Best Coffee in Columbia SC: Top 10 Coffee Shops You Need to Try

If you’re a coffee lover in Columbia, South Carolina, you’re in luck. This bustling city has a thriving coffee scene with a variety of options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a quick pick-me-up or a cozy spot to relax with a book, you’ll find it here. In this article, we’ll explore some of the top coffee shops in Columbia, as well as some of the unique offerings and vibes you can expect to find.

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What goes better with coffee than donuts? Check out my guide to the best donut shops in Columbia to set up the perfect anytime pairing.

What’s the best coffee shop in Columbia?

Drip Coffee stands out as the top coffee shop in Columbia. Nestled in the vibrant Five Points neighborhood, Drip Coffee boasts two locations known for their high-quality, handcrafted beverages. The shop’s ambiance is trendy and welcoming, with specialties like the “Honey Lavender Latte” and in-house roasted beans, such as the “House Blend” and “Ethiopia Yirgacheffe”. 

Furthermore, its diverse offerings cater to various dietary needs, making it a preferred spot for both coffee aficionados and casual drinkers.

One of the great things about Columbia’s coffee scene is the diversity of options. From locally owned coffee shops to national chains, there’s something for everyone. You can explore the different neighborhoods and find your new favorite spot. Some coffee shops even offer unique dietary options, like vegan or gluten-free treats.

If you’re new to the coffee scene or just looking to expand your palate, Columbia has plenty of options for exploring local brews. You can try different roasts and brewing methods to find your perfect cup. And if you’re a foodie, you’ll love the coffee and food pairings some shops offer. So grab a cup of joe and let’s dive in.

Key Takeaways

  • Columbia, SC has a thriving coffee scene with a variety of options to choose from
  • You can explore different neighborhoods and find unique dietary options
  • Columbia’s coffee scene offers opportunities to explore local brews and coffee and food pairings

Top Coffee Shops in Columbia

If you’re a coffee lover in Columbia, you’re in luck! The city is home to a wide range of coffee shops that cater to all tastes and preferences. Whether you’re looking for a cozy spot to work or a place to catch up with friends, you’re sure to find a coffee shop that fits the bill. 

You may also find my guide to the best ice cream shops in Columbia helpful, too!

Here are some of the top coffee shops in Columbia that you should check out:

Coffee Shops in Columbia SC
(photo of my hot cup of coffee from Cool Beans Coffee Co. near the campus of the University of South Carolina)

Drip Coffee

Located in the Five Points neighborhood, Drip Coffee is a cozy and inviting spot that’s perfect for a morning cup of joe or an afternoon pick-me-up. It’s the quintessential coffee shop that you would expect to see in the young, artsy neighborhood. 

With two locations in Columbia, this popular coffee shop is known for its high-quality, handcrafted coffee drinks.

The vibe is hip and trendy, with a staff that’s always happy to chat with customers. They serve a variety of coffee drinks, including espresso, drip coffee, and cold brew. 

If you’re a coffee aficionado, you’ll appreciate the local coffee shops that roast their own beans in-house. At Drip Coffee, you can purchase their in-house roasted beans, including their “House Blend” and their “Ethiopia Yirgacheffe”. 

If you’re looking for a refreshing cold coffee option, you can’t go wrong with cold brew. At Drip Coffee, you can try their “Cold Fashioned” cold brew, made with Ethiopian Yirgacheffe beans. 

For a quick pick-me-up, espresso is the way to go. At Drip Coffee, you can try their “Cortado” (espresso with a small amount of steamed milk).

If you’re in the mood for something a little more unique, you’ll want to try one of the specialty coffee drinks. At Drip Coffee, you can try their “Honey Lavender Latte” or their “Mexican Mocha”

This cozy coffee shop is known for its unique coffee creations, including the Rose Cardamom Latte, which is made with rosewater and cardamom syrup.

They also make great chocolate chip cookies. The rich, chocolatey cookie is a perfect match for a smooth, creamy cappuccino. 

