NYFW | coffee shop hot spots

every year the women of new york leave the past behind and look forward for the future. this is known as fashion week.

carrie bradshaw | sex and the city

labor day has come and gone, and like clockwork, fashion’s most stylish set have descended on to the streets of new york city.

whether you’re an editor, blogger, photographer or admiring from afar, here’s a list of eyd approved coffee near the home of so many of this season’s shows.

grab a cup on your way to a show, or take a seat to sift through emails aka insta. i’ve made it easy for you and denoted which shops will suit your needs.

coffee near sklylight clarkson sq

joe's coffee in the cadillac house | hudson square | near the skylight clarkson NYFW


joe coffee in the cadillac house | on hudson, btwn charlton & vandam

.3 mi from skylight clarkson sq

330 hudson street
new york, ny 10013

note: if you’re nearby go! super chic space with wifi and a beautifully designed seating area. indoor & outdoor. tables large enough to meet with 4-5 people.

la colombe hudson square, nyc | near skylight clarkson NYFW


la colombe | on vandam, btwn hudson & varick

.3 mi from skylight clarkson sq

75 vandam st
new york, ny 10013

note: no wifi, but it’s la colombe so we always let that slide. gorgeous as per usual and some of the best (&strongest) coffee.

coffee near milk studios

kobrick coffee - meatpacking districty, nyc - near milk studios NYFW


kobrick coffee co. | on 9th ave, btwn 13th & 14th st

.2 mi from milk studios

24 9th ave.
new york, ny 10014

note: darkly lit and good for day or night meetings. wifi & plenty of lush velvety seating.



blue bottle coffee | on 15th st, btwn 10th & 9th ave

.0 mi from milk studios

450 w 15th st
new york, ny 10014

coffee near pier 59 studios

under line coffee - chelsea, right below the high line at 20th street



under line coffee | on 20th st, btwn west st & 10th ave

.2 mi from pier 59 studios

511 w 20th st
new york, ny 10011

note: wifi & indoor seating. for outdoor seating, take it up to the high line. there’s an entrance just a hop & a skip from the shop’s front door.

intelligentsia, highline hotel, nyc


intelligentsia at the high line hotel | on 10th ave, btwn 21st & 20th st

.3 mi from pier 59 studios

180 10th ave
new york, ny 10011

note: wifi, indoor & outdoor seating. perfect place for a quick meeting. this space makes you feel as if you’ve travelled back in time.

coffee near spring studios – varick

maman in tribeca, nyc | near spring studios NYFW



maman tribeca | on broadway btwn white & franklin

.2 mi from spring studios

211 w broadway,
new york, ny 10013

note: one of the most enchanting spaces. no wifi, but you don’t come here for that anyways, you come for the coffee, food & ambiance.



everyman espresso | on broadway, btwn canal & grand st

.2 mi from spring studios

301 w broadway
new york, ny 10013

note: wifi & some wonderful window seating for people watching while you scroll through that insta feed.


coffee near skylight at moynihan station


culture 36 | on 36th st, btwn 7th & 8th ave

.3 mi from sklylight at moynihan station

247 w 36th st
new york, ny 10018

note: wifi & indoor seating. get the cookie.

bean and bean coffee - chelsea, nyc - NYFW close to skylight moynihan station



bean & bean | on 8th ave, btwn 26th & 25th st

.4 mi from skylight at moynihan station

318 8th ave
new york, ny 10001

note: super large space with wifi and plenty of places to sit. a little loud, but a good place for a quick meeting.

pushcart coffee - chelsea, nyc - near NYFW skylight at moynihan station



pushcart coffee | on 25th, btwn 10th and 9th ave

.5 mi from skylight at moynihan station

401 w 25th st
new york, ny 10001

note: wifi, spacious and low key. doesn’t get as packed as other shops, so you can really hunker down and get to work here.


