Five years ago, coffee enthusiasts might have found a trip to Prague a little disappointing. At a time when the rest of Europe was already in the throes of a craft coffee obsession, even the words ‘filter coffee’ might have produced some strange looks in the Czech capital. Still, while the city may have come late to the game, a wave of bold baristas and new openings has proved what a difference a few years can make. Delicious, perfectly roasted and brewed beverages can now be found across the city, in the oldest cafés as well as the newest.
Perhaps the most enjoyable aspect of Prague’s coffee scene is its lack of pretentiousness. Whether your beverage of choice is a cold-pressed speciality brew or a thick and frothy latte, you’ll find the same excellent service with a smile at these must-visit coffee shops.
Můj Šálek Kávy
Doubleshot, one of the most respected roasters in Prague, opened its first coffee shop – Můj Šálek Kávy – in 2011. A serious favourite among connoisseurs, the café is staffed by expert baristas who share a real passion for the art of coffee making. Speak to them to see what specials they have to offer; the team is committed to experimenting with the best new ways to serve a brew. The food has also become a real pull. The menu changes frequently to make the most of seasonal produce, with breakfast, lunch and dinner served throughout the week. You’ll have to book to experience the legendary Sunday brunch, but it will be worth it.
Můj Šálek Kávy, Křižíkova 105, 186 00 Prague, +420 725 556944
The latest offering from Doubleshot, Místo opened in the summer of 2015 and is already a firm favourite. The roastery has proved its style pedigree with its largest space yet, presenting an irresistibly on-trend space in terms of design. Not that this takes away from the standard of its fare. Its coffee is, naturally, of the highest quality, and drinks range from warming espressos and macchiatos to indulgent affogatos (espresso with ice cream). The food is just as delicious as has come to be expected from the Doubleshot team, and the adventurous should be sure to round off a meal with a tasty coffee cocktail.
Místo, Bubenečská 12, 160 00 Prague, +420 727 914535
Located in Prague’s fashionable Vinohrady neighbourhood, Coffee Room does two things exceptionally well. The first is, of course, coffee. The second is atmosphere. Pop in for a brew and you can be certain of a warm welcome; if you’re lucky enough to get a table (this place has seriously loyal customers), choose from an expertly curated selection of magazines. Breakfast is a speciality here, now extended to 12pm by popular demand. From carnivores to vegans, every taste is catered to, with dishes incorporating as much fresh produce as possible. The toasted banana bread with homemade peanut butter is a firm favourite, with good reason.
Coffee Room, Korunní 74, 101 00 Prague, +420 736 171990
Named after the district of Prague in which it can be found – a favourite with local foodies – Kafe Karlín was created by coffee specialists Zdeněk Smrčka and Adam Dvořák. Smrčka is a latte art specialist and has won national prizes as a barista. Dvořák has a background in business, but changed professions to follow his real love, coffee. The espresso bar offers brews made with its own speciality coffee, roasted from high-quality green beans, as well as hosting a variety of excellent roasts from across Europe. Small but perfectly formed, the space also regularly hosts coffee courses, organised by the owners and open to both professionals and amateurs.
Kafe Karlín, Sokolovská 46-51, 108 00 Prague, +420 222 311279
Grand Café Orient
First opened in 1912 on the first floor of architect Josef Gočár’s Cubist House of the Black Madonna, Grand Café Orient closed in the 1920s, but luckily for visitors to Prague has since been lovingly restored and re-opened its doors in 2005. Try the Algerian coffee – a speciality of Prague despite the name. A tall glass of eggnog, espresso and whipped cream, this dish is where coffee and dessert come together. If even this is not enough to satiate your sweet tooth, you’ll be glad to know that the Grand Café Orient offers an extensive range of delicious cakes, pastries, puddings and more.
Grand Café Orient, Ovocný trh 19, 110 00 Prague, +420 224 224240