1. Birch Coffee, 21 East 27th St. (Other location at 56th 7th Ave)
Birch Coffee, which used to be located in the now-closed, Gaudi-esque Gershwin Hotel, just moved a few blocks down from there. With its wooden furnishings and exposed brick, as well as a bookshelf corner and a bar opposite windows, it’s definitely one of the homier coffee shops in Manhattan.
Choose a free book left behind by one of your fellow coffee drinkers, or leave one behind for the ones to come. Birch features monthly single-brew coffees and serves local and sustainable food as well, though it’s on the pricey side ($10 + for some sandwiches) for coffee shop fare. With coffee selections varying by season, Birch offers high-quality food in addition to a pleasing, quirky atmosphere.