Contrary to what one might expect, coffee shops are a bit of a rarity in Paris. That is to say, there is coffee served in most boulangeries and restaurants, but you have to expect to be served a shot of espresso - or at best, a teacup-sized café crème. While a strong espresso can be great, nothing hits the spot like a nice big latte - from macchiatos, to mochas, to vanilla lattes, to chais. It takes some investigating to find the "real" coffee shops here, but in this article I'll offer my essential coffee guide to Paris.

Holiday Café with Bob

If the name doesn’t intrigue you already, this is the place I am most excited to go back to. The 16th arrondissement, where this lovely spot is located, isn’t one of the neighborhoods you hear a lot about - none of the major tourist attractions are here, but this is part of what’s so great about the 16th. They have some hidden gems such as this café, plus it’s home to the Passy neighborhood - a personal favorite shopping area.

I would consider The Holiday Café with Bob to be super “English-friendly,” and American inspired — with pancakes, donuts, bagel sandwiches, granola and vegetable bowls, to name a few.

They offer vegan options as well, so there’s something for everyone. But the best part is their selection of beverages. Drip coffee (which is impossible to find on most menus...), espresso, americanos, lattes, chai, matcha, fresh juices, and avocado milkshakes are a handful of their drinks, not to mention that many are available iced!

Allison Leacu

The place is modest, reminding one of typical cafe diners, at a smaller scale. It’s comforting to walk into a place that truly reminds you of the US. They have a lovely outdoor seating space, making it the perfect escape for brunch on a spring day, or for a coffee on-the-go.

Allison Leacu

Good News Coffee Shop

Next up is Good News Coffee shop. If you’re a Tatte fan, this place is right up your alley. Think sleek, white, clean, yet cozy decor, and a menu that one cannot simply miss. Located in the 15th arrondissement, this place isn’t so far from the Eiffel tower, just about a mile walk.

This Australian owned shop has got every kind of coffee you could want - espresso, cortado, cappuccino, flat white, and every kind of latte you could want: chai, matcha, golden, and espresso. Did I mention they have cold brew too? Their selection of fresh baked goods is also impeccable. It changes regularly, but they offer scones, tartines, and a selection of pastries of the week! They also have sandwiches, avocado toast, bowls, hash browns, and more.

I recommend getting the formule for breakfast, which includes a scone or tartine, hot drink, and juice for just 9€. Feel free to sit here and study, or grab your coffee to-go before your next adventure - whether that be your work day, or a picnic at the Parc du Champ de Mars.

Nuage Café

Perfect for long study days, Nuage Café is quite unique from typical cafes in the US. Rather than paying for the drinks and goodies you order, you pay a fixed rate per hour you spend in the cafe. Right near the Pantheon and various universities of the Latin quarter, you will find this beautiful place tucked away - a peaceful haven from urban life.

The Nuage Café boasts a space for teleworking, meeting, studying, reading, and just enjoying a moment of relaxation - in fact, it’s divided up over two levels to serve all of these purposes.

They take care of you, offering unlimited handcrafted beverages and snacks for the duration of your visit. They’re chai is exceptional, and that’s coming from someone who searches high and low for the perfect spiced latte around the city.

Trust me, if you’d be paying 5€ for your coffee to-go fix elsewhere, this place is well worth a visit. Go explore the Panthéon or Notre Dame Cathedral on Île de la Cité while you're at it!

Columbus Café Company

Lastly, there is Columbus Café Company. Think the reliable and comforting nature of Starbucks and Dunkin', where you can have a set order, or try a variety of options each visit, and always know what you're getting will satisfy your coffee craving - that’s Columbus.

This France-based coffee co. has a handful of locations in Paris, and all over the country. This is like France’s casual fast-service coffee chain, but of high quality. They’ve got all the sizes you could want (finally some big coffees for those tough mornings!) and, you can even get flavors in your espresso and coffee drinks (about the same lineup of coffee drinks as the previous coffee shops). Salted Caramel latte? Coming right up. 

Allison Leacu

They also serve iced teas, juices, smoothies, and shakes. Their food selection includes muffins, cakes, pancakes, cookies, sandwiches, bagels, and bowls.. need you want more?

On top of all this, they have their own merchandise and coffee goods - I purchased their coffee capsules for the espresso machine at my office, and it’s the most exciting work break. Columbus is sure to satisfy your coffee fix, and there is bound to be one near you when you visit France!

Whether you’re a new resident of the city (if this is you, check out this article Cooking for Comfort - How to Feel at Home, Away From Home), or just on vacation, you’re probably going to find yourself longing for that perfect cup of joe that surpasses the typical miniature espresso shot. Give one of these shops a visit, and you’ll feel right at home.