magnificent crema, and very thoughtful sourcing of freshly roasted varietals from CounterCulture. 3 Cups is very good, but it can not compete with the collective expertise and the range of precision brewing methods used on every single cup at Jubala. Color me deeply impressed, and I am a roast-my-own extreme coffee snob.

  • elyhim2 Oct 12, 2011

    Casey's an artist as well, I have a few of her pieces over my desk atm.

  • raleighdeac Oct 12, 2011

    Gerbil - I'm pretty sure you're wrong here....Jubala just has a strong customer base in N.Raleigh....also it did ask to share your thoughts on the picks in the comments section which people are doing.

    On another note, how about those Deacs!

  • Gerbil Herder Oct 12, 2011

    Besides, these are their five faves...must've missed that in the headline.

  • Gerbil Herder Oct 12, 2011

    Looks like we've got all the Jubala Village employees on here plugging their store.

  • jpdyson Oct 12, 2011

    ...and Jubala Village Coffee smashes all five. No contest.