Where to have coffee in Shanghai ☕️
For me, one of the most important parts of exploring a new place is knowing where to stop for a great coffee on the way. I spend a lot of time researching and finding some of the most popular coffee shops in the area but also some smaller, up and coming and local favourites. I've decided to start sharing my experiences and hopefully help save you some time in finding your next caffeine fix!
So, if coffee is your thing, these are a few of the best coffee shops that you'll want to put in your itinerary when visiting Shanghai.
#1 Cafe Del Volcan
A little cafe at 80 Yongkang Road. It's a very small space but makes up for it with very friendly staff and great speciality coffee. They were very happy to share with us about the different coffee options available and teach us about the variety of styles and processes that they offer. They also have a 'coffee of the week' that is worth asking about and maybe taking a bag home with you.
Knowledgeable and friendly staff
Wide variety of freshly roasted coffee
Great pour overs and hand brews
Only a few food options
A little pricy
#2 Seesaw Coffee
A minimalist coffee shop tucked away in the Jing'an Design Center. A beautifully clean and modern space with plenty of indoor seating and a large courtyard if you're looking for a bit more natural light. We arrived a little before closing hours so pretty much had the place to ourselves, though I hear it can be super busy during the day. They serve a great flat white and some nice pour overs. Definitely worth a visit if you can find it!
Lots of seating
Great flat white
Speciality coffee options
Busy during the day
A bit difficult to find
A little pricy
#3 Peet's Cafe
At 9 Donghu Lu is China's first outlet belonging to West Coast coffee chain Peet's. It's a little different from the US look and feel, with a bright and modern design. It has a large patio space and window seating. 12 coffees are available at any time, all brewed within 28 days of roasting at their semi-circular bar. They have a great retail section with a variety of different products for baristas and home brewers. They also have something called a 'discovery bar', where tasting flights, courses and custom cups are led by the shop's baristas and roasters. A full coffee experience. The only downside is the busyness. We struggled to find a seat inside for around 20 minutes. It's worth the wait though.
Find out more about Peet's Coffee and their story here.
Lots of coffee options
Large Retail Section
A little pricy
#4 Roasters Cafe
In a tiny space at 4 Yuyuan Lu, just around the corner from Cafe Del Volcan, you'll find Roasters Cafe. It's perfect for a take-away, as there's no seating! Plus a number of flavoured lattes that you can order hot or cold. It's also well known for it's in house roasting. As we waited for our order, we watched as they hand selected the green coffee beans, removing defects in preparation for roasting, right in the front of the shop. It was amazing to see the care put into each cup of coffee. Worth dropping by to grab something on your way around.
Great iced coffees
Freshly roasted in store
No pour over options
Asking for coffee in the local language
你好! 我要一杯咖啡。 (nǐ hǎo! wǒ yào yī bēi kā fēi.) — Hello! I would like a cup of coffee.
Types of coffee
拿铁 (ná tiě) — Latte
浓缩咖啡 (nóng suō kā fēi) — Espresso
卡布奇诺 (kǎ bù jī nuò) — Cappuccino
摩卡 (mó kǎ) — Mocha
美式咖啡 (měi shì kā fēi) — Americano
玛奇朵 (mǎ qí duǒ) — Macchiato
星冰乐 (xīng bīng lè) — Frappuccino
冷萃 (lěng cuì) — Cold brew
茶 (chá) — Tea
Sizes of coffee
小杯 (xiǎo bēi) — Short
中杯 (zhōng bēi) — Tall
大杯 (dà bēi) — Grande
超大杯 (chāo dà bēi) — Venti