Barista making coffee in Alexandria cafe

Cafes in Old Town Alexandria: 16 Best Coffee Shops (From a Local!)

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Looking for the best cafes and coffee shops in Old Town Alexandria Virginia?

Are you a fan of coffee? Do you love spending your mornings at cozy coffee shops with a warm cup of java?

If so, Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, is the perfect destination for you. This beautiful historic district is home to a vibrant coffee scene with independent cafes and shops perfect for travelers.

But first, do you have these items for your trip to Alexandria?

Rental Car: I recommend for the cheapest prices!
ActivitiesViator is my favorite resource to book fun tours and day trips! has a variety of hotels, but also rentals and b&bs

From innovative blends to cozy catch-up spots, Alexandria’s coffee scene has everything to offer. With so many options in the area, it can be overwhelming to choose which ones to visit.

I’m an Alexandria resident and happy to share the best cafes and coffee in Old Town!

Table of Contents:
Best Cafes for Coffee Lovers
1. Misha’s Coffee
2. Turkish Coffee Lady
3. Via Volcan
Best Cafes for Working
4. Mae’s Market and Cafe
5. South Block
6. ESP Tea and Coffee
Best Cafes for Breakfast
7. For Five Coffee Roasters
8. Fontaine
9. Cafe Du Soleil
Best Cafes for Grab and Go
10. Uptowner
11. Lori’s Table
Best Cafes for a Sweet Tooth
12. Dolci Gelati
13. Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee
14. Fresh Baguette
Best Cafes for an Afternoon with Friends
15. Mount Purrnon Cat Cafe and Wine Bar
16. Lady Camellia
Best Places to Stay
Best Things to Do

Mount Vernon Tour
Old Town Food Tour
Ghost Tour
FAQs: Cafes in Old Town Alexandria

Best Cafes and Coffeeshops in Old Town Alexandria

Alexandria Virginia has some of the best independently owned cafes and coffee shops. From latte art to artisan tarts, there is a cafe for everyone!

Best Cafes For Coffee Lovers

These are my top picks for the best quality coffee in Old Town Alexandria. Coffee takes center stage in these cafes. Enjoy French press, drip, espressos, and more!

Misha's storefront on King Street Alexandria
Misha’s @ Instagram

1. Misha’s Coffee

917 King Street

Misha’s Coffee has 25 types of coffee beans, single-origin, blends, and roasts, displayed in huge glass jars. The coffee can be prepared for you to drink using the “pour-over” or “French press” method.

The variety changes over time, and there are always three types of coffee readily available: Caravan (a medium roast), Route 66 (a French roast), and Van Winkle decaf (a French roast). If you want coffee beans, they are priced per pound, and the price is on the jar label. They can grind it for you too.

During peak hours, the lines at Misha’s Coffee Shop can extend to the door, but don’t let that deter you. The wait is worth it for one of the best coffee shops in Old Town!

Misha’s Coffee Shop provides a decent amount of outdoor seating at its King Street location, and both the Prince and King St. shops have indoor seating with a cool ambiance. The Prince St. location is a bit more quaint and smaller, but the drinks are fantastic at both spots.

One drink that you should try out when you visit Misha’s Coffee Shop is the London fog latte, which comes with lavender syrup. They offer hot and cold coffees, teas, hot cocoa, apple cider, Arnold Palmers, pastries, sweet breads, and muffins.

Turkish coffee cups on decorative rug

2. Turkish Coffee Lady

1001 King Street

This hidden gem offers a rich cultural experience with its mouth-watering Mediterranean desserts, pastries, savory snacks, and traditional Turkish coffee blends that will make you feel like you are sitting in a bazaar in Istanbul.

Turkish coffee is brewed in a small brass pot called a cezve, and the grounds are very fine, almost like a powder. The result is a rich, bold, and unfiltered brew that is full of flavor and aroma. At Turkish Coffee Lady, they have a wide selection of Turkish coffee blends, and you can even sample them before you order.

If you are a foodie, you will also love Turkish Coffee Lady’s delicious pastries, Mediterranean snacks, and Turkish delights. You can try savory options like cheese pies, spinach and feta rolls, or sweet treats like baklava with different nuts and flavors, petit fours, and various Turkish delights.

