2020 GUIDE TO SEACOAST COFFEE SHOPS!
Here on the Seacoast, we are beyond fortunate to host a wonderful array of coffee shops and cafés. From Kennebunk to Kittery, Portsmouth to Newmarket, we’ve curated a list of fabulous local spots that always keep the coffee flowing, the atmosphere welcoming, and the treats tasty!
SOUTHERN NH COFFEE SHOPS
Coffee shops we love in downtown Portsmouth, NH!
BOOK & BAR | Portsmouth, NH
Nestled in the heart of downtown Portsmouth is a welcoming, historic, and oh-so-cozy café-meets-bookshop-meets-music-venue called Book & Bar!
Visit this cute Portsmouth establishment to enjoy your morning coffee beverage (featuring espresso beverages of your dreams!) while reading a book on the couches in the corner, where the light pours through the windows. Perhaps you’ll find yourself browsing the bookshelves of this laid-back literary salon that’s filled from top to bottom with classic novels, cookbooks, and everything in between (all 50-70% off the back cover price!!). And don’t be surprised if you just happen to stay through lunch—enjoy a sandwich, salad, chocolate chip cookie, or delightful cup of tea!
Return to Book & Bar in the evening for a local beer, glass of wine, or festive cocktail while mingling with friends, browsing the books with a bevvie in hand, playing a few games of chess, or enjoying some live music, poetry, or other events offered at Book & Bar!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Book & Bar…
- Book & Bar is a place where all ages feel welcome and come together—there is something for everyone to enjoy, whether you’re catching up with friends, enjoying quiet time alone, or hopping on your laptop to complete some work.
- Book & Bar hosts Open Mic Night every Wednesday at 7pm! The local talent who show up for an impromptu evening of songs is truly incredible.
- The building that Book & Bar calls home is one of the oldest buildings in Portsmouth. With an umbrella-clad patio come summer, and comfy couches looking out to the street during snowy winter evenings, Book & Bar is a great place to sit back, relax, and watch the world go by…
THE ELEPHANTINE BAKERY | Portsmouth, NH
European café meets historic Portsmouth at the oh-so quaint The Elephantine Bakery! Nestled along the brick-lined pathway of Commercial Alley, Elephantine is a happy respite serving artisanal coffee, espresso beverages, freshly-baked breads, and delicious pastries!
You can expect top-quality ingredients and flavors here, as the team puts so much care into its offerings, and Sherif, owner, and head bread baker, studied his art in the bread capital of the world—Paris!! A community gathering place all year long, this artisanal bakeshop is perfectly conducive to meeting with friends at the outdoor café tables come summer, and nibbling on a leisurely lunch (with a sweet treat and latte of course!) indoors come winter.
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT The Elephantine Bakery…
- The Elephantine Team is now taking orders for Thanksgiving!! Buttery dinner rolls, fine apple tarts, and olive oil and sea salt fougasse will be making their way to the ovens soon!
- Have you ever tasted an espresso tonic? This combination of espresso, tonic water, and orange is a unique offering we can’t wait to try!
- We’re wild about the s’mores bars!!
WHITE HERON TEA & COFFEE | Portsmouth, NH
What’s not to love about White Heron Tea & Coffee?? Located in Portsmouth’s hip and happening West End neighborhood, White Heron is a locally-focused café serving organic coffee, handmade tea (we loooove the chai), breakfast sandwiches (our fave!), soups, rice bowls, baked vegan donuts, and many more tasty treats and healthy dishes.
Take a peek at their menu to get your tastebuds excited!
Throughout New England’s four distinct seasons, White Heron switches up its beverage menu to offer seasonal selections using all-natural ingredients. Some of our favorites include the Apple Chai-der, Gingerbread Latte, Lavender Matcha Latte, and Lemon Turmeric Elixir, among many other creative hot and iced options.
A great place to catch up with friends, order lunch to-go, or pull out your laptop and get some serious work done, White Heron has ample seating, complimentary parking, and is a friendly spot to visit year-round!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT White Heron Tea & Coffee…
- If you’re on the fly, order breakfast or lunch online!
- White Heron’s tea can be found at many New England cafés (YAY LOCAL!). If White Heron’s Portsmouth location is a little bit far, but you love the taste of their coffee and tea, you can now order products online!
