Caffe Driade

Go on a Caffeinated Tour of the Research Triangle

My name is Linda and I’m caffeine-dependent. Since moving to the Research Triangle area of North Carolina, I decided to use coffee as my way to get to know the area and the people. At first it was just a means to leave the apartment and not spiral deeper into my homesickness, and then it quickly evolved into a fun way to get to know the area and the locals. What resulted from my tour was a list of coffee spots to satisfy all coffee whims.

1. Bread & Butter

503 W Rosemary St, Chapel Hill, NC 27516

Bread & Butter

Bread & Butter is a cozy coffee shop and bakery in Chapel Hill, just minutes from the UNC campus. They have mismatched worn furniture, a greenhouse style window, and the best brioche. I hear their brioche cinnamon buns are worth a try too. With reliable wifi, quiet atmosphere, and plenty of table space, Bread & Butter is the wonderful place to hunker down with your projects.

2. Caffe Driade

1215 E Franklin St, Chapel Hill, NC 27514

Caffe Driade

I had Caffe Driade on my list of places to check out, unaware that I drive by it almost daily! Caffe Driade is tucked into a wooded oasis for you to sip, think, and feel. There are also wine and beer and pastries you can purchase. It’s a perfect date spot under the stars at night and a great pensive space during the day.

3. Cocoa Cinnamon

Multiple Locations

Cocoa Cinnamon

Cocoa Cinnamon has three unique locations and on my second day as a North Carolina resident, I went to two of them! The latest location has sugary churros and drinking chocolate. The churros come in unique flavors like orange and cardamon. I can’t wait to take myself out there for a solo date soon and try more of their lattes.

4. Parker & Otis

112 S Duke St, Durham, NC 27701

Park & Otis

I’m creating a list of places to take my family and friends when they come and visit.  Parker & Otis is on this list! Great spot for brunch, lunch, and breakfast. There’s a gift shop that I could spend hours in, perusing their stationary, journals, and knick knacks!  I just know a few of my girlfriends back home would adore this space.

Tip for your first time: there’s a counter to order your food and a separate coffee bar counter.

5. Morning Times

10 E Hargett St, Raleigh, NC 27601

Morning Times

When I polled the locals about what coffee shops are must-visits in Raleigh, every single one of them told me that Morning Times is a must. It’s adjacent to and associated with Raleigh Times, which is also a popular eatery in Raleigh. They have an iconic sign at their front doors that spell out COFEE in pretty pink neon and their maple lattes provide a cozy nod to the fall season.

6. Monuts

1002 9th St, Durham, NC 27705


I only sampled their donuts and lattes here and they were a delight! I hear that on the weekends there are long lines and crowds for weekend brunch. So if you’re looking for just an afternoon recharge, I recommend going on a weekday like I did! I especially liked their chocolate coconut cake donut which funnily wasn’t what I would have ordered. I let the cashier pick her favorite donut to add to my loot. So glad I did!

7. Guglhupf

2706 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd, Durham, NC 27707


A beloved cafe, bakery, and restaurant in Durham, Guglhupf is not only fun to try to pronounce but also fun to visit.  Guglhupf is popular for brunch and their dessert game is a strong one. Their leafy patio makes me happy!  Remember to stop by their attached bakeshop and pick up some croissants to take home! I enjoyed their chicken salad and look forward to going there for brunch!

8. Namu

5420 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd, Durham, NC 27707

Namu in Durham

What sets Namu apart from the rest of the coffee shops on this list is that they also serve Korean food alongside their lattes! Read more about my solo date to Namu here.

9. La Farm Bakery

248 NW Cary Pkwy, Cary, NC 27513

La Farm Bakery

If you love bread and pastries, I’m willing to bet you’ll love La Farm Bakery. I could smell the buttery breads and pastries from their parking lot!  I took myself on a lunch date there and only wanted to grab a coconut latte and croque madame, but the angelic server presented me a white chocolate baguette sample. After tasting it, I instantly added one to my order to take home with me. Usually white chocolate anything makes me cranky.  (CALL IT WHAT IT IS, “NOT CHOCOLATE”.)  But as soon as I tasted their white chocolate baguette I was hit with both joy and sadness. Joy to have experienced such heavenly delight, and sadness that I couldn’t make a life of eating their white chocolate baguettes.

10. Bean Traders

105 W North Carolina 54 #249, Durham, NC 27713

Bean Traders

Bean Traders make their pies in house and they have delicious and interesting coffee drinks to try. I had the habanero dark chocolate cold brew coffee to wash down my chocolate pie. This place was buzzing with happy people and activity.

11. The Pie Hole

810 9th St Suite 130, Durham, NC 27705

The Pie Hole Durham - Linda Eats World

Speaking of pies, if you’re obsessed with pies, there’s a place just for you here! The Pie Hole! Originally from LA, they recently expanded to Durham. I’ve missed their Shepherd’s Pie and Cereal Killer Pie since the moment I finished them off the last time I visited. Read more about them and gawk at the delicious photos on my dedicated blog post.

