Food & Drink

If You're Looking for the Best Coffee Shops in Indianapolis, We Found 'Em

Published On 06/29/2016 Published On 06/29/2016
Calvin Fletcher’s Coffee Company

Calvin Fletcher’s Coffee Company

Fletcher Place

An early entry to the Fletcher Place neighborhood, Calvin Fletcher’s is a coffee shop with a mission. With no previous background in coffee, Doug and Judy Litsey and their son, Jeff, opened the not-for-profit shop in 2009 with the goal of supporting the community. Since then, it’s become the gathering place the owners envisioned: a shop with a welcoming atmosphere, local art, and excellent coffee and pastries. Profits are donated to help support neighborhood causes, so grab a Fletcher Place blend or a spicy Calvin Pepper, enjoy a croissant from Circle City Sweets, and feel good about supporting the neighborhood.

Bee Coffee Roasters

Downtown (& Eagle Creek)

Owners Bj Davis and Andy Gilman not only roast some of the city’s best coffee -- which they serve and sell in Bee's two locations and at local farmers markets -- but they also roast coffee for other shops and restaurants as well. Davis and Gilman have become leaders in the local coffee community, providing education and support to others and working to grow the city’s java culture. Gilman is also the self-appointed commissioner of the League of Lattes, a monthly latte art competition among area baristas that’s held at various coffee shops.

Coal Yard Coffee

Coal Yard Coffee

Irvington

Venture off of Irvington’s main drag and you’ll discover the laid-back vibe of Coal Yard Coffee, home of local art work, live music, monthly comedy nights, occasional food trucks, and well-made coffee drinks. Order a pour-over or kick back on a couch with a dirty chai. Although rough around the edges, this garage-turned-coffee-shop is comfortable and friendly, and feels hidden… for now. Honestly, with its location right on the Pennsy Trail and in the midst of the Coal Factory redevelopment project, more people are sure to discover it. But by then, you’ll be a regular.

Foundry Provisions

Herron-Morton

The 16th Street corridor is seeing lots of action lately, as restaurants and shops find a niche within the nearby Herron-Morton and Old Northside neighborhoods. The orange Foundry Provisions building once served as the metal workshop for Herron School of Art & Design; it’s now a hangout for artsy Herron High School students, stroller-pushing parents, and bike-riding neighborhood regulars. It’s also become a popular place for coffee meetings. Foundry Provisions serves coffee from Julian Roasters, pastries from Circle City Sweets, bagels from Shapiro’s Delicatessen, and breakfast items and lunch sandwiches.

Funkyard

Funkyard Coffee Shop & Gallery

Fountain Square

This coffee shop/art gallery combo feels perfectly at home in the offbeat Fountain Square neighborhood. Owners Sherry and Roger Stiver exhibit more than 50 artists working in a variety of media, and call Funkyard a gallery that happens to sell coffee. But that doesn’t mean you won’t find great java -- because you will. Funkyard brews coffee from Bee Coffee Roasters and offers gelato as well as a selection of pastries. Stop in during the monthly First Friday gallery openings and try the shop’s signature espresso milkshake, made with ice cream and a double shot of espresso.

Hubbard & Cravens Coffee and Tea

Broad Ripple (& other locations)

The big guys in local coffee began as roasters and wholesalers 25 years ago, then opened their first retail shop in 1995. Founders Rick Hubbard and Jerry Cravens have kept the focus on seasonal, sustainably raised artisan coffees and teas, and the shops have become mainstays in their neighborhoods. You’ll also spot H&C at local farmers markets. And if you stop in at the Carmel location, you’ll find a menu that includes juices, smoothies, wine, and craft beer.

Jolene Ketzenberger/Thrillist

MiSTERLiNO

Speedway

Based in Italy, MiSTERLiNO has locations in Europe, the Middle East, South Africa, and one in the United States. As odd as it seems that the company’s lone outlet in the Western Hemisphere is in Indiana, it makes more sense when you know that it's located not far from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the sleek Dallara IndyCar Factory, and that it's popular amongst Italian drivers and engineers. This place has just remodeled and rebranded and is roasting beans in-house (rather than shipping them in from Italy), meaning fresher, better coffee at the Euro-style café, which also serves paninis, pizzas, and Italian meats & cheeses -- and has a full-service bar.

Quills Coffee

Quills Coffee

Canal District

Yes, it’s a little hard to find, tucked into the 9 on Canal building, but if you take the time to find Quills, you’ll be rewarded with an excellent cup of coffee. Founded in 2007 by Nathan and Amy Quillo and Nathan’s brother, Gabe, Louisville-based Quills focuses on roasting ethically sourced, seasonal specialty coffees. Have a seat at the brew bar and talk coffee with the knowledgeable and talented baristas, who can make you a beautiful latte, or just hide out and study; the apartment complex where Quills is located is popular with IUPUI grad students.

