Visitors to Lexington’s beautiful bluegrass region always ask us for our definitive dining guide. This is Ace’s highly selective ten-part dining series (downtown, Chevy Chase, campus, popular breakfasts and brunch spots, coffee, international markets, beer guide, patios, etc) is based on the 20+ years Ace writers and readers have been eating out in Lexington, Kentucky.
This segment focuses on a small sampling of Lexington’s coffee options.
Coffea. 385 Rose Street. 859.253.6779. This is the coffee spot where University of Kentucky students and professors both come to meet, study, work, or avoid those same things while pretending to engage in them. Coffea has a strong coffee and tea selection as well as pastries, sandwiches, and smoothies. An expansion in 2012 doubled the size of the store making your odds of grabbing a seat significantly more likely.
Common Grounds Coffee House. 343 East High Street. 859.233.9761. Established in 1992, Common Grounds is located on the fringe of Lexington’s downtown, University of Kentucky’s campus, and the Chevy Chase neighborhood. The two story building is atmospheric and comfortable; a great place to chat, read, study, or host the occasional writing salon. They offer a wide variety of coffees and teas, as well as an extensive food menu. If you’re in the mood for caffeine and music, Common Grounds hosts an open mic night every Monday.
Coffee Times Coffee House. 2571 Regency Road. 859.277.9140. The only coffee house in Lexington that’s also its own roaster. Big comfy chairs make it a good place to sit back sip on some coffee or tea. Attached is also a shop full of knick-knacks and other items the coffee consumer might be looking for.
Cup of Commonwealth. 105 Eastern Avenue. 859.255.0270. A Cup of Commonwealth offers coffee with a twist. In addition to boasting a diverse selection of brews from around the globe, there is a “Pay It Forward” option that lets you spread the love and buy a future drink for someone to redeem at any time.
Great Bagel. 396 Woodland Avenue. 859.258.2210. While not a coffee house, Great Bagel does offer Chicago based Intelligentsia coffee. The big draw here is what you can get alongside your usual latte or espresso shot: fresh, local, bagels of all varieties.
North Lime Coffee and Doughnuts. 575 North Limestone. 859.379.2001. North Lime makes the ultimate coffee accompaniment: fresh doughnuts. Featuring chocolate iced donuts, funnel cake, and cinnamonkeys, as well as daily specials.
Third Street Stuff and Coffee. 257 N. Limestone. 859.255.5301. Voted “Best Cup of Coffee” by Ace Weekly’s Best of Lex multiple times this place is a must visit in Lexington. Funky, cheerful, artsy. Third Street Coffee is all of these things. Beyond the excellent assortment of coffees, cappuccinos, lattes, and the like, they serve a wide array of sandwiches, salads, bagels, and pastries. Connected to the cafe is a small shop of eclectic goods to browse while you sip. Hands down, one of the coolest places in Lexington.
wild fig books + coffee. 726 N. Limestone. 859.381.8133. The newest coffee shop on Lexington’s coffee scene is also one of Lexington’s oldest bookstores. Wild Fig is making a dramatic comeback after a year out of business at their new location on North Lime. Even better, they’re now also featuring a variety of coffees, lattes, and who could say no to the Wendell Berry Smoothie.
View Top Coffee Shops in a larger map
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Where to Eat in Lexington Kentucky: 10 Downtown Ace Summer 2012