It’s a cozy atmosphere with a Middle Eastern decor and music. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable, and they take the time to explain the coffee-making process and its cultural significance. You can also buy some Turkish tea sets, trinkets, and souvenirs to take home, so you can recreate the experience.

The seating area is very small so I’d recommend Turkish Coffee Lady for a grab-and-go experience!

Coffee beans from cafe Via Volcan in Old Town Alexandria

3. Via Volcan

110 S West Street

If you’re a coffee lover searching for a hidden gem in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, pay a visit to Via Volcan. From their farm in Panama, Via Volcan provides its customers with single-origin coffee, which is sure to make you a regular. The drink menu is straightforward, featuring the basics like pour-overs, cappuccinos, and lattes.

They have the high-quality workhorse medium roast, which is used to make the majority of the coffee drinks served, and their premium light roast Geisha, which is only available in beans to take home or as pour-over.

If you’re looking for a spot to work or relax, Via Volcan may not be the best choice. The space is small and not ideal for an extended stay or those wanting to eat. However, if you’re in a hurry, this coffee shop is your best bet. You can grab a quick cup of coffee and be on your way in no time.

Best Coffee Shops for Working

These cafes have ample space for hours in front of your laptop and provide ample coffee and sustenance to keep your brain cells working.

Latte art

4. Mae’s Market and Cafe

277 S Washington

Mae’s Market and Cafe is a cute and spacious coffee shop just south of Old Town. In addition to a varied coffee menu, Mae’s also offers quiches, sandwiches and soups. Not to mention, the cafe makes its chocolate syrup – it adds an extra oomph to your espresso-based drinks.

One of the standout features of Mae’s Market and Cafe is the fantastic seating area it provides. There is ample seating inside and outside, as well as a bar in the back that is open later in the day.

With its spacious, bright space and fantastic coffee, it’s easy to settle in and be productive. There is a small market area with unique snacks for purchase.

Green juice with herbs

5. South Block

106 N Lee St

South Block Cafe is more than just a cafe, it’s a community where love and passion are spread, and healthy living is promoted. South Block Cafe’s Acai bowls are a standout. They use wholesome ingredients that burst with flavor.

Along with Acai bowls, the menu offers an array of fruit bowls and toasts. If you’re in the mood for a caffeine fix, their full espresso menu will satisfy your needs.

One thing that sets South Block Cafe apart is the space they offer. With plenty of seating options, you can sit, eat, and work. The cafe operates out of an old warehouse, and the bright and inviting space is covered in murals and art. It makes the perfect place to snap an Instagram photo!

A must-visit for those seeking a healthy cafe and an alternative to traditional pastries.

Latte, waffle and laptop.
ESP Tea and Coffee @ Instagram

6. ESP Tea and Coffee

1012 King Street

ESP Tea and Coffee is relaxed and comfortable coffee shop, creating a welcoming environment for everyone. Their menu includes unique flavors such as lavender, honey, and rosemary latte. They also offer 58 types of tea on their menu, giving you plenty of choices.

The coffee shop has a cute 70s basement interior that’s filled with local artist’s artwork and stickers. Every inch of the coffee shop is covered in art, making it a calming and visually pleasant space.

They have a variety of pies/quiches that appear to be homemade, making it an excellent spot to grab a quick bite to eat. The croissant waffle is a must-try as it’s crispy and perfect for a sweet treat.

Every Sunday, ESP Tea and Coffee has an open mic event, making it a great opportunity to hear local artists’ performances while enjoying your coffee break. The coffee shop is a popular spot, making it a perfect place to spend an afternoon or a few hours catching up on work while sipping on a beverage.

Best Cafes for Breakfast

Feeler more hungry than a pastry and coffee? Check out these spots for a casual, filling breakfast from egg sandwiches to acai bowls.

Colorful coffee
For Five @ Instagram

7. For Five Coffee Roasters

1800C Diagonal Road

Conveniently located near the Metro and VTA/Amtrak, Five Coffee Roasters is easy to access for travelers looking for a caffeine boost or a quick bite. The coffee shop offers a wide range of freshly baked goods, from mouth-watering cookies to moist muffins, which are perfect to pair with your favorite espresso.

You can also enjoy a flavorful breakfast or lunch dish inspired by Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines. The pecan French toast and the Manhasset sandwich are some of the best options on the menu and my personal favorites.

