NOTE: This is the 2021 list, to read the most recent 2022/2023 list, click here.
The 10 Best Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2021
Before we get started on the list of the best coffee shops in Vancouver 2021 I want to remind you all of a few things.
2021 has been better than 2020, no doubt. But let’s not forget that the staff in coffee shops have had two years of being on the front lines in a pandemic.
I’m not in any way insinuating you’re one of the nut bags they have to deal with. But remember they’ve dealt with hordes of them.
So I have an ask for 2022.
At some point this year, hopefully as soon as possible, I’d like you to tell a barista how much you care about them and the service they provide.
It can be as simple as a basic thank you, all the way up to a huge tip, if you can.
It doesn’t matter, just let them know you appreciate them.
OK with that out of the way, let’s get into the biggest event of the year next to the Oscars.
This is the list of the 10 best coffee shops in Vancouver 2021, as voted by the public.
This list is bought to you by Jelly Donut Events
If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the last 1-2 years it’s that working from home has been a bit of a challenge.
Personally, I’ve found that the dynamics in the teams I work in have totally changed on account of knowing that everyone is working in only their underpants.
Well, Jelly Donut Events has ya back for adding that spark back, with their awesome Virtual Team Building Events.
Take for example the coffee tasting event. Three coffees are sent to your door, then your group gets to sample them live on Zoom/Teams/etc, with a coffee expert host (transparency: I’m one of them).
Or how about a ‘Build your own Iced Lattes‘ event? Or a Coffee and Tea Tasting?
Head over to jellydonutevents.com to see the full lineup of events on offer.
Well, without further ado, here’s the list of the 10 best coffee shops in Vancouver 2021.
325 Cambie St, Vancouver
The pandemic saw Revolver cleverly switch to a window-only method of serving coffee. But 2021 was the year of them reopening their doors to the public!
You can expect a huge selection of impeccably created coffee, some light sweet treats (their coffee cake is honestly the best I’ve ever had) and a chic and a stylish NYC-themed indoor space.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: I’m all about the pour overs at Revolver. However, when I’m feeling like it, their macchiatos are truly something special.
Click here to read my Revolver Coffee Review
9. Veille Coffee
2547 Montvue Ave, Abbotsford, BC V2S 3V2
View this post on Instagram
Veille already placed number 3 on the Best New Coffee Shops of 2021 list, so it’s a joy to see them in here too.
Vielle is actually just one person, Aimerance, operating out of a coffee van in Abbotsford!
You can expect espresso and filter coffee by way of Road Coffee Roasters, a friendly and welcoming experience and some killer treats.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Try their “one coffee done three ways” or “three coffees done one way” for a truly unique experience.
8. Modus Coffee Roasters
112 W Broadway, Vancouver
2021 saw Modus truly solidify themselves as one of the best brunch destinations in the city.
Of course, their coffee game is still as strong as ever, with a focus on lighter and bright coffee. But we also saw the launch of their Coast roast, which is an astonishingly accessible coffee, as well as their beer collab with Studio Brewing.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: As much as I love Coast, a Modus experience for me is all about their LATIF or HIRO roasts. Always, always, always on pour over.
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Modus
Click here to read my Modus Coffee review
7. Smoking Gun Coffee
46168 Yale Rd #101, Chilliwack, BC V2T 0J6
On Siply – Soon!
Taking the 1st place in the Best New Coffee Shops 2021 award and 4th in the Best Coffee Roasters 2021 award, apparently just wasn’t enough for Smoking Gun!
You can expect a bright, airy and welcoming venue, with a great selection of house-roasted coffee. Their bean selection ranges from darker and accessible, all the way to light and bright.
Food-wise they have a great selection of locally created pastries, as well as house-made sandwiches. These are all served up by some incredibly friendly and talented staff.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Their Tanzania on filter was a bloody revelation. But if you can snag the owner, Brandon, get him to pour you a fancy latte art cladden milk drink.
6. Harken Coffee
338 Powell St, Vancouver
Harken is what happens when you mix a team of preposterously skilled coffee nerds and give them a big fat roaster to play with!
The end result is a sleek and well-designed coffee shop with a roasting program that creates some truly mind-blowing coffee.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: . Their head roaster, Stacey, seems to have the magic touch with fermenty flavours. So if there’s a natural process coffee on bar, I always favour that on pour over. That being said, their house-made alt-milk makes a wildly unique cortado.
Click here for my review of Harken.
5. Craft Cafe
960 Quayside Dr Unit 115, New Westminster
In 2020 I had a cup of coffee in Craft Cafe (a Panama Geisha from Gardelli) that still goes down as one of the top 3 cups of my life.
The venue is bright, welcoming and has a huge patio by the water for the summer months.
Their coffee selection is so vast that you’d expect this cafe to be in Gastown. But it’s not, it’s in New West!
