Finding the perfect cup of Joe


One of the joys of living in a college town is the myriad coffeehouses, designed for studying, friendly conversation, and early morning fueling.

The downtown Java House, 211 1/2 E. Washington St., is one of the most popular places for students, boasting a narrow but deep-set space, ambient lighting, couches, and a door to the neighboring Heritage restaurant. A locally owned business advertising itself as an “Iowa City ritual,” Java House frequently hosts readings and live performances, making it both a cafe and cultural center.

The High Ground Café, 301 E. Market St., is one of Iowa City's youngest small businesses. Floor to ceiling windows let in natural light, a patio to sit on for nice days, and a fireplace inside for winter. Along with the typical cafe beverages, High Ground sells beer, wine, sandwiches, and paninis.

Inside the Old Capital Town Center is T.Spoons, many students’ go-to place to kill time between classes and grab doughnuts and coffee. T.Spoons has ample seating and is located near the mall’s Washington Street entrance and bus stop.

Other Iowa City coffee sellers include a Starbucks franchise, 228 S. Clinton St.; Bruegger’s, 245 Iowa Ave., which specializes in bagels and Caribou coffee; the small but historic Wild Bill’s in North Hall; Uptown Bill’s, 730 S. Dubuque St., which hosts a open-mike night on Thursdays and shows on Saturdays, as well as a regular Irish music session and ukelele club; and more.

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