Warm Up and Drink Up: 3 Must-Visit Coffee Spots in Chapel Hill

Warm Up and Drink Up: 3 Must-Visit Coffee Spots in Chapel Hill

If you ask me, there is nothing more perfect than a warm cup of coffee on a chilly, winter day. Chapel Hill is overflowing with cute, whimsical and quirky coffee shops. There are definitely the must-visit classic spots (like Carolina Coffee Shop), but this list just holds my personal favorite places.

Whether it’s their seasonal coffee selections, their books or their views, these three Chapel Hill coffee spots are absolutely essential for cozying up on a winter’s day. Throw in some beautiful Chapel Hill scenery, and you’ve got yourself some seriously aesthetic vibes. Each of these shops is still serving customers during COVID-19, but they’re still offering limited dine-in seating and take-out options.   

1. Epilogue: the Got-it-All Spot

chapel hill coffee shop epilogue
Image courtesy of Epilogue’s Instagram.

Located right in the heart of Chapel Hill’s campus, Epilogue is at 109 East Franklin Street. Whenever I’m walking around campus, I always make sure to stop in Epilogue – not only for the coffee and pastries, but also for its amazing selection of books. Independently owned and operated by Chapel Hill natives Miranda and Jaime Sanchez, Epilogue has quickly become a UNC staple since its opening last year.

It’s the perfect place to sit, sip, read, and relax. My personal favorite treats from behind its counter are the Vanilla Spice Latte and the chocolate chunk cookie. They are also well known for their drinking chocolates and churros – so try those out too!

2. Caffé Driade: the Secret Chapel Hill Coffee Spot

Image courtesy of Caffé Driade’s Instagram.

If you don’t already know about Caffé Driade, then you most definitely might miss its hidden location. Located at 1215 East Franklin Street, Caffé Driade is tucked away from the bustle of Chapel Hill. Its quiet, nature-centric location makes it an absolute must-visit treasure. With small tables set among its trees, it really feels like you’ve escaped Chapel Hill and ended up in the European countryside.

My go-to order is a chai latte, but I must tell you, the affogato is absolutely amazing. Affogato is most definitely an indulgence, thanks to its vanilla ice cream, one scoop of Ghirardelli chocolate and two shots of espresso. You seriously can’t go wrong with any of Caffé Driade’s options!

3. Summit Coffee Co.: the New Chapel Hill Spot

chapel hill coffee summit coffee co
Image courtesy of Summit Coffee Co.’s Instagram.

Located at 140 West Franklin Street, Summit Coffee Co. just opened its Chapel Hill location in October. But in its short lifetime, it has already become a fan favorite of UNC students!

Summit Coffee Co. as a brand has existed for quite a while. Its locations in Asheville and Davidson just celebrated their 22-year anniversaries. Summit’s Chapel Hill location has plenty of tables and space to spread out both inside and out. Every time that I drive by the shop, it is happily occupied by hard-working students and professionals. Everything on the menus is amazing, but my personal favorite is a chai latte with a shot of espresso.

Other Options for Coffee, Coffee and More Coffee

I have a couple other favorite coffee shops – like Namu and Honeysuckle Cafe and Bar – but they are technically in Durham and Carrboro. So, I’ll save details on those coffee spots for another day! For now, I recommend layering up in a chunky sweater, putting on your mask and heading out to any of these locations. Bring a book, grab a coffee and munch on a snack – you won’t be disappointed!

Don’t forget to check out our other coffee-centric articles, including our guides to your caffeine fixes in Winston-Salem and Asheville!