Why do We Love Budapest? Because it’s a great city, great for dining, great for drinking, great for culture. Film stars love it. Here at We Love Budapest, we select the Great 8s, the best venues, movies and events to grace our fair city in 2017. Today we bring you the Great 8 Cafés, from the hippest downtown hangouts to tucked-away, low-key destinations, all serving more than just coffee. Handmade cakes, freshly squeezed juices, the best Hungarian wines and even select designer merchandise are all on offer at many of these hotspots.
The Adna looks no different from any of the many cafés found around nearby Kálvin Square. In a spacious room, people read, chat or study their laptops, sip hot drinks, nibble on a sandwich, maybe play a board game. What makes the place stand out is its menu free of any kind of alcohol. Belonging to the Reformed Church Drug Mission, the venue offers the kind of choices that you probably wouldn’t find at a more hedonistic Budapest hangout. This innovative alternative to the party madness in nearby District VII serves decent coffee, all kinds of loose-leaf teas and a lavish selection of hot chocolates, as well as tasty dishes, throughout the day. The evening hours bring concerts and workshops to this sober site.
Address: Budapest 1093, Török Pál utca 6
Bruberi Coffee & Bakery
Even for those who don’t live there, Buda’s upscale Rózsadomb neighborhood is worth visiting for offbeat hangouts such as the newly opened Bruberi. Its signature brew is created from light- and dark-roasted premium beans, a top-quality booster served amid a turquoise color scheme, coffee machine, walls and cups and all. Customers are welcome for breakfast with calorie-rich French toast and organic scrambled eggs, to be enjoyed with an espresso or a flat white as a morning starter. Tasteful treats are also offered throughout the day, including freshly baked cakes, midday lunch specials, smoothies and juices.
Address: Budapest 1025, Pentelei Molnár utca 17
Cube Coffee Bar
A cube-shaped establishment with rustic bare-brick walls welcomes coffee aficionados to recently revamped Hunyadi tér, a few minutes from Andrássy Avenue. Featuring a soothing mix of old and new, Cube is on a mission to bring painstakingly sourced fair-trade beans to the heart of Hungary’s capital. The fresh aromas of beans roasted on the spot evoke the tangy tastes of citrus, sweet chocolate and piquant paprika flavors. You can pair your cortado with a hummus wrap for lunch before ordering a vegan lemon-poppy-seed cupcake. Given the later opening hours on Fridays, you can also start the weekend with a glass of red or white sourced from a small-scale Hungarian winery.
- 1067 Budapest, Hunyadi tér 8.
Found on Pozsonyi Road, a charming street lined with cafés, restaurants and bakeries in gentrifying District XIII, Ébresztő is more than just a go-to locale for a creamy flat white. A slice of rich cheesecake goes well with the masterfully brewed boosters, but for a vitamin kick, a smooth blend of freshly squeezed juices will do the trick. For breakfast, choose a flaky pastry rich with tasty fillings. In addition to treating customers to delectable treats, the café showcases all kinds of designer products on its shelves, including bags and accessories. Regular workshops present age-old and innovative methods for making the best coffee.
- 1137 Budapest, Jászai Mari tér 4/B
As a recent addition to Óbuda’s ever-growing line of chic coffeehouses, Flat White at Kolosy Square is a peaceful oasis, where natural materials, green fittings and plenty of incoming light evoke the feeling of summertime lounging year-round. Every day from 8am, customers can get an early start here with morning boosters such as hefty breakfast burgers, light omelettes, sweet French toast, and oatmeal with coconut milk – all this crowned with a cup of Flat White’s own light-roasted coffee, of course. Those with gluten or lactose intolerance can also enjoy a variety of treats. Don’t miss the special white blend, an in-house mixture of green coffee beans with the flavor of citrus fruit.
- 1037 Budapest, Szépvölgyi út 15.
Madal Café - Parliament
One of the city’s most spacious new-wave coffeehouses is right next to one of the most prominent landmarks in town, the Parliament building, the crown jewel of Budapest’s Kossuth Square. Whether you have come for a good old cappuccino, a fresh filter coffee or a spicy chai latte, Madal, a pioneer in the city’s specialty-coffee subculture, gets it all right. Relaxing background music sets the scene for sipping reviving brews, while plenty of natural light floods through the café’s large windows. To accompany your java, sandwiches, pastries and cakes should sate most appetites.
- 1054 Budapest, Alkotmány utca 4.
Piknik Coffee & More
Opposite Szent István Park, a peaceful oasis in District XIII, petite Piknik offers all kinds of things along with its caffeinated merchandise. Attracting plentiful returning custom since it opened earlier in 2017, this charming refuge pours premium specialty brews sourced from Italian roasting champions Rubens Gardelli. During the warmer months, you can pick up picnic baskets from here and fill them with the shop’s vegan cakes, meat-free sandwiches, selections of seeds and dried fruit, and retreat to the nearby park for outdoor lounging. For boozy chilling, Piknik can even provide a bottle of prosecco with suitable plastic glasses.
- 1137 Budapest, Pozsonyi út 43.
Shimaya Coffee Roastery
Presenting a slice of Japanese coffeehouse culture in Budapest, at standing-only Shimaya Roastery, customer and barista develop an easy connection while Oriental filter coffee is being prepared for takeaway. Once your choice is measured and ground, and water poured into a special coffee maker, a timer beeps at the end of the 40-second steeping, giving you a smooth and sweet concoction. Beans sourced from Colombia, Brazilia, Guatemala and Indonesia are also offered for purchase. Besides quality coffee, cups of green tea sourced from Japanese farms are also available, including accessories for sipping, such as pieces of hand-painted Arita porcelain.
- 1052 Budapest, Vármegye utca 7.