Food wise, they have some of the most delicious breakfast sandwiches and grilled cheeses I’ve ever stuffed into my greedy face hole.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Craft often have very high end coffee available at extremely reasonable prices. Their stance is that it’s a great opportunity to get amazing coffee into peoples bellies without the crazy price tag. For that reason, ask the barista for a recommendation, then sit back and enjoy the ride (with a Canele of course).
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Craft Cafe
Click here to read my review of Craft Cafe
4. Pallet Coffee Roasters
980 Howe St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1N9
2002 W Broadway, Vancouver, BC V6J 1Z4
3820 Oak St, Vancouver, BC V6H 2M5
1398 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC V5V 3E4
323 Semlin Dr, Vancouver, BC V5L 4H9
395 Alexander St, Vancouver, BC V6A 1C4
Arguably one of the most iconic coffee brands in Vancouver.
Pallet has six locations around Vancouver, as well as the eye wateringly beautiful Palate Kitchen. This cafe, by the way, scored a whopping 97% on my review last year.
I think my favourite location, however, is their HQ. It’s a sprawling warehouse/cafe/roastery, with the finer details created by my favourite interior designer, Alice D’Andrea.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: At HQ they often have a single-origin espresso on bar. At any other location hit me with a cortado. If I’m sitting in their downtown location, I’m always going to favour a pour over.
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Pallet
Click here to read my Pallet HQ review.
2525 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5T 3E5
577 Great Northern Way, Vancouver, BC V5T 1E1
151 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V6B 1H4
2021 saw Kafka’s move their entire roasting operation from the US into Canada. The result is that they’ve been able to refine their already great roasts and focus on working directly with farms to buy green beans.
They have three locations across Vancouver, with their Main Street location being one of the OG third wave coffee shops in the city.
At each location, you can expect fantastic pour over and espresso-based drinks. In summer they introduce cold brew drinks too.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: I have a real soft spot for the innovative design of their Gastown location. While I’m there, it’s always going to be a juicy, bergamot forward Ethiopian on pour over.
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Kafka’s
Click here to read my Kafka’s review
2. Prototype Coffee
883 E Hastings St, Vancouver
Prototype are the one coffee shop where I consistently have my mind and my taste buds blown. Every. Single. Visit.
From their innovative ways of steaming drinks (see recommendation below) to the fact they often have 15-ish different coffees available for you to try. Oh and if you like one, they’ll roast you a bag to order while you wait.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: Their steamed nitro cold brew is such a unique drink that my mind often can’t really process what I’m drinking, so definitely start with that! Their pour overs are always amazing, so I often ask the barista what their favourite is at the moment. When I leave, I always leave with a bottle of their Oatmilk Flat White.
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Prototype
Click here to read my Prototype Coffee review.
Interlude from The 10 Best New Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2021!
I mentioned earlier that this list is sponsored by Jelly Donut Events.
Given that you’ve made it this far in the list you’re no doubt a discerning coffee snob!
So I wanted to take the opportunity to tell you about their coffee tasting event, of which I’m one of the hosts.
You and your work team get sent a pack coffee kits, dial into Zoom then taste them all with a coffee expert.
You get to geek out about coffee, bond as a team and obviosuly get totally energized and hyped for the rest of the day.
Click here for more info on the best Virtual Coffee Tasting events on the planet.
OK, back to the list of The 10 Best New Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2021!
1. Nemesis Coffee
302 W Hastings St, Vancouver
101 Carrie Cates Ct #110, North Vancouver
555 Great Northern Way, Vancouver
To the surprise of no one, Nemesis reclaims the crown of the number 1 spot on The 10 Best Coffee Shops in Vancouver 2021 list.
Why is it not a surprise? Just look at the above photo. That is the coffee shop they opened this year.
Aint it pretty?
Their new GNW location is an absolute feast for the eyes. It merges possibly the most unique building shape I’ve ever seen, with impeccable interior design. But their Polygon and Gastown locations are not be downplayed either. Both are amazing.
The food and service program is, in my opinion, Michelin star quality.
From a coffee perspective, it’s all house-roasted and direct to farm sourced, with a focus on transparency and fair payments.
Honestly, you just have to go to experience it.
Vancouver Coffee Snob Recommendation: I always go for a pour over at any of their locations, with the Indian Ratnagiri being a real surprise of flavours. If I’m at GNW I’ll favour anything with duck in it for food. Polygon is always a to-go breakfast sando, to enjoy by the water.
Click here to use Siply to unlock the best pricing at Nemesis
Click here to read my Nemesis Gastown review or here to read my Nemesis Polygon review or here to read my Nemesis GNW review.
The final day of The Snobby awards! I’ve dubbed this “The Rest of the Snobbies”.
These are a, let’s face it, insane selection of ramblings, fresh from my ridiculous brain. All my own awards, no public vote involved.
There will be nods to friends, actual achievements, some feel good stuff and plenty of sarcasm.
If you want to be the first to know when this is available to read, pop your details into the form below and I’ll email you before it goes live on social meda.
To view the list of the 10 Best New Shops of 2021 click here or the list of the 10 Best Roasters 2021 click here.