They also have a selection of other pastries and light snacks to enjoy with your coffee.

Honestly, this is one of the best places in Columbia to get dessert, too.

If you’re on a keto or paleo diet, they have bulletproof coffee and almond milk lattes. They also have gluten-free and vegan options available.

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Curiosity Coffee Bar

Curiosity Coffee Bar in Forest Acres is a great place to go if you’re looking for a unique coffee shop experience. 

The vibe is relaxed and laid-back, with comfortable seating and plenty of natural light. The shop also features a rotating selection of art on the walls, which adds to the atmosphere. 

The coffee menu is extensive, with a variety of pour-over and espresso drinks.

At Curiosity Coffee Bar, you can enjoy their “Colombia La Joya” or “Costa Rica Tarrazu” drip coffee. For a quick caffeine boost, enjoy their “Americano” (espresso with hot water).

They also have a selection of teas and pastries to choose from. Check out the “Curious George” (espresso, banana, peanut butter, and milk) or their “Curious Tonic” (espresso, tonic water, and lime) for something a little different.

For snacks, they offer a great vegan muffin that goes well with their pour-over coffee. Alternatively, the Turkey and Brie wrap with a latte or cappuccino makes a great savory and satisfying lunch.

For a fruity option, try their Strawberry Fields Forever pastry. If you’re looking for gluten-free options, they have gluten-free pastries and bread. They also offer almond milk and oat milk as dairy alternatives.

For a cozier option, try their Campfire Cold Brew, which is made with marshmallow syrup and served with a toasted marshmallow on top.

Curiosity Coffee Bar is a great place to work or catch up with friends.

Indah Coffee

Indah Coffee is a modern and stylish coffee shop that’s located in the heart of Columbia. They serve a variety of coffee drinks, including pour-over coffee, espresso, and cold brew. 

At Indah Coffee, you can enjoy their “Nitro Cold Brew” on tap, or take home a bottle of their “Black and Tan” cold brew. For something a little different, you can try their “Indah Mule” (cold brew, ginger beer, lime, and mint) or their “Indah Palmer” (cold brew, lemonade, and simple syrup). 

They also have a selection of pastries and light snacks to enjoy with your coffee. You can even take home a bag of their “Indah Espresso” or their “Indah Blend”.

 If you’re looking for CBD-infused coffee, they have it available. They also have almond milk and oat milk as dairy alternatives.

It makes a great place for date night in Columbia.

The Local Buzz

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The Local Buzz in Five Points delivers Central Park-like vibes to Columbia. This shop is so much more than what first meets the eye.

From the outside, it looks like a small, unassuming storefront. But inside, you’ll find a cozy, welcoming space with exposed brick walls, comfortable seating, and a mural that adds a pop of color to the room.

The vibe is upbeat and friendly, with a staff that’s always happy to chat with customers. The Local Buzz offers a variety of coffee drinks, including pour-over, espresso, and nitro cold brew.

For lunch, a sandwich or wrap can be a satisfying pairing with your coffee. The Local Buzz offers a variety of sandwiches, including the Brie and Bacon sandwich, which pairs well with their drip coffee. The creamy, tangy brie cheese complements the bold coffee flavor. 

Immaculate Consumption

If you’re looking for a coffee shop near the University of South Carolina, be sure to check out Immaculate Consumption. This popular coffee shop is located just a few blocks from campus, a hidden gem located behind the South Carolina State House. It’s a favorite among students and locals alike. 

They have been serving up scrumptious sandwiches and in-house roasted coffee for over 20 years. 

Their menu features a variety of classic coffee drinks, as well as a selection of pastries and other baked goods. If you’re looking for gluten-free options, they have gluten-free bread available. They also have almond milk and soy milk as dairy alternatives.

Don’t miss their Bahn Mi special, which goes fast, and always get a side of grits with your breakfast.

When it comes to finding the best coffee shops in Columbia, these are just a few of the top options to consider. No matter which coffee shop you choose, you’re sure to enjoy delicious coffee and a welcoming atmosphere.

