The Wonders of the Prague Coffee Scene

First, there’s no way that this essay would have been possible without our friends at Taste of Prague. Not only did we get to know Jan through our initial food and culture tour, his and Zuzi’s guide book was the foundation of our adventure through Prague. Thank you.

But this piece is focused exclusively on Prague’s coffee scene which I can assure you, dear reader of mine, having traveled for well over 3,000,000 miles now, is truly one of the world’s best. This is not only because of how many great cafes there are in a relatively small city (not many more than 1,000,000 people in Prague) but because of how inventive the coffee scene is.

Let’s start with this weekend’s Prague Coffee Festival, which we attended on Saturday, to which we headed from Holesovice and the Vietnam Festival (evidently, we enjoyed a festive weekend). Here’s a view from our walk to the festival.

What an event it was. With coffee people in from all over the world, and truly stellar lines (like 50–70 people deep) for the creations of some of Europe’s top baristas, this was a serious thing.

First, seriously, I couldn’t resist taking this pic. 😎

Okay, that out of the way, let’s dive in to just a serious pile of amazing images from the festival.

and, finally,

Over the course of eight days in Prague, we hit pretty much every cafe of note, and discovered some amazing new things on our own. More on that in a sec.

The places we frequented were:

Ema

Misto

Original

Savoy

I need coffee

Anonymous

Trattoria la finestra (omg the brown sugar melted into espresso here, which you use as your coffee sugar)

Novy Svēt

Orient something (a painfully terrible recommendation, where we took one sip and left, hours after arriving in Prague)

Coffee festival, where we sampled Barn Berlin / White Label Amsterdam / Alchemy Prague / many more.

Look. I know this is a rambling piece, but it’s actually très stream-of-consciousness, as is the Prague coffee scene. It’s a culture built upon invention, creativity, keeping what was for too long far too balanced, very off-balanced.

Like this.

This is a coffee and music pop-up that I found today as we were walking to Cafe Savoy. It’s amazing, an artist’s cooperative essentially squatting in a very fly empty space for a week.

I sat outside and talked with the curator, who told me that they pretty much had no idea why they were doing this, but that, a day in, it felt great.

I love stuff like this. Coffee and experience for the sake of coffee and experience.

Here’s more from the space.

Okay. That’s plenty of me. Here are, truly in random order, of some of the best coffee experiences I had this week. Jan, again from Taste of Prague, framed things beautifully earlier in the week in terms of “our best bites” — the taste sensations that gave us the greatest rush, the most pleasure.

Here are just a few of mine from the past days. Weeks such as this make me reflect upon not only my love for coffee, but also my early involvement and at least slight influence on the Beijing coffee scene and the notion that one could, as I did very early on, build coffee apps.

And, truly, I implore you, if you love coffee, coming to Prague is a must, not a maybe.

The amount of flavor and passion behind each of these images is ridiculous. Prague is a deeply amazing place on hundreds of levels. I hope that these pics intrigue you enough to try to make a trip to this great and good place.

As for my absolutely finest coffee of the week, it’s almost impossible to ascertain. But I’m going to go with the simple filter coffee from Kavárna Misto

A filter coffee, done to perfection, may in itself be the apex of coffee perfection. In the midst of hundreds of great bites in Prague, this is what I am comfortable saying was the best.

Thank you, Prague. Thank you.