the 7 | brooklyn outdoor coffee shops edition

brooklyn. home of girls, iconic street art, the bk bridge and copious amounts of coffee. with coffee shop vibes that rival portlandia, and vast open spaces that feel more la than nyc, brooklyn knows how to do coffee. editing down my favorite brooklyn outdoor coffee shop spaces meant having to play favorites amongst a list of 20+ spaces that are each special in their own right.

i used my usual scientific method, which is kind of konmari-esque now that i think about it. i took a deep breathe before i visualized the space on my list, and i thought back to how it made me feel at first sight. i only included places that quite literally took my breathe away.

in no particular order, here are my lucky 7 brooklyn outdoor coffee spaces.

(note, if you’re looking for manhattan spaces, click here.)

i call them lucky, because visiting one on a warm afternoon can turn a lackadaisical day into the most magical experience. coffee sessions in these outdoor spaces almost always result in the greatest of aha breakthrough moments, or epic life talks with friends.

i’m not a 100% sure why our hearts are apt to feel so open in these spaces.

maybe it’s the expansive, peaceful haven of space brooklyn offers, or the heart aching intention behind the design of each space?

whatever it is, a visit to any of these 7 spots will leave a lasting imprint of summer lovin’ on your heart.

sweatshop, a coffee shop in williamsburg, brooklyn

one. sweatshop

williamsburg, brooklyn
232 metropolitan ave, brooklyn, ny 11211
m – f  7am – 6pm
s – su 8am – 6pm

tiny, but mighty. the outdoor seating area of this shop is small, but is strategically laid out to accommodate a sizeable amount of people. much like the interior of the shop, its exterior carries out its chic minimal industrial design. lush green plants line the crates-turned-tables and sleek black aluminum benches. everything about the space feels so creative, from its decor to its inhabitants, you’ll feel inspired the entire time you’re here.

oh and i can’t forget about their epic, “don’t look for love look for coffee,” signage. makes for the perfect photo back-drop.

black brick coffee, williamsburg, brooklyn - outdoor space

two. black brick coffee

williamsburg, brooklyn
300 bedford ave, brooklyn, ny 11211
m-f 7am – 8pm
s-su 8am – 8pm
fyi, cash only

want to know what it would feel like to step out into an upscale
and impeccably edited junkyard set? visit black brick coffee in williamsburg and you’ll wonder no more.

the backyard space feels like a legitimate movie set. rich in color and texture, you’ll try to photograph the space, but photos won’t do it justice. black brick manages to make a mish mash of outdoor furniture from the past 100 years feel incredibly current and heart achingly good.

the vale collective | a williamsburg brooklyn boutique and coffee shop

three. the vale collective

north side williamsburg, brooklyn
113 n 7th st, new york, 11211
m – su 10am – 7pm

part clothing boutique part coffee shop, the vale collective is a fashionista’s dream. in addition to its vibrant coffee shop bar and interior decor, there’s a perfectly manicured backyard space that’ll have you longing to host an afternoon tea. its marble tables, perfectly trimmed hedges and floral arrangements are perfect for a girls day spent chatting and sipping on an iced latte.

freehold, brooklyn, williamsburg - coffee shop & bar

four. freehold

williamsburg, brooklyn
45 s 3rd st, brooklyn, ny 11249
m – w 7am – 2am
thu – sat 7am – 2am
su 7am – 2am

when i first moved to new york city, freehold was one of the first coffee shops i worked from. back then it was called “the den,” and it was just a coffee shop front with oh so many dreams behind its construction doors. its expansive windows let in the most beautiful sunlight and i felt so at home amongst the chatter of meetings and keystrokes.

now it’s a vibrant entertainment space that lives up to its meet-work-play tagline. co-work during the day and enjoy its grassy courtyard late into the evening.

kave, bushwick, brooklyn - backyard space

five. kave

bushwick, brooklyn
1087 flushing ave #121, brooklyn, ny 11237
m – su 8am – 8pm

known for its iconic street art, bushwick is making moves in coffee culture scene. i make the hour trek from the upper east side to bushwick just because the coffee scene is that good.