It’s fair to say that Five Coffee Roasters is not the most affordable coffee shop in the area, but the quality of their coffee, and food is absolutely worth the price.

freshly baked crosissants

8. Fontaine

119 South Royal

If you’re looking for a cozy French café in the heart of Alexandria, Fontaine Cafe and Creperie is the place to be. You can enjoy brunch on the weekends and sit outside to appreciate the beautiful views of Alexandria. This café is ideal for a lunch date or a coffee break with friends.

Unlike other coffee shops, Fontaine Caffe and Creperie offers table service, making the overall experience much better. You can kick back in your chair, unwind with a cup of coffee (or glass of wine), and relish the café’s ambiance.

Fontaine Caffe and Creperie offers an extensive menu that features savory dishes like steak frites, roasted trout, pate, and pan-seared salmon. An absolute specialty of this café is their savory crêpes, made with buckwheat flour, which are gluten-free, and served in the style of Brittany, France.

One can also indulge in their widely famous dessert crêpes. Their sweet crêpes are equally popular as their savory ones. These light and fluffy crepes are filled with fresh fruits like raspberries, strawberries, and whipped cream.

Varied plates of brunch foods
Cafe Du Soleil @ Instagram

9. Cafe Du Soleil

215 S Union

If you’re looking for a cozy coffee shop that’s just a short walk from the water and has plenty of street parking, look no further than Cafe Du Soleil. This quaint coffee shop not only offers delicious drinks and savory crepes, but its brick walls and calm ambience make Cafe Du Soleil one of the best cafes in Old Town Alexandria.

First and foremost, Cafe Du Soleil offers excellent food and drinks. As mentioned before, their savory crepes stuffed with prosciutto, tomato, and just the right amount of cheese are out of this world. The butternut squash bisque is also a must-try.

Additionally, their coffee is excellent, with every type of milk alternative available, including coconut milk. From silky and strong espresso to soft White Mocha, you can’t go wrong with their coffee. And if you have a sweet tooth, be sure to try their beignets. There are also smoothies, teas, and juices available.

Cafe Du Soleil is self-service and open seating. You can order your food and drinks at the counter and sit wherever you’d like, whether it be at a table, chair, or extended booth/wall seating with electric plugs for those who need to use it as a workspace.

The space is relaxed and warm; They even play traditional jazz standards, adding to the warm and non-pretentious ambiance. The cafe gives off a “bookstore feel”, making it a great spot for coffee shop meetings or a spot to read a book solo.

Best Cafes for Grab and Go Breakfast

Swing by for a classic breakfast sandwich or grab your breakfast burrito to go! These cafes are perfect for quick breakfast before walking around Old Town.

Breakfast sandwich from cafe in Old Town Alexandria

10. Uptowner Cafe

1609 King Street

Uptowner Cafe may not be a huge coffee shop, but it has everything you need to start your day off on the right foot. The breakfast sandwiches are definitely worth a try, especially the egg and cheese one, which is a classic favorite. Along with the sandwiches, they also offer a variety of pastries that pair perfectly with coffee.

The location couldn’t be more perfect, as it’s conveniently located across the street from the Kimpton Lorien Hotel and the Hyatt Centric. It’s an excellent option if you’re looking for a quick and easy breakfast bite while avoiding paying a lot more to eat at a sit-down or hotel restaurant.

The clean and bright space is accompanied by a few tables and chairs, with some seats along the window.

Breakfast sandwich

11. Lori’s Table

1028 King Street

If you’re visiting Old Town Alexandria, make sure to stop by Lori’s Table, a small family-owned coffee shop that has been serving delicious breakfast, baked goods, espresso drinks, and much more for years.

You can order your favorite cappuccino, latte, or mocha, or even try their refreshing Prosecco if you’re in the mood for a bubbly drink. They have a variety of baked goods to choose from, including muffins, croissants, scones, and cakes, made fresh every day.

Their breakfast menu is small but a crowd-pleaser, with options like the classic egg sandwich, avocado toast, and waffles. If you’re in the mood for something savory, try their famous Cajun Munchwrap, filled with eggs, cheese, peppers, onions, and bacon. You won’t regret it!

