Caféine, 115th Street and Frederick Douglass Boulevard: Quirky and Cozy

Overall: 8/10

Power Outlets: Yes

Wi-Fi: Yes, slow.

Noise Level: Moderate-Loud

Coffee: Average-Good

Bathrooms: Yes, clean

Seating: Not much

Hours: 7am-7pm

Bookstore: No

Bougie: Sometimes.

Across from a Tae Kwon Do studio, South Harlem’s Caféine is a dimly (though usualyy naturally) lit hole in the wall that bakes its own croissants. While the conversations carried out in several languages reflect the blended community of the gentrifying neighborhood, the noise could be distracting if your objective is to read or work. The coffee shop has its fair share of regulars, and the kind staff alone is reason enough to return. However, the mix of show tunes and Elton John may make you subsequently question that choice…

If you’re looking for a place to spread out, this is not for you. The countertops are narrow along the south facing wall, but there’s a section of counter space with three bar stools coveted and prowled by the laptop crowd. The owner is often present and pleasant, and the atmosphere is welcoming for families and loners alike.


Screengrab: Google Maps.

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