A cup of coffee a day keeps the crabby mood away.

Best coffee shops outside of the city

Over the years I have become quite the coffee shop connoisseur- well, more like the London Fog connoisseur. I’m rather particular about supporting and frequenting the coffee shops with high quality drinks, gluten-free food options, positive vibes, and lastly, the coffee shops with the best co-working environments. I have put together a short list of what I believe to be the five coffee shops. The places below are all great for ordering your favorite drink, munchies, and working remotely. They are all reasonably priced, and have at the minimum, one allergy friendly and vegan option for those interested.

My Half of the Sky | Wheaton, IL

My Half of the Sky is a social justice coffee shop on a mission to put an end to modern day slavery. “My Half” for short, is advocating, educating, and creating opportunity for those marginalized and affected by modern day slaver. Coupled with the coffee shop, the My Half Kitchen, a nonprofit- registered 501(c)(3)- creates the baked goods seen and sold in the shop. These goodies are created by women and girls set free from human trafficking. Aside from the delectable baked goods, the coffee and tea selection is in my opinion unrivaled in the area!

What to order:

  • London Fog (the old way) with Oat Milk and Honey instead of syrup.

  • Latte with Oat Milk and Honey

  • Gluten- Free Quiche

brewpoint Founders Location | Elmhurst, IL

I grew up in Elmhurst and coffee shop hangs weren’t really a thing until I was in high school when Brewpoint came along and changed the Elmhurst coffee culture. A town once dependent on Starbucks or another fast food coffee destination, now thrives on the Brewpoint beans. I remember the grand opening of Brewpoint- they truly were the talk of the town. It’s beautiful to look back on how the coffee shop has transformed the Elmhurst community. Now, years later, they have multiple locations and roast their own coffee! The founders location located in Downtown Elmhurst is my favorite because it stole a piece of my heart and was the first coffee shop I ever worked from! I would get there early and claim the “book nook” as I call it- a corner carved out with comfy cushions and pillows with bookshelves above it, creating an alcove like space perfect for the European-esque daydream I was trying to live out to fuel that day’s creativity.

What to order:

  • Amelia Earhart Latte with Oat Milk

  • Gluten- Free Banana Chocolate Chip Muffin

Brewpoint Workshop | Elmhurst, IL

The Brewpoint Workshop is one of my favorite coffee shops for socializing. The large open space and plethora of seating allows for friends and I to catch up comfortably and not feel like we’re squished next to each other or breathing other people’s air. It’s a bustling environment for meetings and events, as well. A friend of mine, Gina, hosted a yoga class there a few months ago in the back room and it was incredible! I loved the transition from coffee shop life to yoga studio life without having to leave the building. I’m hoping they host more fitness events there- it was easy to workout then grab my favorite drink after!

What to order:

  • London Fog extra hot with Almond Milk

  • Gluten- Free Muffin- whichever is on available/ on rotation

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Cafe K’Tizo | Wheaton, IL

I discovered Cafe K’Tizo when I collaborated with Enneagram with Amy at the end of 2019. She suggested the cafe as a meeting place and the tea lover that I am, was over the moon to see a near floor to ceiling wall of tea options! I still have yet to try all of them, but my goal is to someday taste them all. I was surprised to learn how many gluten-free options they have as well. From snacks to full meals Cafe K’Tizo meets my gluten- intolerant needs.

What to order:

  • Peachy Summer Fun Tea

  • Gluten- Free Wraps

Village Grind Coffee & Tea Co. | Oswego, IL

Located in the heart of downtown Oswego, the Village grind Coffee & Tea Co. is home to tasty treats, drink, and suitable for those accustom to the laptop life. Particularly, I like the atmosphere- I feel like I’ve been transported back to my Nashville trips. The warm and friendly welcome mixed with the environment, brings the Southern vibes to the Chicagoland. Over the summer I met a friend there a few times and I loved the option to sit in the screened in outdoor area. We weren’t swatting bees and other critters away while trying to catch up- instead, we were able to bask in the sunshine and relax while enjoying a cup of tea/ coffee.

What to order:

  • Ice Coffee

  • Gluten- Free Muffin

What is your favorite coffee shop? Tell me in the comments!

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