Beijing’s Best Cafes

Article by Lost Plate Food Tours

Published on September 28, 2019

Coffee culture isn’t strong (or native) in China, but this list of Beijing’s best cafes will have you thinking otherwise. Criteria for our list considered all of the following: good coffee, decent wifi, comfortable vibe, and clean bathrooms.

Metal Hands Coffee Co.

Who doesn’t love a good local coffee chain? With 4 locations in Beijing, Metal Hands Coffee Co. is the worst kept secret gem in the city. We love the location near Qianmen Station, an old western style brick building with a good amount of seating and a gorgeous interior. Order the latte, sit back, and take let the hours pass. And for any sweet tooths out there: this place has some of the best Western desserts in Beijing. Incredibly photogenic confectionary delights range between 40-60 RMB, from 4-layer mousse cakes to a complex chocolate cake with a powdery gray outside, milk-chocolate middle, and orange-cream center.  

The coffee menu is refreshingly typical to higher-end international coffee houses; hand drip/cold brew single-origin coffees range from 45/50 RMB to 68/73 RMB respectively depending on the quality. Espresso-based classics mainly hover at 30RMB, with hot lattes, cappuccinos, and flat whites listed at that price.  Side note: the toilet isn’t well maintained, and it isn’t Western-style. Do with that information as you see fit. 

Open daily from 10:30 AM to 9 PM.

Location 1: Qianmen Branch

Address: West Damochang Street #228. Accessible by Qianmen subway station on Line 2.
Show Your Taxi Driver: 西打磨厂街228号
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese Map

Location 2: Wudaoying Branch

Address: No.61 Wudaoying Hutong. Accessible by  Lama Temple subway station on Line 2 or Line 5.
Show Your Taxi Driver: 五道营胡同61号
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese Map

Bear Brew Coffee

We like this spot so much we’ve made it a stop on our Beijing Hutong Breakfast Tour! Completely off the beaten path in the heart of a residential hutong neighborhood, Bear Brew is owned by friendly locals and has a wonderful rooftop patio with great hutong views of the Miaoying Temple. The coffee is tasty, the vibe is great and and the views could inspire you to poetry. 

The menu features all the greats across espresso coffees and cold brews, and they also have their own 24-hour cold brew with Coca-Cola drink, as well as a the Dirty, which is a fresh espresso poured over iced milk. The owners are fantastic people with great English, so warm welcomes and stellar hospitality are always a part of the Bear Brew experience. 

To find this spot, you’ll have to join us on our Beijing Hutong Breakfast Tour…click here for more info!


Opened in January of 2018, {Bracket} is located in a stand-alone building by the Workers Stadium in the Chaoyang district of northeast Beijing. A bit new to the Beijing coffee scene, {Bracket} is unlike the mom-and-pop or industrialist hipster places that are found throughout the city. It’s like if Starbucks franchised on the International Space Station. Sleek, chic, and almost futuristic, this place offers specialty coffees at affordable prices. This 2-story coffee shop opens up it’s rooftop patio for the warmer months, and they have a nice menu of coffees, teas, smoothies, and desserts all year round. They also offer the {Bracket} feast, a two-tier tower of high tea desserts, snacks and sandwiches for those who either can’t decide, or want to try a bit of everything. Order the latte or their tiramisu shake and a whiskey dark chocolate mousse and get a photo of it all from the roof. Espresso-based coffees range from about 35-55 RMB, but fancier fares like the Siphon coffee will cost you more. 

Open daily from 10:00AM-7:00PM

Address: Workers Stadium North Road. Accessible by the Dongsi Shitao subway station on Line 2 or the Tuanjiehu station on Line 10. 
Show Your Taxi Driver: 工人体育场北路3
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese Map 

Voyage Coffee

If you’re visiting the 798 Arts District, Voyage Coffee is a good spot to rest your feet and enjoy your surroundings. This minimalist space is tidy and attractive, an all-concrete shop with classical music blending well with the chatting of other patrons. The menu is also fairly simple and tidy, with three pour overs all at 35RMB, and the espresso menu covers all the bases ranging from 26RMB for an espresso to 33RMB for a cafe latte or flat white. They also offer chocolate cookies (12 RMB,) croissants (18 RMB,) tiramisu (35 RMB,) and affogatos (45RMB).  Despite the sparse no-frills menu, Voyage Coffee shines in their process.  If you order the pour over, it’s like an ASMR for the eyes: the filter, dripper, and container are all washed, the timer and scale ensured precision, and the pour over amount is generous, and in long slow circles.  

Outdoor seating is also available in the courtyard. We recommend the single origin pour over or the iced chocolate! Insiders tip – while the sparkling cold coffee may sound intriguing, it’s not recommended unless you like the idea of a carbonated coffee.

Open daily from 9AM to 9PM.

Address: 798 Art District Taoci 3rd Street #88. Not accessible by subway. 
Show Your Taxi Driver: 798艺术区陶瓷三街南口88号
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese Map

静水 StillWater

Success for many cafes in Beijing is measured by their ability to replicate cafes outside of China, typically in a Western fashion. Stillwater defies that metric- it truly is a cafe you could only find in Beijing. Its street entrance has heavy traditional wooden doors with iron dragon handles, opening into an aged stone hutong foyer, and its second-floor patio offers views of old-Beijing architecture. 

Among traditional Chinese decor, Stillwater offers a fine menu- the counter has a little pop-up cubbies with coffee beans for you to smell and choose from. Dutch coffees, pour overs, drips, and espresso based coffees range from 30-55RMB.  A fresh minty twist on an old classic, stop by StillWater and try their icy mint coffee! Boasting a sleek minimalist interior, floor-to ceiling windows on their ground floor, and an open terrace haven that offers a cool, quiet reprieve from the blistering heat of Beijing’s bustling summer.  

Open daily from 9 AM to 8 PM. 

Address: 69 Gulou East Street. Accessible by the Beixinqiao station on Line 5.
Show Your Taxi Driver: 鼓楼东大街69号
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese M


If you’re on the hunt for some authentic french pastries in the ‘jing, then look no further than this small slice of Paris nestled snugly in the Gulou scene, just minutes away from the Dongzhimen subway station. Croissants (16 RMB), baguettes, macaroons (12 RMB), brioches, and sandwiches are the main draw here, with excellent french-style coffees to accompany these buttery delights. Basic americanos start at 18RMB, while the menu tops out at cafe lattes at 33RMB. The brick exterior is reminiscent of a Parisian coffee break by the Seine, while the interior welcomes you with the scent of fresh baked breads and delightful confections, made by their very own certified patissiers. It also accepts local and foreign credit cards. 

Open daily from 7 AM to 7 PM.

Address: 1st Floor, Building 2, Microelectronics Office Building, 7 Xin Zhong Street. Accessible by the Dongzhimen subway station on Line 2 
Show Your Taxi Driver: 新中街7号微电子写字楼院内2号楼1层
Map: Google Map (VPN Required in China) or Chinese Ma

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