- Did you know that White Heron recently expanded its doors and selection to now offer records and tea-related products?? Next time you’re in, be sure to visit Tea Shop Records on the right side of the building!
CAFFE KILIM & MARKET | Portsmouth, NH
For 27 years and counting, Caffe Kilim has been fueling the Seacoast with its tasty Turkish coffee and top-notch customer service. A family business located in Portsmouth’s West End (just three blocks from downtown Portsmouth), Caffe Kilim is an artistic espresso bar, kilim gallery, ethnic market, and hip hangout that’s adored by locals.
Decades of serving the Portsmouth community has made this gathering space a staple in the Seacoast coffee world. In addition to offering handcrafted espresso drinks and freshly brewed Turkish coffee, Caffe Kilim also serves frappes, organic teas, Italian sodas, baked snacks, fresh baklava, and genuine Turkish delight (our mouths are watering!!).
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Caffe Kilim…
- Located next door to the café, and in the same building, is Kilim Market—a specialty shop full of gourmet Mediterranean foods (think cheeses, jellies, spreads, pasta, nuts, sweets, and snacks), as well as hand-woven rugs, kilim pillows, and Turkish cotton towels!
- If you find yourself downtown during a snowstorm, and in need of coffee, Caffe Kilim is most definitely a place we can count on for being open in any kind of weather! And on Thanksgiving morning too!
Just a hop, skip, and a jump from Portsmouth…
LA MULITA COFFEE ROASTERY | Rye, NH
Welcome to one of the Seacoast’s newest coffee roastery — La Mulita Coffee!! Located on Sagamore Road in Rye, New Hampshire, and just minutes from downtown Portsmouth, La Mulita is a wonderful spot to learn, taste and enjoy freshly roasted Colombian coffee. La Mulita Coffee was created by owner and longtime coffee enthusiast Max Pruna a Colombia native, and coffee drinker since the age of six! Max’s years of passion for coffee prompted him to open his own roastery in Rye in September 16, 2019.
By brewing freshly-roasted coffee every weekday, and by offering guests beautifully-packaged beans to roast at home, Max invites us to indulge in a medium to light roasted coffee experience where you can meet the fruity, honey, chocolate-y taste nuances of his roasting process. When you visit, be sure to ask Max about what you’re sipping—he would love to share his vast knowledge with you!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT La Mulita…
- La Mulita Coffee Roasters is open 7am-1pm, Monday through Friday.
- You can purchase coffee and La Mulita merch online!
CRACKSKULL’S COFFEE & BOOKS| Newmarket, NH
Java, mojo, bean juice, black gold…whatever you crave for your daily fix, Crackskull’s Coffee & Books has you covered! All of the coffee served at this Newmarket cafe is freshly-roasted and purchased locally from Port City Coffee Roasters in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. They offer three blends and flavors of hot coffee every day, along with a decaffeinated coffee option as well. For our iced coffee fans out there, Crackskull’s serves regular, french vanilla, hazelnut, and decaf, iced coffee, and a special flavor of the day!
If you’re looking for a walk on the wild side, Crackskull’s offers a plethora of tempting beverages from espresso and lattes, to mudslide mochas and caramel spiced cider! Hot chocolate, red eyes, macchiato, breve, Italian soda, chai chillers, iced lattes, green tea… the list of beverage options goes on and on!
Once you have your coffee fix, it’s time to enjoy the other amenities Crackskull’s offers— baked goods, books, and events. Cheers to caffeine and community!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Crackskull’s…
- Michelle and the Crackskull’s team pride themselves on offering a unique variety of books at their downtown Newmarket shop. Sip on a bev, browse the shelves of books, and pop by with books you would like to sell or donate—no appointment necessary!
- Crackskull’s is open 7 days a week from early to late!
- On the first Tuesday of each month (from 6:30-8pm), Crackskull’s hosts an event called “Prose, Poetry, and All Things Made of Words”!
LANEY & LU | Exeter, New Hampshire
If you’re looking for unique flavors and healthy, seasonal beverages, Laney & Lu is the place to visit! In the heart of downtown Exeter, tucked just steps away from the main street, is a small, cozy café with tables indoors and out. Come for a meal, meet with friends, or take your hot or cold beverage with you on your route to work or while strolling downtown!