Runner Ups

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The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli

If you’re looking for a coffee shop that serves delicious pastries, The Devine Cinnamon Roll Deli is the place to go. They offer a variety of coffee drinks, including espresso, drip coffee, and cold brew. They also have a selection of sweet and savory pastries, including their famous cinnamon rolls.

**Expert Tip: We tried to go on a Monday morning (parent’s weekend at USC) and they were sadly closed. The next time we are in Columbia I can update you because this is definitely on our to-do list of places to try.

Gourmet Shop Cafe

Gourmet Shop Cafe is a popular spot in Columbia that’s known for its delicious food and coffee. They offer a variety of coffee drinks, including espresso, drip coffee, and cold brew.

They also have a selection of breakfast and lunch items, including sandwiches, salads, and soups. Gourmet Shop Cafe is a great place to grab a coffee and a bite to eat.

This is actually my top pick for the best brunch in Columbia.

Blūm Coffee

If you are looking for a quick breakfast to-go, a pastry or baked good can be a great pairing with your coffee.

At Blūm Coffee, try their chocolate croissant or almond croissant with a latte or cappuccino. The buttery, flaky pastry pairs perfectly with the smooth, creamy coffee. 

If you like traditional drip coffee, try their “Bloomer’s Blend” or their “Ethiopia Guji” drip coffee. For something more unique, try their “Lavender Matcha Latte” or their “Cherry Almond Latte”.

Cool Beans Coffee Company

Cool Beans Coffee Shop in Columbia SC

For a taste of Columbia’s local coffee scene, check out Cool Beans Coffee Company. This family-owned coffee shop has been serving up delicious coffee and baked goods since 1991.

Their menu features a variety of classic coffee drinks and a selection of specialty drinks like the “Gamecock Mocha” and the “Palmetto Latte”.

Cool Beans Coffee Shop in Columbia SC

The Bridge

One of the most popular locally owned coffee shops in Columbia is The Bridge. This coffee shop is known for its friendly staff, inviting atmosphere, and delicious coffee.

They offer a wide variety of coffee drinks, including espresso, cappuccino, latte, and more. In addition to coffee, they also offer a selection of teas, smoothies, and baked goods. The Bridge is the perfect place to relax, catch up with friends, or get some work done.

Cafe Strudel

Another great locally owned coffee shop in Columbia is Cafe Strudel West Columbia. This coffee shop is known for its delicious breakfast and brunch options, as well as its high-quality coffee.

They offer a wide variety of coffee drinks, including pour-over coffee, espresso, cappuccino, and more. They also offer a selection of teas, smoothies, and baked goods.

Cafe Strudel West Columbia is the perfect place to start your day or enjoy a leisurely brunch.

Loveland Coffee

Loveland Coffee is a family-owned and operated specialty coffee roaster and cafe. They offer fresh coffee, friendly service, and a laid-back patio area that begs you to linger.

Try their Queen Bee latte, which is made with honey and lavender syrup.

Exploring Columbia’s Coffee Scene

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If you’re looking for a cozy and unique coffee shop in Columbia, look no further than the neighborhood coffee shops. Each area of Columbia has its own charm, and the coffee shops in these neighborhoods reflect that. 

One of the best places to start your coffee journey in Columbia is at the Soda City Market, held every Saturday in the heart of downtown.

Here you’ll find a variety of local coffee shops and roasters, each with their own unique offerings. From artisanal pour-overs to classic cappuccinos, there’s something for everyone at Soda City.

If you’re looking for a coffee shop with a view, head to Riverfront Park. This scenic park along the Congaree River is home to a number of coffee shops and cafes, each with their own outdoor seating areas where you can enjoy your coffee while taking in the beautiful views.

Five Points

5 Points, Columbia South Carolina
5 Points, Columbia South Carolina

Five Points is known for its vibrant nightlife and eclectic mix of shops and restaurants. The coffee shops in this area are no exception.

