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Your guide to Bristol's hottest coffee spots

Zachary Cronin

28th November 2023

For many people their morning coffee has become an integral part of their daily routine. Whether it's popping in to see your favourite barista or lovingly preparing your own at home, it is a ritual that many people look forward to and cherish. Without sounding too much like a hipster, coffee has become a real touchstone for many people.


The term ‘speciality coffee’ has been flung around more in the last few years than ever,s o, what makes speciality coffee so special? Speciality coffee is defined (by the Speciality Coffee Association) as ‘any coffee with a score of 80+ on the Q graders scoring system’ (sounds fancy) and takes into account the origin of the coffee and its growing process. Basically, it’s a fancy way of saying this coffee is top tier. 


Over the last few years there has been a shift in the coffee industry with many people now seeking out independent roasters, producers and cafes. It goes without saying that the best coffee in Bristol can be found off the beaten track. Skipping your Starbucks and Cafe Nero’s to discover hidden gems, fuelled by a sense of community and a real passion for their craft. The humble coffee shop becomes a meeting place for like minded people and a community space for the local area. 

In Bristol you find not only amazing coffee shops but also a great selection of independent coffee roasters and producers. This pairing leads to a really special and bespoke coffee culture in the city.  

Here’s a guide to some of the best coffee spots in town.


Spicer & Cole

Kicking off the list we have Spicer & Cole, a particular favourite of the Runway East team.  Just a four minute walk from Runway East Bristol Bridge, it's the perfect spot to grab a quick coffee on the way to work or if you’re needing an escape from the desk. Their famous South American roast is brewed down the road at Extract Coffee Roasters. Their combination of beans from Columbia, Peru and El Salvador leads to a truly unique flavour profile in an espresso that packs a punch. If you’re feeling peckish they have an extensive menu and prepare all food in house.


Baristas Coffee Collective Bristol

Baristas Coffee Collective

Next up on the list is Baristas Coffee Collective. A community driven cafe, pop in here to get a taste of true Bristolian hospitality. Two minutes from Runway East Temple Meads you’ll be sure to feel like a regular upon your first visit. The team here excel at creating a welcoming environment.  Enjoy a chat over a gorgeous flat white and try one of their famous Oreo brownies while you’re at it.


Small Street Espresso

A fan of drinking your coffee in a cosy nook?  Small Street Espresso is the spot for you. Tucked away in the old city, Small Street Espresso prides itself on not only its amazing espresso but also gorgeous filter coffees. With their house roast produced by Clifton Coffee, you are getting a true taste of Bristol. Alongside their coffee, they have fresh bread and cakes baked daily local to Bristol. 


Hart's Bakery

Hart's Bakery

Taking a trip over to the other side of the city, you will find Hart’s Bakery. Nestled in the Temple Quarter, Hart’s is one of the most popular coffee spots with Bristolians. Upon visiting, it becomes apparent why. The open plan cafe with communal seating areas creates a warm atmosphere and the open kitchen fills the space with the scent of freshly baked goods. Speaking of, if you do pop in, you’ve got to try their famed sausage rolls. Their coffee is second to none with them rotating roasts every few months. Again, their roast is produced locally from Extract Coffee Roasters and source all their dairy from Bruto Dairy out of Somerset. 


Coffee Box

Coffee Box

If it’s a quick fix on the go you are in need of. Swing by Coffee Box, located three minutes from our Temple Meads site. It’s a perfect spot to grab a coffee in a hurry. Situated in a converted horse box (all the rage these days). Coffee Box pumps out hundreds of coffees a day along with delicious pastries baked by the owner Ben John’s wife. 


Ruby Hue Chocolate Maker's

Ruby Hue Chocolate Maker's

For those after something a little sweeter, venture over to Ruby Hue Chocolate Makers. A modern day chocolate factory set in the city, they produce all their own chocolate and operate a cafe also. Famous for their hot chocolate, it’s a great spot if you’re in need of your weekly sweet treat. The coffee is banging also. Ran by Ruth and Tom, it's a real labour of love. 


Origin Coffee

Origin Coffee

To finish off the list we have Origin Coffee. One of the new kids on the block, opening in October 2023. Origin has already made quite the impression with the locals. With its sleek interiors and design, Origin is the perfect spot to bring those cool clients who need impressing. Just a three minute walk from Runway East Bristol Bridge, it’s ideal for lunchtime meetings or a quick flat white on the way to the office.

Didn't see your favourites on the list? Check us out on instagram and let us know who we may have missed @runway_east.