nestled inside an urban strip mall, you’ll find kave at the end of the most vibrant emerald green hallway. after you’re done gawking at the space’s impeccable details, make your way into this clandestine coffee shop and place your order at the coffee bar. grab your drink and make your way outside to the patio space.

yes, it’s huge. and yes, it’s got twinkle lights. come in the late afternoon with some friends and stay until the sun sets. i promise you’ll have a magical time. it’s impossible to not.

father knows best, bushwick, brooklyn - coffee shop, cafe and bar

six. father knows best

bushwick, brooklyn
611a wilson ave, brooklyn, ny 11207
m – su 8am – 2am
productivity in the am. promiscuity in the pm. now that’s a tagline.

the backyard at father knows best will leave you feeling like you’ve escaped to a tropical island. seriously, you can sip on your coconut drink while you lay in a hammock that sits next to a baby palm tree.

tekoa, a coffee shop in cobble hill, brooklyn

seven. tekoa

cobble hill, brooklyn
264 clinton st, brooklyn, ny 11201
m – f 7am – 5pm
s – su 8am – 5pm

tekoa is the perfect place to take out-of-town visitor to. located in cobble hill, its close proximity to historical brownstones, the brooklyn heights promenade and dumbo make it the perfect location to kick off a day of exploring.

or if you’re a local its set of outdoor seating, and it being adjacent to the cutest historical park, sets the tone for a splendid day of the leisurely lounging. i can’t pinpoint exactly what makes this place so zen, but go, and you’ll see what i mean. its rich red exterior and corner location gives you all the right kind of weekend feels.



ap cafe, brooklyn

ap cafe, bushwick brooklyn, nyc

ap cafe

420 troutman st

brooklyn, ny 11237

nearby points of interest:

the bushwick collective (on troutman) – a street art mecca

region: bushwick

hours: seasonal, but usually 8 – 5 pm

wifi: yes (no wifi on weekends)

outlets: yes

the escape

rooted in deep minimalistic vibes, ap café continues to reign supreme as my favorite bushwick coffee destination. and yes, considering the amount of coffee served up in bushwick that’s a bold statement, but if you love a bright open space that embraces scandi design, you too will fall fast and hard for this place.

if someone asked me to pick a place that i would want to live in this would be it. the light in this place is exquisite, and between the airy ambiance its floor to ceiling windows and curated music selection creates, it’s highly plausible that you will fall into a deep soothing trance. i love to come in on a weekday, munch on the delicious kale pesto quinoa bowl, sip on my iced latte, and tap away on the laptop. during the week the crowd that gathers is focused on getting shit done, and that is infectious.

and now back to that kale pesto quinoa bowl. it is seriously one of the most delicious things i’ve ever eaten. it’s simple, but the flavors in this bowl complement one and another so well they create a distinctive burst of flavor. this bowl has single-handedly reignited my love for quinoa. trust – it’s on another level, and you should definitely get it when you go. if you don’t that’s okay, you won’t be disappointed by any of their food fare.

ap cafe - minimal and sleek modern design. seating areaap cafe modern seating area

the story of the space

on their website, ap café tell us not to, “get [too] distracted by the physical beauty behind our minimalistic architecture & design, what we have to offer runs deeper than surface level artistry.” they bill themselves as, “a group of creatives that collaboratively worked on bringing the community together by combining specialty coffee [from people who care] with good food [because we love to feast].”

if someone called on me in a town hall meeting and asked whether or not i support this statement i’d raise my hand and shake my head up down in emphatic agreement.

