Java Jolt: The Top 5 Coffee Shops in Honolulu

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I’ve actually considered writing a book called “The People I’ve Met in Cafes.” There’s something about coffee shops that bring people together be it professionally or personally. I’ve come across several mentors, business colleagues, life-long friends and even met my college sweetheart at a Starbucks. Café culture certainly isn’t just about feeding a caffeine fix. To me, the ultimate coffee spot is inviting and warm with a cozy ambiance, soothing tunes, some wall-art, and great coffee. For the best brew around town check out Java Jolt: The Top 5 Coffee Shops in Honolulu:

1 Coffee Gallery

It’s the haute coffee spot in kitschy Haleiwa town that’s got that true café vibe.  Over 50 types of locally grown coffee beans are not only interchanged for daily drip selections but also available for sale and shipped globally. It’s an ideal way to try coffees found through out the entire island chain- a true taste of Hawaii. Along with flavorful caffeinated drips, order up unique homemade pastries like the maple blondie with bacon crumble, sweet potato haupia bar, and mac nut bars. Try the Acai bowl for breakfast or the veggie chili for lunch. And, enjoy free WIFI at the Coffee Gallery.

Coffee Gallery is located at 66-250 Kamehamea Hwy. 808.637.5355.

2 Fresh Cafe

Fresh Café is a hip coffee spot in an industrial district part of town. The cozy gem on a small side street doubles as a quaint café and nightspot, typically hosting regular events for the ultra cool crowd. The cafe serves up 100% Kona Coffee, homemade cookies, bagel sandwiches, soups, salads, and scrumptious desserts. It’s an urban oasis for artists, students, musicians and entrepreneurs alike. Fresh fronts a large warehouse space that acts as a late-night concert hall. Fresh has become even more multi-faceted with catering services and booking options for promotions, private or public seminars.

Fresh Cafe is located at 831 Queen St. 808.688.8055

3 Glazers Coffee

The quaint cafe just around the corner from the University of Hawaii at Manoa earns regular raves for their tasty espresso options and unlimited WIFI. The cozy ambiance is by far one of the best aspects of Glazers Coffee featuring low lighting, dark woods, soft jazz music and comfortable seating. But, the best part about Glazers is the time and effort baristas spend to craft your drink. The lattes are almost always served up with frothy foam art.

Glazers Coffee is located at 2700 S. King St. 808.3916548.

4 Coffee Talk

Almost everyone knows its name and its certainly centrally located in the hip neighborhood of Kaimuki. And, like almost every thing in LA, Coffee Talk is just about 15 minutes from it all making the roomy coffee spot an equally popular meeting place. In addition to it’s work friendly ambiance, Coffee Talk serves up some solid coffee and scrumptious sweets. Current seasonal sips to swoon for include the pumpkin pie latte and toasted marshmallow hot cocoa. Regular brews and iced teas are ideal when paired with a stacked high deli sandwich or fat-free oatcake. And, the haunt even hosts live music in evening hours. Now that’s some serious café culture.

Coffee Talk is located at 3601 Wai’alae Ave. 808.737.7444

5 Honolulu Coffee Company

Honolulu Coffee Companies are Oahu’s lesser scale version of Starbucks. Of course, we too boast Bucks on nearly every block. And, Coffee Beans too. But, if Honolulu Coffee Company were to spread its wings outside of the Aloha State, it’d fit right in with the Bean, Bucks and Pete’s across the globe. But for now, their sole mission is to provide the ultimate Kona Coffee experience for their customers in an island setting that reflects Hawaii’s Aloha Spirit. At Honolulu Coffee Company cafes you’ll smell the aroma of Kona Coffee beans before you even step foot inside. In the Artisian style of great old-world coffee roasters, all beans are roasted on site in small batches to provide just the right sight, sound and smell. In house pastry chefs make all of the morning-baked goods, French macaroons, cakes, cookies and confections fresh daily from scratch. And, if you don’t have a Honolulu Coffee Company near you, order blends online for a true taste of Hawaii wherever you are.

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