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Guide To Top Minsk Coffeeshops And Cafes By American Coffee Snob

Finding decent coffee when traveling isn’t always easy. Most of the time you end up either buying a burnt Americano from a corner bakery or shelling out for something a little better from the local hipster café – with mixed results. 

Braden Bjella, from Milwaukee, the U.S., who calls himself a snob when it comes to coffee, is here and ready to share coffee gems he found during his trip to Minsk.

Coffee was an immediate concern when I got to Minsk last year, mainly due to an early flight. As I wandered the city, I thought I was in trouble.

My first stops in Minsk set off my “bad coffee” alarm bells immediately, and after some exploring, I didn’t fare any better. Was I cursed with bland, lukewarm coffee for this whole trip?

No way. I would not stand for it. Finding Minsk’s best coffee became my mission, this trip’s raison d’être. After a heckuva lot of searching, here’s what I came up with.

Why knot?

I don’t know if I’m hip enough to drink at Why Knot?. With a white-and-wood interior set with hexagonal tables, it becomes immediately clear upon entering Why Knot? that you are in the presence of some of Minsk’s trendiest folks.

Art school students discuss upcoming projects across from Belarus’s answer to San Fran tech bros. Others sip wine as they read the news of the day from their phones; more still munch on one of the cafe’s delicious cakes or croissants.

 

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Публикация от WHY KNOT (@whyknotcoffee)

All of this would be fine and good even if the coffee wasn’t serviceable. But fear knot! (I am so sorry I will never do anything like that again). Why Knot? is actually the café front of Belarusian coffee brand Knot Coffee, one of the best roasters in the country.

The brand encourages transparency with its sourcing, telling buyers to #FollowYourCoffee. Coffee brewed with Knot beans is consistently good and, understandably, nowhere does it better than Why Knot?. We don’t really give gold stars around here, but if we did, Why Knot? would earn a big one.

Manufaktura

(temporarily closed for major repairs)

Manufaktura is widely regarded by locals as one of the best places to get coffee in the city. It’s also super central; if you’re looking to spend the day exploring Minsk’s historic downtown, you would be well off to start your day at Manufaktura.

There are plenty of coffee varieties on offer at Manufaktura for you to enjoy, from simple espresso shots to aeropress coffee and more.

 

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Additionally, their numerous cakes and snacks pair perfectly with your java. A delightfully rustic feeling café, Manufaktura is a great place to meet friends or to simply relax.

At the time of writing this, Manufaktura is currently closed for renovations. They anticipated reopening in the spring of 2019, but as spring has come and passed, it’s unclear when they will reopen.

Rest assured, posts from their Facebook indicate that this absence is only temporary, and visitors to Minsk will soon be able to again enjoy all of the coffee Manufaktura has to offer.

Zerno

We’re told that Zerno kicked off Minsk’s contemporary café culture, and with this rich history it’s no wonder that this café’s coffee is so delightful.

 

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Публикация от Зерно (@cafezerno)

A cozy little shop, Zerno sets itself apart with not only its coffee, but its cakes and pastries – for my part, I can personally vouch for their quiches.

An ever-changing array of local artists populate Zerno’s walls, making for a simple yet inspired café experience.

Seadog&Friends

Seadog&Friends is the specialty coffee house roasting the beans of Seadog Coffee, another Belarusian coffee roaster.

Of course, the coffee at Seadog&Friends is brilliant – the perfect smoothness expertly served – but there’s a joy in Seadog&Friends that you really can’t find anywhere else in Minsk.

 

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Публикация от SEADOG&FRIENDS (@seadogfriends)

Chalk it up to the colorful sea lion motif on the wall, or maybe the café’s brightly colored cakes and pastries, but sitting and drinking a coffee at Seadog satisfied a very base level need.

My previous few days had been chaotic; stopping for a coffee in Seadog provided a brief but much-needed respite. I can’t recommend them enough!

Two other coffee spots and a bonus one with greasy, cheap, and delicious sandwiches – check out at Braden’s I Am Here Too website.

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