ap’s founders knew exactly what type of customer they were creating for and stayed true to their vision. concrete floors, wooden tables and crisp white chairs make this spot a minimalists dream. their details are subtle and achingly intentional – little succulents sit upon each table, and you won’t find a regular fridge keeping their grab & go cool, instead you’ll find a sleek white cooler in its place. you feel like you’re in an exceptionally curated showroom and you’re its productive (& chic) minion on display to those walking in & out for their cup of joe. you feel so great, you never want to leave.

good to know

no wifi on the weekends, so if you’re looking to work, pop in during the week. i have yet to visit on the weekend, but rumor has it that they serve up a pretty mean brunch menu.

the shop is quite spacious and offers quite a bit of seating in the form of counter tops, individual tables and a communal table bench setting along it’s westward facing wall. the wifi, and the numerous outlets along the wall seats, make this an ideal space to work from during the week.

while you’re there, don’t forget to check out the world renowned bushwick collective graffiti art.

ap cafe facade

portola coffee lab

portola coffee lab, santa ana, california |specialty coffee roaster and shop

portola coffee lab

3313 hyland ave, suite b2
costa mesa, ca 92626

mon – fri 6 – 9
sat – sun 7 – 9

wifi: yes

outlets: yes

nearby points of interest:

oc mart mix farmer’s market (saturday)
south coast plaza
the lab | indoor/outdoor anti-mall
the camp | a green communal shop & eat space

additional locations:
tustin, santa ana, old towne orange, huntington beach, mission viejo

the escape

while living in orange county, portola coffee lab’s flagship location at the oc mart mix was my go-to spot. it was one of the first specialty coffee shops i ever visited, and to this day i believe it is one of the best places to grab a cup in in orange county. while the flagship is incredibly stylish and oh-so photogenic, it’s the love and care the owners put into developing the complete coffee experience that keeps me coming back time after time. there’s an undeniable sense of positive energy you’ll feel anytime you visit their mart mix location, and it’s always provided the reboot i needed during my mid-week slumps.

if portola hadn’t come into my life in 2011 i don’t think i could have sustained working from home for very long. the space’s beautiful design and delicious coffee kept me inspired, and the space served as the perfect home-office escape for more than 3 years.

with friendly baristas and plenty of other digital nomads setting up shop in the mart mix, i felt understood and at home. orange county isn’t exactly the mecca of freelance activity, so finding a place with all the right vibes really impacted the quality of my productivity.

portola coffee lab, costa mesa, ca | speciality coffee shop and roaster in orange county

the space & story

the brand’s lab theme is tastefully carried out throughout the entire experience (nothing cheesy to see here). visually, you’ll pick up its cues amongst the glass filled beakers and tubes that make up their mad scientist coffee lab, and you’ll taste those scientific methods at work in their impeccably sourced and roasted coffee. their “pursuit of perfection,” is no joke. you feel the passion of portola’s owners, jeff and christa duggan, every time you step in & sip in their shop.

since this space is nestled inside the oc mart mix you’ll literally find an optimal mix of single and communal seating areas. there are table & counter top seats right next to the shop’s coffee lab (think outlets & productivity galore), couches (friend talk) and other communal tables throughout the space. with a myriad of local boutiques and speciality food spots, this place is perfect for working, eating and meeting.

portoloa coffee lab, costa mesa, ca | coffee and croissant

good to know

the soco farmer’s market takes place in the oc mart mix parking lot every saturday from 9 – 2 pm.

ikea is down the street. may i suggest a day of perusing and coffee?

birdie has some of the most amazing healthy treats. think acai bowls and pressed juices.

portola’s sister shop theorum, located right next to the main lab, provides a one-of-a-kind coffee experience. “theorem is a walk-up bar where select baristas are given the creative freedom to develop personalized coffee menus that showcase amazingly creative coffee drinks.”

shuck oyster shop. stop here if you love oysters. that’s all you need to know.