12. Sola

7705 Lead Mine Rd, Raleigh, NC 27615


Sola will always be special to me. It was my first coffee shop experienced when I came to the area a few months before moving here. I have a friend named Cassie I met online as a teen who turned into a penpal. We met each other for the first time at Sola. I’m so fortunate that seventeen years after meeting her online, we’re now just thirty minutes away from each other! Sola has a full menu and serves beer too! I quite liked their prosciutto sandwiches.

13. Blend & Co

127 E Front St, Burlington, NC 27215

Matcha Bowl at Blend & Co.

Tucked in the charming downtown of Burlington, North Carolina is Blend & Co. The light and airy space is Instagram friendly. And you can order smoothie bowls alongside your coffee. I’m going to be bold and say it. Smoothie bowls are better than smoothies! Blend & Co. also has a very cute mobile coffee trailer.

14. Jubala

Multiple locations


What makes Jubalya unique is their biscuits! What a pleasant and pillowy snack to have with your lattes. I got the peanut butter and honey biscuit. Their biscuits almost had the texture of a scone.

So that concludes my recent caffeinated tour of the Research Triangle area of North Carolina. Many thanks to these gems for giving me beautiful spaces to meet new friends, write in my journal, and crank out work.

Now back to you! Did I miss any of your favorites? Please leave a comment and enlighten me!

Follow my eating adventures and happenings on Instagram. You can also see what is catching my attention in the food world on Twitter and Facebook.

  • Great list!!! You definitely highlighted some of my faves! I’ll have to check out some of the others!!! I’ve never even heard of Namu, adding it to my list.

  • Great list! Oh gosh I have so many memories at these places – amazinggggg espresso shakes at Caffe Driade (perfect treat for after a long run in Carrboro and Chapel Hill!), the care and attention of Cocoa Cinnamon, perfect afternoons in downtown Durham at Parker & Otis, quick stops for donuts at monuts, field trips with my German major classes to Guglhupf (yup, we totally did that, nerds), long brunches at La Farm (if you liked their white chocolate baguettes you should try their white chocolate raspberry sweetbread O.M.G.!). And of course, if you’re at Bean Traders on a weekday morning there’s a good chance I’ll be there! :D Yup, all of these are favorites!

    • I think I need to befriend you, Liz!!

  • Ashleigh Gerock

    What a great list! I haven’t heard of a few of these places and will have to check them out. I do see a couple of my favorites as well! :)

  • Sarah Pearcy

    I have been to most of them. Great list. Try Crema in Cary. They do their own roasting and have a great bakery on site!

    • Added Crema to my list. Thanks Sarah!

  • So many good places on this list and so many I’ve never been too!! Now I have a good list of places to try!

  • Awesome list! I typically prefer tea, but I do like a cuppa Joe every now and then! My husband drinks about 3 cups of coffee daily so I will have to keep this list in mind for fun coffee/brunch dates!

    Thanks for sharing! :)


  • PS: The churros at Cocoa Cinnamon are yum!

  • Melissa Vera

    I so want to visit all of these on your list. Amazing spots

  • Always looking for a new coffee spot and there are so many on here I haven’t tried! So many options now!! Thanks for sharing!

  • I go to coffee shops CONSTANTLY and as I live in Cary, I haven’t hit very many of the ones you’ve mentioned in Chapel Hill and Durham so I’ll have to add them to my list. Bean Traders, Sola, Morning Times, and Jubala are all favorites. Other good ones to try are Cup a Joe and Global Village on Hillsborough Street in Raleigh – they both have a bit of an understated, grungy vibe that I love.

    • Haha. You got me at understated and grungy! Will have to check your recs out. Thanks for coming by and taking the time to comment!

  • Leslie

    Great list! My go tos just for proximity is Jubala, Solas if I am out and about or meeting up for coffee. My fave Barista however is my husband, He is all about the beans and grinding them himself and sometimes he uses his french press or he may do some other things. We collect coffee mugs and tea cups and its just our thing to enjoy at home.

    • How lucky to be married to a talented barista! ;)

  • Chelsea Turner Vanderpool

    These all sound great! My guilty pleasure is pastries and ice cream. Would love to find a coffee shop that puts scoops of ice cream in your coffee. I recently tried white oak coffee in west Cary at the new Taylor YMCA and it was so good. FYI, you don’t have to be a member to go to the coffee shop.

  • So many delightful snacks, too! I love that you’ve jumped right in to the coffee scene in your new hometown.

    And I share your feelings on white chocolate. IT’S A LIE!

    • It’s how I coped with homesickness ;)

      Haha. Glad you feel the same about white chocolate!

  • Lee

    You listed some of my favorite places, Parker & Otis, Guglhupf, and Monuts! I will have to try some of the other places. I keep a list of places to try for when friends or family are visiting. It makes it fun to try a new place together.
    xo, Lee

  • Man. Ive been here longer than you and I haven’t been to any of these places. I keep saying I’m gonna venture out and I never do