With numerous chains and lots of local places, getting your caffeine fix in Greenville, SC is easy. What’s hard is actually picking a place to go to. I try to shop local as often as I can. My favorite pizza? The local joint right outside of downtown. And with my coffee there’s no difference. And so here my favorite places, where I go to find the best coffee in Greenville SC.
Now this post doesn’t contain all of the the coffee shops in Greenville. There are many more that I have yet to try. Trust me – they are on my to-do list. But when I just need to go somewhere to grab a latte and work for a few hours, these are the coffee shops I head to.
1. Coffee Underground
This is my go-to coffee place when I’m downtown. The coffee is decent and they have a wide selection of food and desserts. But it’s the place itself that has me coming back.
First off, Coffee Underground seems hidden away. A secret located below street level near one of the busiest intersections on Main Street.
Steps leading down near the corner of Coffee & Main take you to a small little thoroughfare with a few wrought iron tables and chairs. But it’s the inside that I love.
The main seating area is a mishmash of tables, booths, wingback chairs, and loveseats. My choice for the day always depends on my mood. Do I want to lean back and read with a nice cappuccino? Or will I be working and therefore need a small table?
I just love hanging out here. Coffee Underground always has people scattered among the room. But it very rarely feels busy or packed. I’ve never thought the person next to me is reading over my shoulder or looking at my screen. (Huge pet peeve of mine.)
With all this love I’m pouring on it though, is it all rainbows and roses? Well, no. My biggest complaint is the Wi-Fi. If you purchase an item for $2 or more, you can get a Wi-Fi slip that is good for just 2 hours. I totally understand why they do this, but if I grab lunch and a pricey coffee drink (and the place isn’t busy), I would love to be able to stay for longer.
But that’s what you get for a downtown location. The prices are a bit high and there are restrictions.
Location: Google Map
This is hipster heaven.
Located at the base of the Bank of America building in the One City Plaza, Methodical is tucked away and in the middle of it.
Walking inside everything is clean, white, organized, and in order. Intricate coffee devices line the counter. The staff is friendly and helpful. But my favorite thing about Methodical?
The coffee is fantastic.
Seriously the espresso with milk may have actually made me moan when I took a sip. I may not be a coffee connoisseur, but I know when it’s good. And this stuff was good.
Plus the blue and white cups were beautiful. And I love any coffee shop that gives you an actual cup if you’re dining in. (I hate the useless waste of single use coffee cups if I’m just going to take a seat.)
Their seating inside is very nice and they have a few tables outside. There’s also the One City Plaza right there with plenty of additional chairs and tables (though if you take your coffee there you will be getting it to-go).
Location: Google Map
3. The Village Grind
What is hipster? Is it the couches and mishmash feel of Coffee Underground? Or the Apple-like interior of Methodical? Or is it the Village Grind with edison bulbs, exposed beams and brick, plants dangling from the ceiling, and colorful art on the walls?
I would classify all three as hipster, but maybe I’m just not a good judge of hipster. But I do know one thing…
I love it.
The Village Grind is located in a budding, new neighborhood in Greenville – the West Village. Home to art galleries, an amazing locally-sourced restaurant, a growler haus, a delicious brunch spot (called Golden Brown and Delicious no less), and a bunch of empty store fronts just waiting for the next business owner to take it over.
The prices at the Village Grind aren’t cheap. My 16oz latte cost $4.59 (tax included). But it was delicious and came in an actual cup (something I always love). Give me good coffee in a beautiful setting and I’m happy.
And while the seating is a bit limited, the Wi-Fi is free. (And for someone who works from home, this is crucial.)
I also love their menu. As a self-proclaimed non-coffee afficionado, I sometimes struggle with the figuring out differences between all the various kinds of coffee. Here every item on their menu is represented by a small drawing that literally shows what it’s made of. Not really sure of the difference between a cappuccino and a latte? Now you do.
The only thing I don’t like about The Village Grind? The fact they close at 4pm! I wish they were open just a little bit later. 4pm seems to come so quick on some days. (And many days I’m not out the door till 3pm.)
But I can forgive them for this one thing. I just need to learn how to get my shit together earlier.
Location: Google Map
4. 101 Espresso Bar
This is a tiny coffee place in a tiny building. A building shaped like a triangle.
And I love it.
Walking in I was shocked by how colorful and light it was. Paintings done by one of the owners cover the walls. A simple menu hangs opposite the doorway and the main barista area dominates the front of the building (that’s maybe 10 feet wide?).
Both times I’ve visited in the last 2 weeks the person behind the bar greeted me warmly and struck up a conversation with me as they prepared my latte. (My first drink was an “Almond Joy” – sweet and delicious. The second a hot, plain latte – my go-to.)
That’s when I learned about the art on the walls and how she had only started painting in the last 6 or so years. Staring at the peacocks on the second floor, I was absolutely amazed.
If you want to chill and hang out for a bit, you can either head outside to the tables and chairs they’ve set up under a large awning. Or you can head upstairs via the tiny spiral staircase (though watch your head on the way down).
A few small tables fill the space upstairs. Most are made out of reclaimed wood, and all are decorated with a tiny potted plant. But my favorite part about the upstairs was the paintings. Specifically the peacocks which stole my heart.
Due to its prime location (3 minute drive from my house), its decent prices, and its lovely decor, this may be my new go-to coffee place when I need to escape the house and do some work elsewhere. (The Wi-Fi connection was great.)
Location: Google Map
5. West End Coffee Shop
From my friends who know coffee, they told me that West End Coffee Shop is where it’s at. And when I get my latte there, it’s definitely good.
But that’s not what stands out to me at the West End Coffee Shop. Here, like with Coffee Underground, it’s the ambiance that won me over.
The inside is clean and modern, but not an overload of white like Methodical. Here there’s color – tastefully done of course – but color. It looks modern without looking sterile.
This coffee house is also quieter. Located past the baseball stadium, it marks (in my opinion) the end of not only the West End, but also of downtown.
The hustle and bustle is missing here. As are the insanely high prices. Not cheap, but also not expensive.
The only downside with the West End Coffee Shop is its lack of outdoor seating. Just two small tables are lined up against the window on the sidewalk. I had no problem grabbing a seat there one Sunday, but in case they are busy – your only option for seating may be indoors.
Location: Google Map
6. Joe’s Place
Okay so this may actually be considered a bookstore. But they do serve coffee. And it’s beautiful.
They only recently moved out of downtown and into the Pettigru Neighborhood (though still relatively close to downtown if you want to walk it).
The new building is actually an old house. A maze of rooms with hardwood floors, interesting artwork on the walls, and books in every room. Looking for a particular genre? Just set out and explore the house until you find the room you are looking for.
There are also comfortable chairs and benches placed in almost every room. See a book you like? Just sit back and peruse it to your leisure.
But my favorite thing about Joe’s is the balcony out back. Here I can grab a latte and then post up at one of the tables for a couple of hours. Shaded and comfortable, one afternoon I had it all to myself.
I love Joe’s.