want a sweet treat? look no further than susie cakes

trying to be a little healthy. go to greenleaf, a gourmet chopshop

intelligentsia, venice

intelligentisa abbot kinney, venice | sleek, modern & industrial design and coffee shop seating

intelligentsia abbot kinney, venice

1331 abbot kinney blvd

venice, ca 90291

region: venice

mon – thu 6 – 8
fri 6 – 10
sat 7 – 10
sun 7 – 10

wifi: yes

outlets: yes

nearby points of interest: 

the entire city of venice! j/k that’s a lot, but really take the time to explore abbot kinney; there are so many local boutiques and eats along this classic cali street.

venice canal historic district

abbot kinney favorites: gjelina, urbanic, alternative apparel, salt and lemonade

the escape

it was april 2012, and with my sister in tow we made the drive up from the oc to venice for a day of exploration. i was smack dab in the middle of my restless (and uninspired) working from home period, and as fate would have it had the epiphany i didn’t know i was looking for on this day.

intelligentsia is the first coffee shop i posted on the @escapeyourdesk instagram account and was the catalyst to this passion project. while i didn’t post the photo to instagram until 2014, it was on this fateful day that a new way of life and being was born, and the escape your desk mantra came to life.

i still remember the visit like it was yesterday…

with luck on our side, we find a free parking spot a block away from abbot kinney (if you know la you know this is major!). we make our way up california st and make a quick right onto the famed abbot kinney. of course the first thing i spot is the shiny intelligentsia emblem i’d bookmarked on yelp eons ago. i can’t believe we’re finally here (eeek!).

i start to pick up the pace; we stop at the entrance and my heart can’t help but skip a million beats.

we make our way through the gates and are entranced by what could arguably be the epicenter of california coolness. the walkway is everything; it’s lined with lush greenery and a wall of chic, but ever so industrial-esque wooden bleachers. only adding to the space’s vibe is the fact that its seats are filled to the brim with angelenos who embody the elevated surfer chic look to a t: slim fitting sweats, texturized hair and the perfect messy tuck of an alexander wang tee.

we get in line (which is of course out the front door) and i feel a whole another rush of dopamine hit as i fixate on the details inside of this shop. the meticulous design makes it all feel so effortlessly intentional: glass mini coffee carafes, wooden trays, and of course, white ceramic mugs with the classic intelligentsia red ring bottom.

nothing is overlooked, and i quickly decide that i want to mirror my life after this type of effortlessly intentional vibe.

as we approach the front of the line i glimpse at the menu and look up. and, just wow. the skylight is letting some of the most beautiful sunlight i’ve ever seen into this lofted open space.

a perfect mix of grand and delicate touches engulf you as you enter the shop, and its quite clear the shop’s creators thoughtfully designed its layout to present the layers of experiences they hope to create for their customers.

i place my order and the line breaks; i’m guided along one side of the counter to watch my barista prepare my iced latte – i love that you become a part of the process. the seating is just as curated as the ordering experience, and i realize this space is perfect for it all: meeting friends, coming to work or picking up a quick cup of coffee.

as i walk out the front gates, i know i’m home.

and my friends, this is where the constant chase for daily escapes all started.

intelligentsia abbot kinney, venice | modern industrial coffee shop design

the space

“intelligentsia hired ana henton of mass architecture & design to execute the venice coffeebar. the idea is for a barista to create an individualized experience for every customer, regardless of how many are being served.”

intelligentsia executed this vision and was one of the very first to truly craft a creative and carefully curated coffee shop. from the moment you place your order, you become a part of the experience. being able to watch your barista carefully prepare your drink whilst you wait, without crowding around you, is unique to this location. the space was designed to move traffic along both sides of the bar, and it’s good use of space makes it easy to spread out throughout the shop with your beverage.

intelligentsia abbot kinney, venice | barista brewing area of coffee shop

good to know

this place gets crazy packed on the weekends, but weekdays in the late afternoon are a great time to come in if you’re looking to get some work done.

there’s an entrance in the back of the shop, so you’re able to make a clean entrance and exit to and from your parking spot.