Monon Coffee Company

Broad Ripple (& Fall Creek Place)

Located just off the Monon Trail, this neighborhood mainstay has that boho village vibe that you can still find once you get off of busy Broad Ripple Ave. Fill up a cup with the Choo-Choo Brew, or order a White Zombie, settle into a comfy chair, and snag the Wi-Fi, or grab the table in the back for a business meeting. The Fall Creek Place location in the front of Indy’s Kitchen is a handy stop on the way Downtown, or for a java jolt after a class at CITYOGA.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
1. Calvin Fletcher's Coffee Company 647 Virginia Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46203

The owners of this Fletcher Place caffeine stop opened the venue in 2009 with the altruistic mission of creating a community space. That goal now manifests itself in the shop's welcoming atmosphere, local art, and superb coffee and pastries. Profits are donated to help support neighborhood causes, so grab a Fletcher Place blend or a spicy Calvin Pepper, enjoy a croissant from Circle City Sweets, and feel good about supporting the neighborhood.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
2. Bee Coffee Roasters 201 S Capitol Ave Ste 110, Indianapolis, IN 46225

Nestled in the Pan Am plaza building in Downtown Indianapolis, owners Bj Davis and Andy Gilman serve and sell some of the city's best coffee, and sell it by the bag as well. And you can bet your espresso-based beverage will be beautiful in addition to tasty -- Gilman is the self-appointed commissioner of the League of Lattes, a monthly latte art competition among area baristas that’s held at various coffee shops.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
3. Coal Yard Coffee 5547 Bonna Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46219

Located in a hidden corner off of Irvington's main street, this garage-turned-coffee shop projects indy vibes with plenty of local art work on display, as well live music, monthly comedy nights, occasional food trucks, and plenty of well-made coffee drinks. Though the classics are prepared expertly here, the caffeine menu doesn't eschew the more treat-like beverages, offering tasty takes on Jasmine Pearl teas, white chocolate, and vanilla soy-based drinks.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
4. Foundry Provisions 236 E 16th St, Indianapolis, IN 46202

The bright orange facade of the Foundry Provisions may as well reflect the colorful crowd within: the coffee shop is now a hangout for artsy Herron High School students, stroller-pushing parents, and bike-riding neighborhood regulars. It’s also become a popular place for coffee meetings. Foundry Provisions serves coffee from Julian Roasters, pastries from Circle City Sweets, bagels from Shapiro’s Delicatessen, and breakfast items and lunch sandwiches.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
5. Funkyard 1114 Prospect St, Indianapolis, IN 46203

This cozy hobo chic space in Fountain Square welcomes all into its homey space, but especially the artistically-minded. The coffeeshop-cum-gallery hosts more than 50 artists working in a variety of media, and you're sure to find something worth your attention while you're sipping on coffee from Bee Coffee Roasters or enjoying a cup of gelato. Stop in during the monthly First Friday gallery openings and try the shop’s signature espresso milkshake, made with ice cream and a double shot of espresso.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
6. Hubbard & Cravens Coffee and Tea 6229 Carrollton Ave, Indianapolis, IN 46220

Seasonal, sustainably raised artisan coffees and teas are the focus at this store, and founders Rick Hubbard and Jerry Cravens do it so well they even take online orders of their sacheted teas and Central American micro lots. And if you stop in at the Carmel location, you’ll find a menu that includes juices, smoothies, wine, and craft beer.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
7. Mister Lino 1201 Main St, Speedway, IN 46224

Based in Italy, Lino’s has locations throughout the world. As odd as it may seem that the company’s lone outlet in the U.S. is in Indiana, it makes more sense when you know that Lino’s is located in the sleek Dallara IndyCar Factory not far from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and that it's popular amongst the drivers. Lino's Indianapolis roasts their beans in-house (rather than shipping them in from Italy), meaning the coffee is always as fresh as possible. The Euro-style cafe also serves panini and pizzas, and has a full bar if, for some reason, you don't want to drink the coffee.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
8. Quills Coffee 335 W 9th St, Indianapolis, IN 46202

Yes, Quills Coffee can be a little hard to find, as it's tucked away into the 9 on Canal building, but if you take the time to find this place, you’ll be rewarded with an excellent cup of coffee. Founded in 2007 by Nathan and Amy Quillo and Nathan’s brother, Gabe, Louisville-based Quills focuses on roasting ethically sourced, seasonal specialty coffees. Most of the clientele here are the grad students who populate the apartment complex above the cafe, but it's become quite popular with locals as well. Quills roasts the beans for all of their cafes themselves in small batches to ensure quality, and they pair their brews with treats from local bakeries.

Previous Venue Next Venue Venue Description
9. Monon Coffee Company 920 E Westfield Blvd, Indianapolis, IN 46220

Located just off the Monon Trail, this neighborhood mainstay has that boho village vibe that you can still find off of busy Broad Ripple Avenue. Open since 1997, Monon Coffee has made a name for itself with its inventive espresso drinks like the signature White Zombie, a white chocolate mocha with white espresso that could bring you back from the dead. Roasting their own coffee from fair trade beans, Monon has a bit of fun where other roasting companies are deadly serious—their most popular roast isn't a single-origin coffee but a blend called the "Choo Choo Brew." They pair their excellent coffee with treats from local bakeries, plenty of comfortable seating, and free wifi.