And if you’re on the go, they have a wide selection of grab-and-go sandwiches, salads, and soups to take with you. On sunny days, they have a few tables set up outside the shop, where you can enjoy your coffee. Best for a quick breakfast or for grab-and-go!

Best Cafes for a Sweet Tooth

Enjoy your coffee with sweets! Come hungry for this selection of pastries, tarts, or even gelato!

Gelato in a coffee cup

12. Dolci Gelati

107 N Fairfax Street

Although it’s known for its artisanal small-batch gelato, this charming coffee and gelato shop offers fresh pastries, hearty breakfast sandwiches and a variety of coffee-based drinks. And let’s be real, nothing beats a fresh croissant with a warm cup of coffee.

Now, on to the main attraction – the gelato. Dolci Gelati’s gelato is made in small batches, which means you’re guaranteed fresh, high-quality gelato every time you visit. With flavors like salted caramel, mint chocolate chip, and seasonal options like apple cider, there’s a flavor for every taste preference.

Aside from the delicious food and drinks, Dolci Gelati also has a great atmosphere. The cafe is quiet and relaxed, making it the perfect spot to sit and read a book or catch up with friends.

And, with only eight tables, you’ll never feel overcrowded or rushed. The restaurant is located right across the street from City Hall in Alexandria.

Lily's Chocolate and Coffee's pink decor
Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee @ Instagram

13. Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee

631 King Street

Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee is a cute “insta-worthy” cafe with pastel-colored walls, hanging plants, and quirky accents. Aside from the aesthetics, Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee is also known for its wide selection of drinks. Whether you’re a die-hard coffee drinker or prefer tea, you’ll find something to suit your taste.

Some of the fan favorites include the black tea with cardamom, honey cinnamon latte, and Turkish coffee. They also offer various milk alternatives, and their unique syrups add a twist to the classic drinks.

Of course, no coffee shop is complete without food. Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee also has a selection of sandwiches and cakes, but what sets them apart is their Middleastern dessert Lockma. These tiny donut holes are crisp on the outside, fluffy on the inside, and generously coated with sugar syrup and sesame seeds.

Lily’s Chocolate and Coffee is a small business owned by a family who is passionate about food and drink. You’ll also find comfortable seating, perfect for lounging with a laptop or a book, and plenty of natural light that creates a cozy and welcoming atmosphere.

Strawberries tarts

14. Fresh Baguette

1101 King Street

Fresh Baguette has an impressive selection of bakery items that range from almond croissants and mini tarts to pan au chocolate and savory pastries. The standout item at Fresh Baguette is their baguettes. They are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and perfect for a breakfast sandwich. A bread/pastry lovers’ dream!

The coffee at Fresh Baguette is Peet’s coffee, which is a dark roast blend that has a full-bodied flavor and no bitterness.

The atmosphere at Fresh Baguette is lovely. It is a small shop that is well-organized and welcoming. The bakery is a hub for locals and tourists alike, which creates a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Best Cafes for an Afternoon with Friends

These cafes are a unique experience- perfect for catching up with friends! Enjoy a casual afternoon with cats or put on your formal wear for an afternoon tea.

Cat laying down

15. Mount Purrnon Cat Cafe and Wine Bar

109 S Alfred Street

Are you a cat lover looking to indulge in some feline therapy while enjoying a delicious cup of coffee or a glass of wine? Mount Purrnon Cat Cafe + Wine Bar is not your typical café – it’s a unique space where you can hang out with cats, grab a bite to eat, and enjoy a selection of beverages.

The upstairs cat lounge is home to a variety of cats waiting for their forever homes – and you’re invited to visit and play with them! Whether you’re looking to telework, play games, or chat with friends, the lounge offers a cozy and relaxing atmosphere.

The downstairs café area offers a range of delicious sandwiches, salads, cookies, and coffee. But what sets this place apart is its impressive selection of wines, beers, and ciders.

There are also free Wi-Fi and day/monthly passes for those who wish to telework from the cat café! Mount Purrnon Cat Cafe + Wine Bar also hosts a variety of special events, such as wine tastings, trivia nights, tea parties, ghost story nights, and more.

The hourly fees for the cat area enable Mount Purrnon to provide a safe, comfortable, and caring environment for its furry residents. This includes food, litter, and 24/7 care until they are adopted. The cost to visit with the cats for an hour is $20 for adults and $15 for kids aged 5-12.

