In the past 2 years, I have started drinking coffee regularly. It all started on my cross-country road trip with my sister to Utah from Florida. When you’re driving for 10-12 hours a day, caffeine is a must! My sister and I would visit Starbucks in whichever city we stayed in overnight and keep on moving. It was like a game– Find the Starbucks in City XYZ. Now, I know a lot of people either really hate or really love Starbucks, but I am somewhat indifferent. I like Starbucks, and I go there, depending on my mood. The one in Salt Lake City on 400 S and 700 E has AMAZINGLY FAST (and free) WIFI, and sometimes I just go for the reliability of knowing I won’t have any issues connecting/staying connected, and for the free, available parking.
The main reasons I go to coffee shops is to drink coffee (and wake up), work on my blog, edit photos, make progress on personal projects and feel social without the effort. Everyone needs some “alone time” every now and then. For some reason, I am so much more productive at my coffee shops than at home. Since moving here, my sister has huge influence on my desire to find unique and cozy coffee shops. She talked about her productive times at coffee shops in Washington in grad school (when she didn’t have many friends in the area), and now in Tallahassee working on her PhD.
Plus, it’s cool to Shop Local First!
So, without further ado, here is my working list of favorite coffee shops in Salt Lake City!
*Disclaimer: I like my coffee sweet, so my favorite drinks tend to be pretty sweet.
1100 East 2011 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84105
Sugarhouse coffee was the first local coffee shop that I visited in SLC with my sister when I first moved out here.
Coffee Selection: They have it all. Coffee of all sorts, hot and iced teas, chai, fresh squeezed juices, smoothies, etc. I personally recommend the Golden Graham Latte. I’ve also had their juices, and they are very good, some even incorporating chia seeds.
Atmosphere: This place has a great open space with lots of tables and chairs. There are also a couple areas with couches/comfy chairs. They are almost always busy and full. One unique feature of this spot is that they have a piano that people will play at any given moment– Definitely adds to the community feel. The one major complaint I have with the layout is the lack of access to outlets in the middle tables. They do have outlets along the wall on the side with all the tall tables/chairs, but the middle tables are better for meeting a friend for coffee due to the lack of outlets.
Wifi: Fast, free and reliable. Password protected and easy to access.
Parking: Mostly free, and somewhat limited, especially on weekdays before 5pm. They share the free back lot with Best Friends Animal Society, and half is reserved for the volunteers. There is parking along the fence, but that is reserved between 8am-5pm for another business nearby… but never seems to be full of cars during that time. On the weekends and weeknights, it’s fair game. The other option is street parking along 1100 East. I’ve had to find another coffee shop due to the lack of parking before.
Price: Average. Their drinks range from $3 to $6 or so, and their food prices are about $4 to about $8.
Food: Their selection of food is better than other shops I’ve been to. It’s more than just bagels and muffins. While they do have pastries, cookies, and brownies, they also have a great selection of sandwiches, soups, and small appetizer plates. I personally order the caprese sandwich. They also have a bomb breakfast burrito pictured below!
179 West 900 South, Salt Lake City Utah
Weekdays: 6:30am – 7:00pm
Weekends: 7:30am – 7:00pm
Coffee Selection: While their selection is not extremely large, they do brew/roast their own coffee, so it’s constantly changing. How cool is that!
From their website:
When it comes to our coffee, we focus heavily on sourcing in season, sustainably farmed, ethically imported green beans. Sounds like a lot to worry about – which is why we take care of that part and let you enjoy the coffee (not that we don’t enjoy it ourselves). Our roasting process is no less precise, and the result is one damn good cup of coffee! Our offerings are constantly changing so check back frequently!
Atmosphere: The coffee room is cozy, and by cozy I do mean smallish and intimate. I guess that’s why it’s called a “room”! It’s only got a few tables with chairs, a couple cozy chairs, and a small bar where you can sit. There’s also an outdoor area right out front. The front of the shop is big open windows, which I liked. Nevertheless, good local environment where the baristas know the customers. I like that.
Wifi: Reliable, free, and fast. It’s also password protected. I didn’t notice any issues with it– average.
Parking: Some free street parking and a free small dirt lot to the side. Not the best situation, but with a shop that small, I doubt it’s an issue for them. The lot is a little hard to get into, I had to drive past it and make a U-Turn because the Trax was in the way.
Price: Average and fair.
Food: Some bagels and pastries, but not much of a selection. I decided to pass when I was there.
975 S West Temple
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
Coffee Selection: Another local roaster. They have a great little selection of their own roasts.
From their website (edited):
We roast, grind, brew and repeat…Our drive to serve the flawless cup of coffee is all consuming and we’ve been known to blur the fine line between aficionados and addicts… We believe that coffee breeds community and coffee houses are the anchors that ground them.
Atmosphere: Their building is sweet! They have a two-story open space layout coffee house. Next door, they even have an event space for rent. I loved the big open windows and their modern look. I did not get a picture upstairs or of the shop itself. I liked how comfortable and clean everything was.
Wifi: Unfortunately, I had issues with the wifi. I hope it was just that one time. It was password protected, but my computer would not stay connected. I need wifi to do most of my blogging, so I didn’t stay as long as I would’ve liked to. When it did work, it was fast and free.
Parking: Street (alley?) parking along the side building. Free, but seemed to fill up fast. I wonder if there is a secret lot anywhere that I’m missing…
Price: Average. About on-par with the other local coffee shops I frequent.
Food: Try the cinnamon toast! The options were limited but they looked really good, and the toast I had was the bomb.com. It reminded me of my dad’s obsession with cinnamon toast when I was a kid.
320 E. 400 S.
Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Monday to Saturday: 7:00am-10:00pm
Coffee Selection: This coffee shop has quite a few selections of coffee, teas, and other drinks. They brew their own spicy chai which I like to get. Head to their website for a full selection of coffees that you can buy for your at-home enjoyment!
Atmosphere: The building is a two-story workspace with an outside patio included. There are comfy chairs and some seat downstairs with a majority of the desk-like seats and power upstairs along the windows. I like to go upstairs for the nice view over the city.
Wifi: Their password protected wifi is free and fast. Brighton’s had issues connecting there before, but I have never had an issue connecting. Occasionally, the signal will seem to drop off but it was never more of an inconvenience than that.
Parking: There is a lot across the field of grass near the police station. You can park in the middle rows denoted by the sign in the lot without any fee or time limit. That is the only suggested parking that I know of, but I have always found a spot since many people bike or walk to this shop.
Price: Average. I usually spend between $4-$6 per drink there depending on what I get plus a tip.
Food: They have a rotating daily menu as well as a permanent menu. I have tried the pasta primavera (it was okay), salmon tacos (good, but not the best I’ve ever had), and a sandwich (good). The food is good overall, but I don’t think people go to coffee shops for the food as their main goal. Coffee and teas are their forte for sure.
Salt Lake City people– Did I miss your favorite coffee shops? Which ones do you think have the best vibe?