We are guilty of momentarily resenting the person at the coffee shop who is sitting solo at the great table, obsessively hitting his/her laptops’s keys, their coffee long gone. Coffee break real estate is probably the least discriminatory that there is–where else could someone sit for hours having only ordered a coffee without being politely reminded that there’s any ort of time limit? Never. Or maybe we just don’t go to those places.
But when you have the seat, and the coffee and it’s a great place, well, then it’s a different story, right?
Below is a short list of cool places to sit and write in our city.
1. The Hub
1029 Shaw St., Toronto, ON M6G 3N2
Here you’ll find comfortable tables and chairs; sometimes you might share. It’s very much a community coffee shop and they make delicious organic treats, although by the end of the day, they don’t have much left. We don’t think they like to waste. The sandwiches are delicious and taste even better than they look. The coffee is amazing, but if you don’t want coffee, then they have other alternatives. The vibe is the best at this place, and if you’re determined, you can really get a lot done here.
3079 Dundas St W., Toronto, ON M6P 1Z9
This place has wonderful coffee and a variety of teas, plus they are always well-stocked with teas. The coffee is as good as LA’s Urth. The nice thing is that there are plenty of tables (maybe too many) and there are always people parked on there for hours on end. If you go when it’s busier (after work or on weekends), you might have trouble getting a table, but otherwise, it’s a nice low-key place to work.
3. Starbucks at Yonge and Eglinton
We love Starbucks in general for the coffee, but not often for the ambiance because they tend to be so busy and noisy and we’ve found the tables to be sticky and dirty–not where a nice computer should be resting. This one is different. First of all, it’s inside Indigo, which is a great bookstore. Second, it’s very cozy, with different types of chairs and just enough tables not to feel crowded. Third, it’s airy because despite being in a bookstore (don’t get us started on the broom closet that is the Starbucks at Yorkdale Mall), it is situated in a corner of an exterior window and you can even sit on a stool at the counter near the large windows overlooking Yonge St.
5120 Yonge St., Toronto, ON M2N 5N9
Good libraries are under rated, they really are. This one is one of the city’s largest ones and it’s relatively busy. Like all libraries, you have to scout out a location away from the talkers and distractors, but with so many available seats, it’s not usually too difficult, but like anything else, after school and work are the busiest times. They do have some private rooms, but unless you are there right at its opening, you’re probably going to be out of luck. With a library card, you can also access internet and there are enough places around for a quick lunch break or snack and a Starbucks downstairs.
5. The Jet Fuel
519 Parliament St., Toronto ON M4X 1P3
Very bohemian coffee house. It’s not always a sure bet as the music is sometimes too loud to concentrate with, but often times, it’s a great low-key place that serves inexpensive and good coffee without any fuss. Place hasn’t change in at least 20 years. And nearby is the quaint Riverdale Zoo in case you need to clear your head and get back to nature while in a city setting.