If your regular caffeine fix is getting old, we’ve got great news for you. Tucked away into the neighbourhoods of Mount Pleasant, Kitsilano, Commercial Drive, and West End are some of the best-hidden gems in the city – cute neighbourhood cafes. Why not explore a couple on your next walk and pop in for a spell? Here are 14 spots to get you started this fall & winter.

The Mighty Oak

 

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Chances are if you live between South Cambie and Main, you’ve already passed by this neighbourhood cafe and grocery store hundreds of times. For those who have not yet been inside, take it from us—it’s a really cute setup!

Patio seating, hanging plants, fresh pastries, and delicious espresso beverages for every palate. Our preference? Go for a cappuccino or one of their housemade PSLs if that’s your thing, or grab a pesto turkey sandwich if you’ve got an appetite.

Where: 198 West 18th Avenue

Argo Cafe

 

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The true definition of a hidden gem, Argo Cafe offers diners and passers-by an authentic ‘hole-in-the-wall’ experience with plenty of breakfast/brunch comfort food, milkshakes, and dinner options. Nestled between Mount Pleasant and Olympic Village, the longstanding cafe is family-owned and operated, surviving countless changes to the neighbourhood landscape since opening in 1954. The amazing pies and feature on The Food Network are just icing on the cake.

Where: 1836 Ontario Street

Commercial Street Cafe

Not to be confused with Commercial Drive, this cafe is located just off of the Drive in a plant-clad building with amazing ciabatta bun sandwiches and breakfast options to offer those with a grumbling stomach. Want a weekend activity rec? Stop by for a snack and explore the local art scene at Artem Exhibits or Equinox Gallery.

Where: 3599 Commercial Street

Velo Star Cafe

 

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This pet-friendly cafe actually doubles as a bike shop—perfect if you’re cycling through the area and need a quick pick-me-up!

Whether you need a breakfast sandwich to fuel your day, a bike tune-up–or both, Velo Star has you covered. Hang out inside the bike shop, or sit outdoors in their garden patio area.

Where: 3195 Heather Street

Caffe Cittadella 

 

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This multi-level cafe and bistro is situated in a late 19th-century heritage house, complete with character archways, large windows, and an outdoor patio with gorgeous views of False Creek. Perfect for a quiet afternoon of laptop work and coffee, or catching up with friends over their daily happy hour menu.

If you feel like being on the move, you can take a ‘treat bag’ to go for a stroll through Charleson Park (the off-leash dog park by False Creek).

Where: 2310 Ash Street

Le Marché St. George

Le Marché is a popular destination for traditional French pastries, Croque Monsieur, and other comfort food, but its location definitely lends itself to the “hidden” part of this list.

Tucked behind Fraser Street on St. George is the perfect cherry blossom-clad corner to meet up with friends and have a chat over coffee or tea. They even have books and board games to keep you occupied all afternoon!

Where: 4393 St. George Street

The Federal Store

 

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A quaint luncheonette and grocer slash cafe, The Federal Store really does it all. The plant-adorned spot nestled between Quebec and Main is known for its amazing selection of house-baked cakes. Honey Cardamom Buttercream, Rose Milk Chocolate, and Roasted Strawberry Cake are just the tip of the delicious iceberg!

Grab a spot at the window or on their outdoor patio and enjoy a bevy and a slice.

Where: 2601 Quebec Street

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Arbutus Coffee

 

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Best known for being “that one cafe by the Greenway,” Arbutus Coffee has become a celebrated spot for fresh bagels, pastries, and even gelato on West 6th and Arbutus. Come rain or shine, or snow—this local favourite is always there when you need it.

Bring a book or take a look at the ones available in the Free Little Library next to the cafe.

Where: 2200 Arbutus Street

Oh Carolina Cafe & Grocery

 

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It seems like coffee beverages and groceries are a popular combo! Oh Carolina is as comfy and convenient as it gets—not to mention, they have some amazing snack and breakfast options, including savoury pies from @aussiepieguy. You’ll definitely want to check this spot out if you haven’t already!

Where: 580 East 12th avenue

Far Out Coffee Post

 

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Coffee. Vintage clothing. Arcade games. Three things you probably thought couldn’t exist at the same location, yet here we are. Far Out is a quirky spot where friends & neighbours can get together, enjoy specialty croissants and cinnamon buns, or just hang by the pinball machine.

Where: 2173 Dundas Street

Cafe Portrait

 

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Cafe Portrait is probably one of the most unique finds you’ll stumble across in Vancouver. The Turkish-owned and operated cafe is located just minutes away from English Bay, but once you head inside, you enter a whole other world. A vibrant art show meets breakfast with a view.

Pro-tip: take your Turkish coffee (brewed over hot sand!) and sit by the window to people-watch.

Where: 1120 Denman Street

Revolver

 

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Situated right across from Purebread in Gastown is one of the best spots for espresso drinks we’ve come across in the city. From the tasting flights to the funky decor, to the extra seating room next door, you really can’t go wrong with a visit to Revolver. Settle in for a couple of hours of laptop work or grab something tasty to go and peruse the shops in Gastown.

Where: 325 Cambie Street

Cardero Cafe 

This West End spot doubles as a ‘Latin snackery,’ serving up a slew of delicious soups, sandwiches, and specialty drinks, including the Dulce de Leche Macchiato and the Fruta de la Pasión from Brazil. Come to try the Latin-inspired fare and stay for the ‘homey’ vibes. Plus, they have tons of traditional snacks from a variety of Latin American countries that are likely tough to track down anywhere else in Vancouver!

Where: 1016 Cardero Street

The Original Beanery Coffee House

Last but not least, we come to the Beanery at UBC. Chances are if you’re a student, you’ve probably studied at The Beanery while nursing a couple of 20 oz coffees or tried to hammer out the details of a group project over carrot cake.

This spot is the perfect haven away from the masses on Main Mall and the Nest. Come for the chill vibes and window seats, and stay for the fresh-made chocolate whipped cream. Just trust us on this one.

Where: 2706 Fairview Crescent, UBC (located at the back of the residence)

And that’s all for now, Vancouver. Happy cafe hopping!