Some of the most popular beverages on Laney & Lu’s menu are the transformational lattes, which are all made with the highest-quality, locally-sourced ingredients available. And they are packed full of superfoods that offer healing and preventative properties. Best of all? They taste amazing too!! Our favorite? The Iced Turmeric Latte with almond milk—the flavor is so there, and it tastes like nothing we’ve ever had before! Other unique options include the Maca Matcha LatteTea Forte, the Hot Cacaoraw Cocoa, and the Superfood Mushroom Latte, among others.
If a traditional cup of joe is more your style, Laney & Lu offers plenty of coffee and tea options—americanos, cappuccinos, lattes, and drip coffees are always available with regular or alternative milks.
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Laney & Lu…
- In addition to offering tasty bevs, Laney & Lu serves amazingly delicious healthy foods! We love the smoothies, acai bowls, egg sandwiches, muffins, sweet potato brownies…pretty much everything!
- Did you know you can order online??
SOUTHERN MAINE COFFEE SHOPS
LIL’S CAFÉ | Kittery, ME
Step inside Lil’s Café in the heart of Kittery’s Wallingford Square, and you’ll immediately be welcomed by a beautiful display of freshly-baked pastries, muffins, cookies, breads, and Lil’s famous crullers (which will practically beg you to devour them before you sit down). Once you select your treat (or sandwich, soup, or salad—all extraordinarily tasty!), it’s time to enjoy a beautiful cup of craft coffee!
Lil’s sources its coffee from Tandem Coffee Roasters in nearby Portland, Maine (YAY LOCAL!) and offers a large selection of craft espresso beverages, seasonal lattes (we’re looking at you, pumpkin spice!), and loose-leaf, organic teas sourced from Tempest in a Teapot in Stonington, Maine, and Harney & Sons!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Lil’s Café…
- All baked goods are made in-house and from scratch daily (sometimes even a few times per day!)
- Lil’s Café is a great spot to meet friends or catch up on some work—seating indoors and outside is aplenty! They are open for breakfast, lunch, and all-day coffee runs 7 days a week.
- Did you know they have a record shop inside??
- Team members at Lil’s always greet customers with a friendly smile—hospitality is at the top of the agenda here!
- Do you work at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard? If so, show your badge and enjoy 10% off your purchase!
- Lil’s is super involved in the Seacoast community (as is its sister restaurant Bob’s Clam Hut), supporting many community organizations and events.
THE CENTRAL BEAN & BAKERY | York, ME
Tucked away in York, Maine’s Long Sands Plaza, The Central Bean & Bakery is a cozy, light-filled spot where you can enjoy sipping your morning cup of joe, tasting a freshly-baked pastry (or two!), doing a little bit of work, and catching up with friends!
This family-owned café was founded in 2017, and specializes in serving freshly-roasted George Howell Coffee and espresso (Boston based!), and decadent pastries that are baked in-house daily. Just when you think this hidden gem couldn’t get any better, they also serve yummy breakfast toasts, mouth-watering egg sammies, soups, and local beer and wine!
Be sure to check out The Central Bean & Bakery’s calendar, as they host some pretty fun events and workshops throughout the year. A recurring event that has us begging to go is the Wine & Watercolor nights!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT The Central Bean & Bakery…
- Did you know The Central Bean & Bakery has a sister restaurant?? The Central is located right next door to the bakery/coffee shop and serves dinner throughout the year!
- We love that The Central Bean & Bakery serves White Heron Tea that’s blended just a few miles south in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Can we get a power clap for locals supporting locals??
- Great news—we can now order custom cakes for special occasions or just because!!
BACKYARD COFFEEHOUSE & EATERY | Ogunquit, ME
Seven years ago, something magical arrived in beautiful Ogunquit, Maine—that special place is called Backyard Coffeehouse & Eatery located just steps away from the hustle and bustle of Shore Road. In a beautiful, barn-like building, you’ll be welcomed by plenty of tables (indoor and out!), a stunning display of baked goods (we go craaaazy for the strawberry biscuits!!), healthy sandwiches—named after streets in Ogunquit—for breakfast and lunch, and of course—COFFEE!
