One of my jobs is living in a hostel working as an assistant manager and it can get pretty crazy. It’s literally impossible to get my writing work done so I basically live at cafes near me so I’m not distracted by kids in banana suits shotgunning Medallas. (Yes, that just happened this week).
So, there’s pretty much one place that is my go to cafe and I spend most of my time sitting at the middle table against the wall (don’t you dare take my spot) drinking cups after cups of almond milk lattes. The neighborhood of Santurce is such a cool, trendy, dare I say “hipster,” area of San Juan and it always fills me with creativity. Between the amazing street-art and murals that dot the streets, the stylish boutiques that hold handmade jewelry from local artists, and the modern restaurants and bars, Santurce has it all. This neighborhood definitely has the best cafes that I’ve seen around San Juan. Most of them source their beans locally and they really take care of the process from whole bean to your pretty latte.
Here are the best cafes in the neighborhood of Santurce.
My home. Literally. I once posted on my stories that I thought of Cafe Comunion as my second home and they responded with “we have a futon.” Haha. They even know me by name and I’ve never told them. I’m there that often AND I creep their Instagram like every time they post something. In all seriousness, this cafe is amazing. Their coffee is absolute perfection and they even manage to make pretty latte art with almond milk. That is usually very hard to do. In fact one of the owners, Abner Roldan, has previously won Puerto Rico’s National Latte Art Championship two years in a row. The other owner, Karla is the definition of a #ladyboss. She’s so inspiring, sweet, and also makes killer cups of coffee. They also have insane open faced sandwiches called tostadas. I always get the same one that has pesto, mozzarella, avocado and a balsamic glaze. It’s so good! Also, this is the only place that I can rely on having fast WiFi which is important if you’re trying to finish a blog post.
If you are looking for a nice cafe to meet some friends, then Punto Medio should be your place. It’s a little too crowded and noisy if you’re trying to work but it has AMAAAAZING Spanish style tapas (like bravas and tortilla) a great wine and beer selection, and really killer coffee. I have to be super honest, I didn’t get a coffee while I was here. Instead I got a tea fusion or maybe a juice..or a lemonade thing. I really have no idea but it was all of those things in one. It was something with passion fruit, lemon, pineapple, carrot, and spinach. The carrot and spinach might throw you off but don’t let it. You should definitely try this even though I don’t know what it’s called. (Insert crying emoji face).
For a very good brunch, you should visit Cafe Marquesa just a block away from the Supermax on Calle Loiza/Jose de Diego. It’s perfect if you want to bring your laptop and get some work done while sipping on a beautifully crafted latte. I had the veggie risotto and I remember eating it so slow to savor each bite. And maybe to not look like a starving wolf. I’ve also had their mallorca con jamon y queso. Before I cut back on pork, I ordered one of these classic breakfast items and had it with straight espresso. Pretty typical Puerto Rican combo to start the day. A mallorca is a croissant filled with jam and cheese then dusted with powdered sugar. Sounds crazy, looks crazy, tast(ed) good.
Cafe con Ce is a small but trendy cafe in Santurce that has a great outdoor patio. They have incredible iced espresso lattes and yummy quiches to curb your appetite. When I visited this cute cafe I ordered up a Karibe Kombucha which is a local company brewing up some amazing tasting fermented teas. Usually, I strongly dislike the green flavored ones but I decided to give this one a try and I’m so glad I did. It wasn’t like hit you in the face strong but a mild pineapple flavor with hints of lemon. They also sell local honey, t-shirts, and all sorts of fresh baked pastries. When you get your beverage, you should make your way to the outdoor patio to surround yourself with all the lush greenery.
Hacienda San Pedro
For a great place to pick up bags of coffee beans grown locally in Puerto Rico, make your way over to Hacienda San Pedro. Their Instagram is active with posts about the coffee industry in Puerto Rico and I’ve even had a guest blogger write an article for Tapas and Travels about the coffee industry and the effects on the crops from the hurricane season.
Let me know what your favorite cafe in your neighborhood is in the comments below!