(1) Starbucks on East Boulevard
Neighborhood: Dilworth. Site.
Pros: Fast, reliable internet. Large format. Comfortable, new furniture (they remodeled a few months ago). Opens at 5:30 a.m. for early risers.
Cons: Most hated parking lot in Charlotte. Also, it’s Starbucks, so all of you national brand haters will hate it.
Pro Tip: Will become the first store in N.C. to introduce the “Evenings Program” and serve alcohol in mid-March. Details here.
(2) Not Just Coffee
Neighborhood: Uptown, 7th Street Public Market. Site.
Pros: Amazing coffee. Parking deck validates for first 90 minutes. 7th Street Public Market is spacious and offers killer food options, etc.
Cons: Limited counter space at their station, but there are plenty of big tables all around it. Kind of intimidating to order because they take their coffee very seriously.
Pro Tip: The market’s dedicated “work station” is right next to NJC in the back corner.
Neighborhood: Dilworth. Site.
Pros: Spacious. Nice sized plastic cups for water with ice pellets. Cowhide chairs.
Cons: Not a ton of comfortable, lounge seating.
(4) Luna’s Living Kitchen
Neighborhood: South End. Site.
Pros: Bright, airy vibe and big counter for solo work sessions.
Cons: Doesn’t open until 8 a.m. Pricy.
Pro Tip: The latte with coconut milk tastes like a liquid macaroon. This is a vegan spot so there’s no cow’s milk. They make their own hemp, coconut and almond milk on site.
(5) Sunflour Baking Company
Neighborhood: Elizabeth. Site.
Pros: Bright. You can usually find a table. Outstanding snacks.
Cons: Small. Hardly any comfortable seating.
Pro Tip: The idea of Charlotte Agenda was hatched at this coffee shop.
(6) Central Coffee
Neighborhood: Plaza Midwood. Site.
Pros: A true neighborhood joint where the likelihood is high that they’ll learn your name and your order if you’re a regular. Damn good coffee.
Cons: Small space. Usually very busy with a line out the door in the morning.
Pro Tip: Seating is very limited so finding somewhere to work is sometimes a bust. They provide signs that you can put on your table indicating you’re willing to share it with a stranger. Look for one of these if the place is full.
(7) Smelly Cat
Neighborhood: NoDa. Site.
Pros: Chill, artsy spot with some nice little work nooks made out of repurposed old doors.
Cons: Kind of dark.
(8) Amelie’s Uptown
Neighborhood: Uptown. Site.
Pros: Massive. Delicious food. Massive (writing it twice because it’s huge).
Cons: Uptown parking.
(9) Mugs Coffee
Neighborhood: Park Road. Site.
Pros: The owner, Oliver Wu, typically is the guy that serves you coffee. Normally can find a table because this place flies under the radar. Very clean restrooms.
Cons: Part of a shopping center instead of a truly unique building.
(10) Rhino Market
Neighborhood: FreeMoreWest. Site.
Pros: Coffee options. Sneaky cool patio. Easy to switch from coffee to beer.
Cons: Not very many tables inside.
Pro Tip: Excellent breakfast sandwiches.
Common Market (South End) – Cozy. Heart of South End. Normally packed.
Earl’s Grocery (Elizabeth) – Ample seating. Tons of parking. Great food. Internet is okay.
Crown Station (Elizabeth) – This is a cafe/bar combo so your drink can evolve to the alcoholic variety as the day progresses. They do some special coffee-based cocktails too.
The Daily Press (NoDa) – Currently in limbo as they move locations.
Cluck ‘N Cup (South End) – Limited seating, but excellent vibe.
Rush Espresso (Uptown, Brevard Court) – Tiny but cool vibe and delicious coffee.