free parking along the street behind the shop. come for the coffee, but stay for the ambiance. trust, this place is worth fighting the crowds for.

toby’s estate coffee

tobys estate coffee shop, williamsburg | curated shelving decor close up

toby’s estate coffee, williamsburg

125 n 6th st

brooklyn, ny 11249

nearby points of interest:

williamsburg water front at the west end of n 6th st

coffee | devocion, sweatshop, blue bottle & sweetleaf

shopping | space ninety 8, maje and artists & fleas

region: north williamsburg


m – f 7 – 7

sat – sun 8 – 7

wifi: yes

outlets: none

additional locations | west village, flatiron & vanderbilt urban space

tobys estate coffee shop, williamsburg brooklyn | afternoon light

the back-story

toby’s estate in williamsburg will forever be one of my favorite coffee shops. the way the space makes me feel each time i visit represents the types of emotions/vibes i hope to feel each time i visit a new escape.

the first time i walked up to toby’s i was immediately engulfed by its expansive windows and couldn’t help but stand in front of the shop in complete awe. i know i looked like a total tourist, but i’m pretty positive you will too on your first visit. being from the mecca of chains (aka the suburbia that is the oc), i was not accustomed to this type of styled grandeur. toby’s embodied so much of why i yearned make the cross country move to nyc. its chic urban surroundings, effortlessly intentional design, and all the coworking vibes i felt made me feel so alive. every time i’d visit nyc i’d make it a point to work out of toby’s at least once, and visiting the space now as a new yorker makes me feel so grateful for how far i’ve come.

the escape

toby’s estate coffee in williamsburg is the one-of-a-kind shop you always take out-of-towners to when you’re aiming to provide the complete brooklyn experience. there’s a bit of magic to the space, and the combination of its loft-like ceilings, grand shop window, and its prime location on n6th come together to catch the most spectacular light on even the gloomiest of days.

toby’s was designed with a clear and meticulous vision. its precise layers of décor draw your eye in, and you find yourself viewing the space with fresh eyes each time you visit. they got the coffee shop equation just right, and there’s something for everyone here. whether you’re a coffee connoisseur, design aficionado, digital nomad or avid people watcher, visiting toby’s will make your heart flutter.

brought to life with effortless intention, toby’s serves up an exceptionally curated experience for all your senses. part of the space’s magic is its ability to create a different experience each time you visit. when i sit on the couch along the shelves i become entranced by the crowds and can’t stop daydreaming up new ideas. alternatively, when i sit at the communal table, the infectious energy of the co-working around me pushes me to pump out those tasks i’ve been putting off forever, and for me these feelings have always been enough to brave the crowds that flock to this toby’s outpost.

tobys estate coffee, williamsburg | front of coffee shop at dusk

for working

while i love working from here, some things to keep in mind are: it’s always busy, there are no outlets, and you’ll most likely have to share a table. that being said, you should still make the trek. it’s always worth it. there’s always a nook you can take a seat in until a more desirable spot opens up.

the energy here is quite special. if your schedule is flexible – my favorite time to frequent this spot is during the late afternoon as you’re most likely to find a spot, and the light that comes in from the floor to ceiling windows during & post sunset is true afterglow.

for exploring

if you’re visiting the area for the first time i highly recommend walking down n6th to the water and taking in the views of manhattan. the waterfront area is spectacular. there’s a pier, views galore (manhattan, queens & south brooklyn skyline) and so many places to sit and ponder life.

if you like hardcore workouts, make sure to check out brooklyn bodyburn. it is hands down the best and most challenging workout ever! their motto of, “you don’t need more time, you need more intensity,” couldn’t be more true.

if you want to grab a bite to eat i love reynard at the wythe hotel, bakeri and maison premiere. to sip on some coffee and work: the freehold, kinfolk, devocion and sweatshop are my go-tos.

tobys estate coffee, williamsburg | outdoor seating summertime