San Diego's 10 Best Local Coffee Shops to Work & Study

Insights / 09.27.2019
Red Door /

7/26/2023 9:07:37 PM Red Door Interactive http://www.reddoor.biz Red Door Interactive

Whether you’re traveling for business, working remotely, or looking for a good place to study, there is no shortage of amazing coffee shops for you to breathe in the scent of rich, espresso-filled air while grinding out your to-do list. Need help narrowing down your options? As coffee lovers ourselves, we’ve put together a list of 10 local coffee spots to try, complete with our top drink, food, and seating choices to help guide your decisions.

*Quietness level is subjectively graded on a scale from 1-10.
1: You are wondering if you're still at a coffee shop or if you've stumbled into an EDM festival.
10: The only thing you can hear is your own thoughts.

Downtown / Little Italy

Coffee & Tea Collective

  • Favorite drink: Raleigh Latte. This is a twist on your common latte, with a blend of orange and cinnamon for a nice, sweet flavor. 
  • Favorite food: Caprese Sandwich (Tip: add Prosciutto).
  • Best spot to sit: Cozy work vibes are in the upstairs balcony!
  • Quietness level: 9 - Escape the hustle and bustle of Downtown by popping into their new location on the corner of 7th & J street.

Holy Matcha

  • Favorite drink: Coconut Matcha – it's like sipping on a Hawaiian vacation. 
  • Favorite food: Waffles (P.S. they are gluten-free & vegan!).
  • Best spot to sit: The flower wall makes for a refreshing study environment and a great place to snap a #workselfie
  • Quietness level: 9 – The Downtown location is a hidden gem if you need a quiet, lowkey workspace. 

Portal Coffee

  • Favorite drink: Iced Matcha and Chai Latte – It’s literally both. You don’t have to choose anymore!
  • Favorite food: Mediterranean Avocado Toast – not your typical avo toast.
  • Best spot to sit: The deck has lots of comfy seating options, but if you need to charge your laptop or phone, try an inside table near the back.
  • Quietness level: 8 - Quiet, but not TOO quiet.

Bean Bar

  • Favorite drink: Samoa Cold Brew. Who says Girl Scout cookies are only for eating?
  • Favorite food: Their Wayfarer bread makes any of their toasts an excellent choice.
  • Best spot to sit: Snag a window seat for some natural lighting.
  • Quietness level: 9 – The only noise you’ll need to drown out is the sound of you sipping the last drop of your cold brew.



Photo by Yelp user Kimberly K.

North Park / South Park

Better Buzz

  • Favorite drink: Best Drink Ever (yes, that’s really the name). 
  • Favorite food: Acai Bowl. If you want it less sweet, ask for it to be made with almond milk.
  • Best spot to sit: If you need to charge your laptop, the only outlets are located upstairs. Otherwise, the benches downstairs are a great spot to camp out for the afternoon. This place is always busy, so the early bird gets the best seat!
  • Quietness level: 3 – Music and chatter can get quite loud at lunchtime. If you have noise-canceling headphones, bring them. 

Communal Coffee

  • Favorite drink: Sea Salt Caramel Latte.
  • Favorite food: Veggie Bagel Sandwich.
  • Best spot to sit: Grab a table on their outdoor patio for some fresh air and mental focus. 
  • Quietness level: 6 – Other than some outside traffic, this spot is fairly quiet year-round. 

Young Hickory

  • Favorite drink: Oat Milk Cappuccino. Oat milk anything, really.
  • Favorite food: Breakfast Sandwich with avocado.
  • Best spot to sit: For optimal focus, grab the back booth.
  • Quietness level: 2 - Great atmosphere, lively and invigorating. If you like to work remotely to feel social and get work done, this is the place.

Lestat's on Adams

  • Favorite drink: Any of the basics!
  • Favorite food: House Sandwich.
  • Best spot to sit: It’s like a funhouse with the assortment of chairs, but the best seats for focusing are in the second large room along the wall where the plugs are located.
  • Quietness level: 5 – Generally a good mix of chit-chat and quiet.



Photo by Yelp user Jessica C.

Pacific Beach

Bird Rock

  • Favorite drink: Cold Brew.
  • Favorite food: Housemade Almond Croissant.
  • Best spot to sit: Soak in the ocean breeze by sitting at a bench or table on the front patio. 
  • Quietness level: 7 – For being in PB, this coffee shop is actually a great space to crank out some work during the week. 

Brick & Bell Cafe

  • Favorite drink: Spiced Chai Latte.
  • Favorite food: Chicken Grape Salad. It’s chicken, it’s grapes, it’s delicious.
  • Best spot to sit: Feel at home while working remotely by sitting at an outside picnic table.
  • Quietness level: 5 – There are usually groups meeting for lunch, but lots of people working on their laptops, as well.



Photo byYelp user Keung Ae L. 

At Red Door Interactive, we love that we have the flexibility to work remotely when we need to, and can explore new places across San Diego. The next time you need a change of work scenery, stop by one of these local favorites and let us know what you think by sending us a message on any of our social channels linked below.

Did we miss your favorite spot? Make sure to share your go-to coffee shop recommendations with us by tagging #RDICoffeeCulture.

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