Hackney Cafe Guide: Best Coffee Shops and Brunch Spots in East London

Hackney is a borough in East London that is known for its vibrant coffee scene. The area is home to numerous coffee shops that offer a perfect combination of East-End charm and top-quality coffee. From stunning baked goods to breakfasts, brunches, and lunches, Hackney cafes have something for everyone.

Singling out the best cafes in Hackney is a nigh-impossible task, given the sheer number of options available. However, one thing is for sure – visitors won’t need to look far to satisfy their cravings. In this article, readers will discover the very best cafes Hackney has to offer, along with practical tips to help them make the most of their visit.

Key Takeaways

  • Hackney is home to a vibrant coffee scene that offers a perfect combination of East-End charm and top-quality coffee.
  • Visitors will find numerous coffee shops in Hackney that offer stunning baked goods, breakfasts, brunches, and lunches to die for.
  • This article will provide readers with a guide to the best cafes in Hackney, along with practical tips to help them make the most of their visit.

The Best Cafes in Hackney

Dark Arts Coffee

Dark Arts Coffee is a popular roastery located in the east of Hackney Central. It has gained a reputation for its ethically-sourced coffee beans and expertly crafted drinks. The cafe has a unique atmosphere with edgy branding throughout the shop. They offer a rotating selection of single-origin coffees and unique blends, which are available to buy and take away or order from their online shop. Dark Arts Coffee is easily a top-5 contender for the best coffee in Hackney.

Palm Vaults London

Palm Vaults London is an Instagram-worthy cafe located on Mare Street. The cafe’s beautiful pastel color scheme and funky decor make it an awesome aesthetic. They offer a range of speciality lattes, including their famous pink beetroot latte and lavender latte. The cafe also has an apparel range. Palm Vaults has partnered with Dee’s Basement to deliver sublime baked goods and treats.

Climpson & Sons Café

Climpson & Sons Café is an artisanal Hackney cafe located on Broadway Market. Established in 2002, it has established an excellent reputation with shed loads of good reviews. The cafe offers superb coffees, beautiful pastries, bread, and sweet treats. Climpson & Sons Café also has its own coffee liqueur, Midnight Oil, which won an IWSC Bronze medal.

21 SID

21 SID is an Italian coffee shop that offers a stunning array of treats, cakes, and quality baked goods. They are incredible bakers and craft sublime bespoke cakes, which you can see on their Instagram. The cafe is known for its delicious cookies and quality baked goods. 21 SID is definitely one of the best places in Hackney to get some Italian coffee.

E5 Bakehouse

E5 Bakehouse is an artisan bakery and cafe located under the railway arches in London Fields. They serve coffee, drinks, cakes, and pastries galore, including the E5 croissant. The cafe has its own farm, Fellows Farm, in Suffolk, and they mill their own flour, so they can trace ingredients from the source. The kitchen serves excellent breakfasts and lunches, all with fresh ingredients directly from the farm. E5 Bakehouse is one of the most renowned coffee shops in East London.


Grow is more than a cafe, it’s a proper grassroots hangout spot, cafe, restaurant, and cultural hub with gigs, open mic nights, Sunday Brunch n’ Beats, and art, creative and social events. It’s a massive venue with a mezzanine, garden terrace, greenhouse, and indoor warehouse. The Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean-inspired menu is bursting with fresh, sustainably sourced dishes, with a plentiful selection of hot, cold, and alcoholic beverages. Grow is probably the coolest cafe in Hackney Wick and probably the coolest cafe in Hackney.

Bungalows Cafe London

Bungalows Cafe London is a proper greasy spoon cafe that doesn’t mess about, with big breakfasts served with top-quality coffee. The Full English and other breakfasts from the Set Breakfast menu are substantial and cooked to perfection. Bungalows Cafe London is definitely better than your average greasy spoon coffee shop, but without compromising on fry-up breakfasts.

Well Street Kitchen London

Well Street Kitchen London is a lovely cafe and restaurant that offers superb coffees with breakfast baps, then brunch, lunch/evening menu with fresh gnocchi, fish, lamb rump, and mac and cheese. They have tons of specials and rotating guest food, including the likes of Sobe Burger. Well Street Kitchen London is a top spot for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Pophams – London Fields

Pophams – London Fields is a small chain with insanely good pastries, artisan coffee, and a pasta menu for lunch and dinner. The savoury pastries and toasties are incredible, including a highly rated ham and cheese croissant, jalapeno toastie, and bacon and maple swirl. Their new pasta menu offers fresh, homemade pasta like casoncelli, doppio ravioli, and cannelloni. Pophams – London Fields has quickly developed an outstanding reputation and is definitely among the best cafes in Hackney.

The Bodega 50

The Bodega 50 is a cosy Stoke Newington cafe, a family-run establishment, and a local favourite for many years. They offer a range of ethically sourced coffee, homemade cakes, and sandwiches. It’s a no-frills cafe with reasonable prices and a wide assortment of breakfasts. The cafe is dog-friendly too.

Ozone Coffee Roasters

Ozone Coffee Roasters is an established coffee roaster and cafe with a great venue in Hackney. The Hackney venue provides Ozone’s artisanal range of expertly brewed coffee drinks, made with beans roasted in-house

Hackney Cafe Guide: Practical Tips

  • Expect these popular cafes to be crowded on weekends, so booking a table may not be possible. Opting for takeout instead can save time and disappointment.
  • For coffee enthusiasts, some of these cafes offer beans for sale. If you enjoy the coffee you’re drinking, don’t hesitate to ask about purchasing a bag to take home.

Read More Hackney Guides

For those looking to explore Hackney further, there are several guides available to help plan your trip. From an insider’s guide to the best things to do in Hackney, to a list of the best bars for a boozy adventure, there is something for everyone. Catch a flick at one of East London’s best cinemas or check out the Columbia Road Flower Market for a floral extravaganza.