Teacups and decorative plates in cafe in Old Town Alexandria.

16. Lady Camellia

229 Strand Street

Lady Camellia is an upscale tea experience reminiscent of British high tea. Overlooking the waterfront in Old Town, the cafe is cozy yet elegant.

The tea extensive list provides something for everyone, and each option is carefully brewed and served to perfection. During my visit, we selected four unique blends, and each was exceptional. The flavors were well balanced and made for a delightful experience.

The meals at Lady Camellia are equally impressive. Whether you’re in the mood for tea sandwiches or scones, the options are extensive. My favorite part of the meal was trying the different macaron flavors, which were all incredibly delectable.

The staff was also attentive, making sure that we had everything we needed to make our visit memorable. The parking lot was conveniently located across the street, providing easy access to the waterfront.

The ambiance is perfect, with soft classical music playing in the background creating a pleasant environment. The low-volume conversations add to the overall relaxing atmosphere, making it perfect for travelers looking to take a break and unwind.

Best Places to Stay in Old Town Alexandria

Best Things to Do in Old Town Alexandria

Alexandria’s historical streets allow for some of the best historic tours in the country. Check out where George Washington lived and hear some of the haunted stories of centuries past.

Mount Vernon, George Washington's house.

Tour Old Town and Mount Vernon

The Mount Vernon and Old Town Tour is the perfect way to start your journey back in time. Tour the historic multicolored streets of Old Town and head to Mount Vernon, the former home of George Washington.

You can tour the mansion and outbuildings, stroll through the gardens, and even watch reenactments of important historical events.

Don’t forget to visit the museum and education center to learn more about George Washington and his role in the founding of our country.

Click here to book your tour of Mount Vernon/Old Town!

Old Town Food Tour

This Alexandria Food Tour will stop at family-owned restaurants in the area, where you will taste the famous cuisines of Alexandria. During the tour, your expert guide will provide interesting historical facts as you stroll through cobblestone streets, soaking in Alexandria’s charm.

You will have a full meal, consisting of delicious seafood, Italian cuisine, fusion recipes, and hand-crafted desserts.

This history and culinary timeline will paint a picture of the region’s rich culture, making the tour more than just a food experience.

Click here to book your food tour in Old Town!

Old Town Ghost Tour

The Alexandria Ghost Tour is a must-do for this historic town! Your guide will lead you for approximately 1.5 hours and will take you through dark alleys and narrow streets of Old Town.

Your guide will stop at each haunted location and share spooky tales that made them some of the most haunted places in Alexandria.

The tour has a maximum limit of 15 people to keep it personal and unique. The small group size allows for an intimate and interactive experience. You’ll get the chance to ask questions and interact with your guide, who is an expert on the history of Alexandria.

Click here to book your ghost tour in Old Town!

FAQs: Cafes in Old Town Alexandria

Cafes are often a traveler’s destination spot for a quick bite or a cozy place to read or catch up on work. Alexandria VA is one town that’s worth the visit if you’re scouting for a relaxing ambiance and top-rated eateries.

Old Town Alexandria's historic streets

What is considered Old Town Alexandria?

Old Town is considered the historic cobblestone area along King Street in Alexandria VA. It extends from Jones Point Park along the southern waterfront to Oronoco Bay Park to the northern waterfront.

How to spend a day in Old Town Alexandria?

Start a day in one of Alexandria’s cafes, then head over to King Street to explore the various shops and historic houses. Head down to the waterfront to explore The Torpedo Factory, an art studio space. Spend the rest of your day exploring the various historic cobblestone streets, or head down to Jones Point Park.

What is the most beautiful street in Alexandria VA?

Captain’s Row is a preserved cobblestone street on the waterfront area of Prince Street. Snap of few pics of the historical homes and gorgeous stone street.

Wrap-up: Cafes in Alexandria, VA

Alexandria Old Town is brimming with cafes that are worth the visit. Whether you’re in the mood for freshly roasted coffee, artisanal pastry, or vegan options, the cafes in Alexandria have you covered. Old Town has some of the best coffee shops in the DC area.

From the unique ambiance to the local ingredients used in the meals, Alexandria VA’s cafes are guaranteed to leave an unforgettable memory of your visit to this charming, historic town.