Currency Exchange

Coffee shops double as second offices for many of us who travel or are remote professionals. There's nothing better than working in a space with tasty beans, yummy snacks, comfortable seating and a creative environment. Here are some great options (that I've personally experienced) to provide whatever vibe you may be craving so you can breeze through your to-do list.


Efebinas Cafe (1640 S. Blue Island Ave.)

Efebinas Cafe

This fun Pilsen cafe offers up big fluffy couches and easy-to-nibble food with an ethnic flair. Plus, they provide a 15 percent discount for students.  For those not in the mood for coffee, they have rich abuelita hot chocolate.

Must try: Colombian arepa: a warm, thick tortilla loaded with cheese, veggies and your choice of meat.


Vera Chicago (1023 W. Lake St.)

Vera Chicago

This West Loop wine bar that offers sharable plates doubles as a coffee cafe during the day. You can start with a delicious pour over and, after your work is done, toast to your success with a glass of wine from Spain, other parts of Europe, and the Americas. 

Must try: The Escalivada (roasted vegetables, whipped goat cheese) with a side of thick, crusty bread.


La Colombe (955 W. Randolph St., 1552 N. Damen Ave., 5158 N. Clark St.)

Yep, it's Monday. But #DraftLatte is now pouring in all of our Chicago cafés, so it works out. #LaColombeChicago ??: @adamsoko

A photo posted by La Colombe Coffee Roasters (@lacolombecoffee) on

If you need to disconnect from the Internet and get some writing or reading time in, while enjoying a serious cup of java, this warm, open coffee shop is a perfect pick.

Must try: The drip coffee. You can taste the care (these are coffee craftspeople).

Eva's Cafe (1447 N. Sedgwick St.)

Eva's Cafe

An afternoon here is like sipping coffee at your favorite aunt's house. All the chairs are comfy, the WiFi is strong, the sandwiches are tasty, and in case you have a pooch, it is dog-friendly.

Must try: Their "dirty" chai (a chai tea latte with a shot or two of expresso). They do them deliciously.


Currency Exchange Cafè (305 E. Garfield Blvd.)

Currency Exchange

This funky, artistic space is crafted from repurposed materials and, for a nod to the history of the building, includes the hand-painted currency exchange sign from the former tenants.  Parking is easy, the Internet is reliable, and the staff is friendly. Guests are also welcome to check out the café's crowing collection of books, a really unique feature. 

Must try: The Southern-meets-Mexican influenced lunch menu (especially the collard greens).


Photos: Currency Exchange (at top) via Instagram; Efebinas Cafe via Facebook; Vera Chicago by Jetta Bates; Eva's Cafe via Facebook; Currency Exchange via Facebook