How we find coffee places

Our goal is to find and rate all specialty coffee places in the world. That is easier said than done.

The first and not trivial step is to identify specialty coffee shops. There are three primary ways how a specialty coffee place ends up on

  1. We research the coffee place ourselves (primarily by not leaving a single stone unturned on Google Maps)
  2. We ask coffee professionals and fellow coffee addicts for their favorite coffee places (any barista we meet for the first time is a chance for us to inquire which shops they personally consider as stellar - a heartfelt thank you to all the baristas who so kindly share their knowledge all the time)
  3. Readers and users of suggest their favorite coffee places to us (we are thankful for every single submission)

However, not every self-designated specialty coffee place we find on Google Maps makes it to our final list. Over the last years, we have developed a multi-stage selection process to identify those coffee places that indeed make specialty coffee from specialty beans. Some of the aspects we assess are the very beans that the coffee is made from (roaster, origin, etc.). We also assess the gear used to make the coffee. A professional espresso machine for sure helps, but we have already seen too many pseudo-hip places that put commodity coffee in their beautiful Spirit or Slayer (and we feel sorry for these machines). At the same time, we feature several outstanding specialty coffee places that do not even own an espresso machine because they focus on hand filters.

You see, this process is not trivial, and we take this task seriously. A side note: An assortment of pumps with industrial syrup in the back of the bar is no checkmate, but it certainly makes us worry and a little bit suspicious. If you would like to know more about our processes, please send a message to