Love coffee? If you run on coffee (like I do) to get through the day, you’ll need to stop by these independent coffee shops located in Chicago’s Northwest suburbs. Each coffee shop offers a different vibe and is well worth a visit. Keep checking back as I include more coffee shops.
Don’t miss out: Any of their locally roasted coffees, but my fav is their lavendar latte.
Atmosphere: A great spot to meet up with friends or get some work done as they have plenty of plugs and seating everywhere.
Kids will love: Hanging out and having a smoothie or milkshake.
Parking: Strip mall marking
While you’re here: Not only do they offer coffee, but they have a pretty extensive menu with sandwiches and even burgers. Check out their calendar for fun events like book signings and open mic night.
Don’t miss out: Brown sugar oat latte is so good! You can get it hot or cold.
Atmosphere: This coffee shop has a super cool vibe with exposed brick, high ceilings, and plenty of space to hang out or work.
Kids will love: Come early enough and kids can watch the bakers making the donuts through the glass window.
Parking: Plenty of parking in the lot (located behind the building)
While you’re here: Come for the coffee, stay for the donuts!
Another plus: They now have a couple new locations – Des Plaines and one at Gail Borden Library. You can also reserve your donuts ahead of time online.
Don’t miss: Their sweet honey bee latte is really popular. Don’t forget to try any of their seasonal drinks. My salted caramel pumpkin spice latte is what fall is made of. Be proud that the coffee you’re sipping is ethically sourced.
Atmosphere: When you walk in, the smell of coffee is everything. This Crystal Lake hot spot roasts their own coffee. They have high seats by the window or couches to catch up with friends. There is a good number of tables available. The Cary location is smaller but still modern with clean lines with little nooks to hang out and chat.
Kids will love: Care for a game? Challenge your little (or big) one to a game or two from the selection provided. Plus, if you’re lucky enough to catch them roasting coffee, it would be a great learning experience. Start ’em young!
Parking:The Crystal Lake location is in a small strip mall. Parking is usually easy to come by even if you have to wait a few minutes. The Cary location is located by the Metra station and you can easily find street parking.
Another plus: Can’t stop in? Grab a coffee to go through their drive through (Crystal Lake)
Don’t miss: Any of their signature lattes. I love their caramel brulee latte or the lavender latte. If you bring the kiddos, you will want to get the hot chocolates. Add any of their homemade syrups for flavor. Plus, they get their coffee from Conscious Cup so you know it’ll be good!
Atmosphere: I adore the rustic vibe with exposed ceiling and brick wall.
While you’re here: Ethereal offers a variety of small plates and desserts.They are the ones that got me hooked on avocado toast. SO good! Everyone who has mentioned Ethereal Confections is spot on! Chocolates, cocktails, coffee are amazing there! another vote for ethereal! very cozy and intimate, they have a great menu with small plates and desserts, they have coffee drinks and alcoholic drinks as well!
Another Plus: They have kombucha on tap. Post-Covid I hope they will open up their speak easy Emerson & Oliver.
RELATED: Read more about Ethereal here.
Handsome Bakery, Schaumburg
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Don’t miss: If there’s one thing we can’t miss here, it’s there cloud latte, a latte topped with a generous helping of cotton candy.
Atmosphere: Really adorable café with one side exposed brick, cool seats with plenty of seating.
Kids will love: Eating your cotton candy from your cloud latte!
While you’re here: Grab any of their bakery items or bonsoo, their version of shaved ice topped with all these yummy items.
Aroma Coffee and Wine, Crystal Lake
Don’t miss out: Try their signature latte, an Aroma latte with honey and house made aroma drizzle. They caramel latte is yummy as well.
Atmosphere: What a cool vibe! The newest coffee shop in downtown Crystal Lake is nicely decorated, cozy, and spacious.
Kids will love: Care for a game? Challenge your little (or big) one to a game or two from the selection provided.
Another plus: Coffee and wine? Count me in! After (what time), they start offering wine. They also serve breakfast and lunch. Looks really good too.
Parking: Park at any of the street parking located downtown. Those in front of the shop has a 2 hour limit. Look for the other parking lots around downtown.
Rusty Malts, Ringwood
Don’t miss out: Try their signature latte, Rusty Malts Latte.
Atmosphere: This ice cream/coffee shop is so adorable. With plenty of seating indoors, an upstairs, as well as outdoor seating, you’ll definitely find a spot to enjoy your ice cream.
Kids will love: Umm, kids will no doubt make themselves at home here. They have Cedar Crest Ice Cream in so many delicious flavors as well as malts that are out of this world.
Another plus: Like I said, you can’t go wrong with ice cream. There’s also a Nitro Tea option if you’d like. They have a drive thru, if you’d rather grab and go!
Parking: Park at the lot shared with Rusty Nail.