The Best Coffee Shops in Knoxville, TN for Coffee Lovers

10 Best Coffee Places in Knoxville, TN

If you are local or just visiting Knoxville, it is important to have a wonderful coffee experience if you are a coffee lover like myself. Sure, you could pass through a Starbucks or Dunkin’, but if you want a true, local, Knoxville experience than I can recommend to you the best coffee shops in Knoxville, TN. 


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Top Coffee Shops in Knoxville

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My first recommendation on this list is Capybara Coffee. I put this first on this list because this is the best coffee that you can get in Knoxville. This small, local coffee shop can be found right across from the University of Tennessee campus near the Tennessee River. The atmosphere is super lively since it is located right near the heart of a major university. While it may be small, there is still plenty of room to sit and use the Wi-Fi. Seating options include tables, lounge chairs, and outside seating. 

As far as the coffee goes, a simple cup of coffee has fantastic flavor and is brewed fresh along being toasted. Their hits are their specialty coffees, lattes, and americanos. Everything is great, but one area to improve with this coffee shop may be their cold brew. When you are deciding on what to order, their daily recommendations are written up on clipboards so be sure to check to the side along with the main menu. They may be offering CBD additions, along with seasonal specialties.

Located in the heart of downtown Knoxville, K-Brew offers customers a great selection of coffee. K-Brew is also greatly known for their bagels so be sure to experience one with your coffee. 

When they opened their downtown location in 2019, they opened at the entrance of the Hilton Hotel. In addition to this location K-Brew has 3 other locations around Knoxville. The Hilton lobby also features fine southern dining, a top golf simulator, spa, and cafe.

Because of its popularity and quality, they do get quite busy from time to time, but still are able to serve customers with great tasting lattes and other coffee beverages. It seats up to 30 people, but since it is located in the Hilton lobby, there are many other locations for you to take your cup in case tables are full. This makes it one of the best coffee shops in Knoxville. 

This coffee shop is located in Northern Knoxville on S Central Street and is known as a community driven coffee shop. Old City Java’s menu features coffee, espresso, tea, matcha, and even kombucha. Although, their pastries could be featured on their own.

The staff here is very friendly and will treat you as if you were a local yourself. Along with drinking your coffee here, Old City Java offers free Wi-Fi for guests so this is the perfect place to be able to work, study or have a meeting. If you’re not a fan of a modern setting, this place is for you. The quirky feel has many repeat customers coming back to this location.

South Press Coffee is a locally sourced coffee shop located on the outskirts of Knoxville south of the Tennessee River. It is near the Fort Dickerson Quarry. South Press was opened by a local entrepreneur and has been open since 2020 where it has been a local hub for LGBTQ communities. 

South Press was opened due to the rise of bars and alcohol based locations. The owner, Joslynn Fish, wanted a space where people could be social without alcohol. 

This coffee shop is great for groups who want an area to hangout in. Families, friends, and all others are welcome as this space is very inclusive to all kinds of people. Along with being a great space for socialization, the coffee here is top notch itself. While they have flavorful roasts, they also have a WIDE selection of specialty coffees and teas so you can be adventurous in your coffee taste.

Cultivate is a wonderful coffee shop but also doubles as a place where you can buy your flowers at their floral bar. You can find cultivate near Fountain City, which is north of Knoxville on N Broadway Street.

The team at Cultivate Coffee & Flowers ensure that their inventory is locally sourced and they take pride in being a hyperlocal shop. Even better, they are run by a non-profit that dedicates its proceeds to fighting human trafficking. You can find coffee, espresso, tea, matcha, and more here. They do have a drive-thru if you are in a rush, but then you would be missing out on the interior experience and great atmosphere.

Remedy is located on the northern side of Knoxville right across from the Knoxville National Cematery. The atmosphere at Remedy has more of a modern feel to it. They have less options to order form, which makes them very knowledgable in what they do serve. 

One of the reasons I list this as one of the best coffee shops in Knoxville is because of their latte. Their latte is one of the best I’ve ever had and many agree with this opinion. Make sure to get off the main roads to visit the local coffee shop in Knoxville so that you can experience their lattes. If you’re not a fan of lattes, anything on their menu is still great!

Another plus of this coffee shop is that its mainly a local hangout, meaning tourists will not find this place as easily. This gives is a quite atmosphere for working, studying, or having a conversation.

Mahalo weighs in at a 4.5 out of 5 stars in their Yelp rating. Like the other coffee shops on this list, Mahalo has a small indoor area, but the shop is well-equipped to handle a crowd. The staff does a great job at getting orders out fast!

There is one location in the heart of downtown Knoxville, but there are also two other areas that you can try their wonderful coffee at. You can also head to their website and place an order to ship their coffee straight to your house.

Awaken is a cozy coffee shop with pastries and games that is located on the northern side of Knoxville. 

Awaken has a wide variety of specialty drinks for their customers. Some of these include:

  • Polar Bear
  • Chickory Iced Coffee
  • Rose Matcha Latte
  • Almond Joy Latte
  • Irish Creme Breve
Among these drinks, their regular coffee is delightful and the go-to spot in the Old City District if you are a local or if you ever have a chance to travel through the city of Knoxville.

Honeybee coffee has placed locations throughout Knoxville so that you are never too far away to enjoy this local coffee shop. Included in some of their best drinks are their dirty chai latte, Ethiopian cold brew, and the iced latte. They do get busy, so it may be best to avoid this shop during peak times. However, this just points out how great this place is with the locals. 

Along with their shops, Honeybee coffee has come out with a subscription service that arrives at your door so that you never run out of Honeybee coffee. 

Hey Bear Cafe is very different from others on this list. Hey Bear is the greatest local boba shop in Knoxville and has great options for tea and coffee. I, personally, am a lover of boba tea and love the bursting bubbles in my drinks. It is a great addition to coffee as well.

This is a great spot for families as well as there are activities for the kids and outdoor areas. Food trucks are a big hit for this restaurant and can either be located on store ground or can be found at local events!

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