Thursday, March 15, 2012

Best Cafes to Work From in NYC

Ahh, the startup life. When I first moved to New York, which, frighteningly, was almost a year ago now, I lacked both office space and an apartment suitable for working from home. Well, this is New York, so figuring this city has everything (if you know where you look) I set about hunting for the best coffee shops to make into my offices on the go. I did eventually get a permanent office (I work out of WeWork Labs), but not before spending a good few months trying as many coffee shops as possible.

I've compiled a list of a few of my favorites. They meet the criteria of having decent coffee, good (free) wifi, reasonable food, and most importantly staff that don't mind if you camp out for a little while.

Grounded
28 Jane St (West Village)
Wifi: strong and consistent, and the staff is willing to reboot the router if it goes down
Outlets: some
Coffee: good
Food: average
Tip: can get crowded sometimes and though there is technically a time limit for the seats no one follows it

Think Coffee
248 Mercer Street (Greenwich Village)
Wifi: sometimes spotty
Outlets: few
Coffee: good
Food: good
Tip: this is an NYU study spot, so it's huge, open late, and the staff is used to people camping out there all day. note: there are multiple think coffee locations but this is the only one with wifi (to my knowledge).

Birch Coffee
5 East 27th Street (Flatiron)
Wifi: requires a code which expires after an hour
Outlets: many
Coffee: good
Food: good, but they stop serving it early-ish
Tip: what makes this place great is the upstairs library. it's super cute, very quiet, and a great place to disappear to get work done without interruption

Soy Cafe
115 Greenwich Ave (West Village)
Wifi: consistent, strong
Outlets: many
Coffee: good
Food: delicious!
Tip: this place is great to go if you're in the mood for a snack. it does get crowded in the later afternoons, so get there early.

Aroma Espresso Bar
161 West 72nd Street (Upper West Side)
Wifi: requires a code which expires after an hour
Outlets: few
Coffee: good
Food: good
Tip: Upstairs has comfy couches, but the real gem is the upstairs back patio (weather permitting).

The final option, which I list only as a last resort, is Starbucks. There are many of them, they all have free wifi, they work in a pinch.

What's your favorite?