Vote in RALtoday’s coffee shop bracket

We want to know: Where is the best place to grab coffee in the Raleigh area? Vote for your favorite to help determine a champion in our coffee shop bracket.

Someone is holding onto the handle of a coffee mug — a latte sits in the blue mug.

What’s your favorite coffee around Raleigh?

Photo by RALtoday

With the NCAA Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournaments just around the corner, we’re joining the fun of bracket competitions with a faceoff of our own.

Last year, you helped us name the best brewery: Funguys Brewing. This year, we asked you to share your favorite coffee shop in Raleigh. Now — thanks to you and the help of a random generator we have the official lineup for our bracket.

A bracket pitting Raleigh coffee shops against each other.

What’s your favorite coffee shop in Raleigh?

Graphic by 6AM City

Who’s in the running

Going head-to-head in the first round are:

  • The Left Hook Coffee and Sir Walter Coffee | The Left Hook proudly roasts its own beans in small batches in neighborhood bar Gussie’s, and Sir Walter roasts + serves its own beans as well in a prime spot in downtown Raleigh.
  • Jubala Coffee and Black & White Coffee Roasters | Jubala boasts inventive brews + fan-favorite food offerings, and Black & White serves a perfect mocha paired with its roasted blends, thanks to Videri.
  • NoRa Cafe and Bad Cat Coffee Co. | NoRa is a North Raleigh staple open later than the rest, and Bad Cat is a smaller operation in Morgan Street Food Hall.
  • Sola Coffee Cafe and The Optimist Raleigh | Sola’s food + snacks can’t be beat, and we love the moody ambiance of local haunt The Optimist.


Welcome back to our RALtoday coffee shop bracket, where we’re asking you to determine the best coffee shop in Raleigh.

After our initial rounds of votes, we’re down to two “teams” left:

  • Jubala Coffee | City Editor Allie here. Jubala is a personal favorite in Raleigh and is a real place for connection. Everything from a plain latte to seasonal espresso tonics — my usual order — are made well, and the service is always top notch. Don’t forget a sweet biscuit with country ham, egg, and cheese for breakfast.
  • Sola Coffee Cafe | City Editor Cat here. Sola was the very first coffee shop I frequented in Raleigh. My favorite thing, other than the shop’s killer cappuccinos + Sola BLT sandwich, is the community this cafe boasts. Plus, its outdoor space is the perfect spot to catch up with new and old friends.
RALtoday's coffee shop bracket winner is Jubala Coffee.

Jubala has three locations in Raleigh.

Graphic by 6AM City


And the bracket winner isJubala Coffee, voted best coffee shop in Raleigh by our readers and social media followers in our RALtoday coffee shop bracket.

Serving modernistic vibes, the coffee used in this hip Raleigh shop’s specialized beverages is roasted by Black & White Coffee Roasters. Along with inventive + classic sips, this cafe also boasts a delicious food menu featuring items like scratch-made biscuits.

We want to extend a major “thank you” to all of you for participating in our bracket challenge the past few weeks. We’ve had a blast seeing how the votes shook out, and we hope you did too. Looking for more coffee shops around town? Check out our guide.

How it works

Beginning today, we will host several voting rounds within our newsletters and social channels to determine Raleigh’s best coffee shop. Who moves on is up to you.

Vote for your favorites, and the coffee shop with more votes moves on. Simple as that. We’ll go until we have a champion, which will be announced in our Wednesday, March 27 newsletter. You will be able to vote once per round.

How to participate

Vote for the coffee shop you’d like to see win using this poll. Once we count all the votes, we’ll share the grand champion coffee shop.

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