The Local Buzz is a popular spot for coffee and breakfast. They offer a variety of coffee drinks, as well as breakfast sandwiches and pastries. Drip Coffee is another great option. They have a cozy atmosphere and a wide selection of coffee drinks.

West Columbia

West Columbia is a charming area with a small-town feel. In this area, you’ll find Blūm Coffee, a coffee shop that prides itself on its unique coffee blends. They also offer a variety of pastries and snacks. Curiosity Coffee Bar is another great option. 

They have a beer and wine bar, as well as a variety of coffee drinks.

If beer is your thing, check out my guide to the best breweries in Columbia.

Devine Street

Devine Street is a popular shopping and dining destination in Columbia. It’s also home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, Cool Beans Coffee Company. This cozy coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as smoothies and pastries.

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Cayce

Cayce is a small town located just outside of Columbia. It’s home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, Piecewise Coffee Co. This cozy coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as breakfast sandwiches and pastries.

North Main

North Main is a historic neighborhood in Columbia with a mix of residential and commercial properties. It’s home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, Indah Coffee. This hip coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as a selection of pastries and snacks.

Canalside

Canalside is a newly developed area in Columbia with a mix of residential and commercial properties. It’s home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, Curiosity Coffee Bar. This trendy coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as beer and wine.

Lexington

Lexington is a suburb of Columbia with a small-town feel. It’s home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, The Coffee Shelf. This cozy coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as breakfast sandwiches and pastries.

Chapin

Chapin is a small town located just outside of Columbia. It’s home to one of the best coffee shops in the area, The Wired Goat Cafe. This cozy coffee shop offers a variety of coffee drinks, as well as breakfast sandwiches and pastries.

Conclusion

In conclusion, our journey through various coffee establishments highlighted the richness and diversity of flavors available.

From the aromatic coffee beans sourced at Drip  to the decadent cakes at The Divine Cinnamon Roll, every venue offered something unique.

From creamy milkshakes, aromatic chai, and freshly baked muffins, what else could you want? As a coffee enthusiast, it was a delight to find venues with an espresso bar or those that offered whole bean options for those who prefer to brew at home.

Furthermore, places like Indah Coffee not only tantalized our taste buds but also provided plenty of seating, ensuring a comfortable experience.

This exploration underscored the importance of supporting local bakery and coffee artisans, and it’s evident that our local scene is flourishing with flavors and experiences waiting to be savored.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best coffee shops in downtown Columbia?

If you’re looking for a great coffee shop in downtown Columbia, you have several options to choose from. Some of the best coffee shops in downtown Columbia include Drip Coffee, Curiosity Coffee Bar, Blüm Coffee, and Indah Coffee. All of these coffee shops offer a great selection of coffee and other beverages, as well as a cozy and welcoming atmosphere.

What are the most popular coffee roasters in Columbia, SC?

If you’re looking for great coffee in Columbia, SC, you’ll want to check out some of the local coffee roasters. Some of the most popular coffee roasters in Columbia include Indah Coffee, The Wired Goat, Loveland Coffee, and Black Tap Coffee. These roasters offer a wide variety of coffee blends and roast levels, so you’re sure to find something that suits your taste.

Where can I find the best drip coffee in Columbia, SC?

If you’re a fan of drip coffee, you’ll want to check out some of the best coffee shops in Columbia that specialize in drip coffee. Some of the best places to find drip coffee in Columbia include Drip Coffee, Curiosity Coffee Bar, Loveland Coffee, and Black Tap Coffee.

What are people saying about Indah Coffee in Columbia, SC?

Indah Coffee is one of the most popular coffee shops in Columbia, SC, and for good reason. Customers rave about the quality of the coffee, the friendly staff, and the cozy atmosphere. One customer on Yelp said, “Indah is definitely one of my favorite coffee shops in Columbia! The coffee is always delicious, and the staff is super friendly and welcoming.” Another customer said, “Indah is a great coffee shop! The coffee is fantastic, and the atmosphere is cozy and inviting. Definitely worth a visit!”