In addition to offering locally-roasted coffee from Bard in Portland, Maine (another place we adore), Backyard serves flavorful espresso beverages, MEM loose leaf tea, and a rather delicious iced matcha latte if we do say so ourselves! As soon as it’s 5 o’clock somewhere, Backyard serves beer and wine as well! So sit back and relax on a sunny Ogunquit morning, or take some sammies to the beach for some midday fuel!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Backyard Coffeehouse & Eatery…
- Backyard source ingredients locally whenever possible—freshly-roasted coffee from Bard, and tasty bagels from Rose Foods (also from Portland, Maine)! All spreads, baked goods, and sandwiches are made in-house daily!
- Backyard pays attention to offering tasty options to people with a variety of diets—from their alternative milk offerings to gluten-free bread options, vegan pastries to baked goods—there is so much to enjoy!
- Backyard Coffeehouse & Eatery is a SEASONAL destination open from April through October!
COFFEE ROASTERS OF THE KENNEBUNKS | Kennebunk, ME
Located in a sweet, historic building in charming Kennebunk, Maine you’ll find Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks—a local café and roastery that’s home to the $1 cup of coffee!! Whether you’re popping in and out for coffee on the go, meeting up with friends for coffee and a pastry, or bringing bags of freshly-roasted beans home to brew yourself, Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks offers something for every kind of coffee enthusiast! And for all of us iced coffee and cold brew fans, this local institution goes the extra mile— offering coffee ice cubes in chilled bevvies!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks…
- Yes indeed, you read that correctly—Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks serves 12-ounce cups of coffee for only ONE DOLLAR!!!
- All of Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks’ beans are roasted in-house on a 100+-year-old roasting machine that’s been in owner Sandra’s family for generations.
- Coffee Roasters of the Kennebunks also sells cute retail items, including imported olive oils and balsamic vinegars! Bring your bottles back for refilling and save $2 each time you fuel up!
BOULANGERIE, A PROPER BAKERY | Kennebunk, Maine
In a large red 1900s barn tucked just behind the pavilion in downtown Kennebunk, Maine is a warm, and welcoming spot where bread rises and bakes in the dark of morning. Fresh, local coffee starts brewing in the wee hours, and the sound of the espresso machine creates a tiny hum in this cozy bakery…
Welcome to Boulangerie, A Proper Bakery!
Rise to the smell of baking bread wafting into town on your way to Boulangerie, A Proper Bakery and begin your day sipping on a flavorful latte, nibbling on sweet pastries, and feeling nourished enjoying yummy sandwiches made with locally-sourced ingredients. Warm-up and catch up with friends on the couches inside as the snow falls, or sit on the outdoor patio on a sunny morning during the summer! This year-round bakery has so much to offer!
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Boulangerie, A Proper Bakery…
- Boulangerie is committed to supporting Maine farmers and local businesses—from the eggs in the dough, to the cheese in the sandwiches, owners Amy and Zachary put an emphasis on sourcing ingredients locally—we love this!!
- Boulangerie is perfectly located for a downtown stroll through Kennebunk. Spend your winter afternoon skating at the Kennebunk town rink next door and grab a tasty hot chocolate to warm up after.
- Boulagerie generously gives back to the Seacoast community on a daily basis. All unsold bread is donated to food pantries, and profits from recyclables are given to local animal shelters.
- We can’t get enough of the homemade apple turnovers—they’re life-changing!!
DOCK SQUARE COFFEE HOUSE | Kennebunkport, ME
In the heart of Dock Square, in oh-so-quaint Kennebunkport, is a coffee shop we know and love—Dock Square Coffee House!! This historic and charming café sits right on top of the river boasting beautiful views in all kinds of weather, while the entrance looks out to the hustle and bustle of the town.
In the mornings (from the spring through Kennebunkport’s annual Christmas Prelude in December), Dock Square Coffee House fuels Kennebunkport with gourmet coffee, fresh espresso drinks, teas, and pastries. They also serve alternative milks which we love!
Cozy up inside for a leisurely visit or enjoy your coffee to go. Stroll around the scenic surroundings as you pop into local shops and enjoy everything this sweet town has to offer…
A FEW FUN FACTS TO KNOW ABOUT Dock Square Coffee House…
- One hour prior to closing each day, Dock Square Coffee House’s baked goods are 50% off—what a treat!
- Stay tuned on social media for updated opening hours throughout the year—they may fluctuate, depending on the season, and for Christmas Prelude!
What’s your favorite coffee shop in the Seacoast??
Drop us a line and share your favorite spot and what you like to get there—if we haven’t tried it, we’d love to try it too!