Best cities in the US for coffee drinkers

Illy's Montgomery Street Café in San Francisco. Image credit: Kim White

Just in time for National Coffee Day on 29 September, the personal-finance website WalletHub has released its 2020 Best Coffee Cities in America report.

To determine the best local coffee scenes in America, WalletHub compared the 100 largest cities across 12 key indicators of a strong coffee culture. The data set ranges from coffee shops, coffeehouses and cafés per capita to the average price per pack of coffee (I have never heard the expression “price per pack of coffee” before). I admit I was surprised by some of the names on the list as well as by the rankings of others (it seems California is the state to be in if you are a coffee enthusiast). WalletHub did not say if it factored Covid-19 circumstances – that many coffeehouses and cafés could offer take-out service only due to pandemic – into its methodology.

Per WalletHub, the Top 10 Cities for Coffee Lovers in 2020 are:

  1. Seattle, WA 11. Minneapolis, MN
  2. San Francisco, CA 12. Orlando, FL
  3. Portland, OR 13. Washington, DC
  4. Miami, FL 14. Boston, MA
  5. Tampa, FL 15. Long Beach, CA
  6. Pittsburgh, PA 16. Los Angeles, CA
  7. Honolulu, HI 17. Irvine, CA
  8. Denver, CO 18. New Orleans, LA
  9. Oakland, CA 19. Austin, TX
  10. Atlanta, GA 20. Jersey City, NJ

In terms of pricing, WalletHub found that:

  • Miami and Hialeah, Florida, have the lowest average price for a pack of coffee, USD $3.44, which is 2.4 times lower than in Honolulu, the city with the highest at $8.10.
  • Fremont, California, has the highest average annual spending on coffee per household, USD $236.41, which is 3.7 times higher than in Detroit, the city with the lowest at $63.91.
  • Gilbert, Arizona, has the highest share of households that own a single-cup/pod-brewing coffee maker, 25.68 percent, which is 2.9 times higher than in Newark, New Jersey, the city with the lowest at 9.01 percent.
  • Orlando, Florida, has the most coffee shops, coffeehouses and cafés (per square root of population), 0.4571, which is 7.5 times more than in Laredo, Texas, the city with the fewest at 0.0611.
  • Portland, Oregon, has the most coffee and tea manufacturers (per square root of population), 0.0219, which is 43.8 times more than in Riverside and San Bernardino, California, the cities with the fewest at 0.0005.

Portland, Oregon topping the list for having the most coffee and tea manufacturers (per square root of population) is not surprising, but Orlando, Florida having the most coffee shops, coffeehouses and cafés (per square root of population) is. Detailed findings (highest and lowest average spending on coffee per household, highest and lowest percentage of adult coffee drinkers, highest and lowest number of households that own coffeemakers, most coffeehouses and cafés per capita, etc) and WalletHub’s methodology for determining the best coffee cities in America can be viewed here.

A list of coffee deals, specials and “freebies” on National Coffee Day (29 Sept) can be found here.

Happy java day!

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