If you want to get away from national and international coffee chains like Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts and try some truly independent coffee roasters instead, you've come to the right place. Though coffee has now become a cheaply mass-produced and consumed beverage, many coffee aficionados prefer to grab a cup of joe that has been sourced from well-cultivated and sustainable farms worldwide, prepared by the most experienced roasters, and served by knowledgeable baristas.
This list features the best coffee roaster in each state, so no matter where you live, you can find beans that will give a whole new flavor to your morning energy boost. Drop by the roasters' associated cafes, or if it doesn't have one (or you'd rather stay at home), get your favorite varietals delivered to your door.
Coffee drinkers who are environmentally conscious can also use this list to discover which roasters have been certified as sustainable, Fair Trade, or organic. Learn more about the roasters that actually follow ethical practices and help the local communities as well as producers, so you can make a coffee purchasing decision based on your own guiding principles in addition to flavor.
Read more: 31 Coffee Brands, Ranked From Worst To Best
Alabama: Seeds Coffee Co.
Seeds Coffee Co. is a company obsessed with mindful sourcing, as it calls it. It roasts multiple days per week to guarantee freshness and also does weekly cupping to remain dialed in to the specific notes and qualities of each and every roast and brew. If you subscribe to Seed Coffee Co.'s whole bean program, 25% of the profits go to the farmers and communities Seeds Coffee Co. works with abroad.
Alaska: Black Cup
Getting aromatic, select coffee beans from their tropical places of origin up to Anchorage, Alaska, is no easy feat, but Black Cup does just that. Perry Merkel started Cafe del Mundo here in 1975, using just a small air roaster and his knowledge of Central American coffee beans. After Merkel retired, the idea to rebrand as Black Cup was born. Black Cup provides an incredible level of detail on how and where its blends and single origin coffees are sourced and processed, as well as what flavor notes you can expect.
Arizona: Xanadu Coffee Company
Xanadu Coffee Company only has a few coffee varieties available for sale, as the roasters here like to focus on quality rather than quantity. The company shares everything it can about the processing and growing of its blend coffees and single origin beans, from simple facts like the roast and processing style to the names of the farmers and families that grow the beans. In fact, you can even trace down the grade of each microlot used to in Xanadu's coffee blends.
Arkansas: Onyx Coffee Lab
Known best for the unique single origin coffee varieties it sources from Africa and Latin America, Onyx Coffee Lab prides itself on finding the best coffees in the world and having experienced coffee roasters fine-tune them to create a heavenly cup. If you're looking for something a little different, you can also try the lab's extractions, a line of coffee concentrates in liquid form that you can keep on your shelf for a very time.
California: Equator Coffees
Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell have been running Equator Coffees since 1995 when the operation started it in a garage in Marin County. Now, with 10 locations throughout California, Equator Coffees has become one of the leading names in the state when it comes to sourcing and roasting coffee with a focus on both flavor and social responsibility. Though many roasters claim to be conscientious and green, Equator sincerely follows through. It was the first coffee roaster in California to get a B Corp certification, a sustainable coffee label that is independently verified to ascertain that this roaster adheres to environmentally-friendly principles.
Colorado: Huckleberry Roasters
Roast Magazine awarded Colorado's Huckleberry Roasters the 2022 Macro Roaster of the Year award, so you can find some pretty great coffee here. In addition to the variety of washed, natural, and honey-processed beans you will find, you can see exactly where your coffee is coming from, down to the specific region, farm, or co-op that's supplying the beans. At Huck, coffee often hails from more rare areas of production, like India. Best of all, Huckleberry embodies its philosophy of investing in communities at home as well, cultivating a great work environment and respect for its baristas and customers.
Connecticut: Zero Prophet Coffee LLC
Located in the town of Washington, Zero Prophet Coffee specializes in creating small-batch, organic coffees that are then sold in several locations throughout the state (and in a few neighboring ones) or delivered straight to customers. Zero Prophet prefers to do a Vienna roast, which is the dark end of a medium roast. In addition, the company regularly tests each new arrival to align bean traits with specific brewing methods.
Delaware: Brandywine Coffee Roasters
Brandywine Coffee Roasters is a funky, artsy roaster whose slogan, "Be Kind, Create, Drink Coffee," is truly reflected in all aspects of its business. The owners put a personal touch on each and every variety, as local artist Todd Purse hand-makes the prints for each bag sold. Master Roaster Vic Scutari roasts beans in the oxygen-free Loring Falcon roaster, and by focusing on small batches, he scientifically tailors the roasting process to bring out the best flavor of each coffee, whether from Burundi, Costa Rica, Colombia, or Kenya.
Florida: Lineage Coffee Roasting
Though Lineage Coffee Roasting is based in Orlando, with three locations around the city, you can order its coffee straight to your door no matter where you are in Florida. Sign up for the single origin weekly subscription so you can try a huge variety of hand-selected single origins from around the world throughout the year. Coffee drinkers who want to learn more about the art of roasting and brewing coffee can also attend one of the many classes Lineage hosts covering brewing, cupping, and even how to make latte art.
Georgia: Bellwood Coffee
Two brothers and former baristas teamed up with a designer and experienced roaster in order to bring Bellwood Coffee to life. The idea was to create a creative roastery and café that would experiment with methods of sourcing and roasting in order to always be ahead of the curve. Walk into one of three locations around Atlanta, and you'll have access to interesting single origin coffee choices where everything down to the drying and fermentation is considered. At the time of writing, a current Peruvian coffee from Cusco, Yanatile Valley, arrives as an example with sweet and acidic apple notes.
Hawaii: Big Island Coffee Roasters
It's hard to pick just one great roaster from the only U.S. state that actually produces coffee, but there's no competition when it comes to Big Island Coffee Roasters in Hawaii. Big Island specializes in local Hawaiian coffee beans, including 100% Kona coffee, one of the most sought-after, delicious, and expensive coffees in the world. Though the company was started by two mainlanders from Portland, the pair take special care to protect native Hawaiian land and have helped local family farms gain $6 million over the years.
Idaho: Neckar Coffee
Neckar Coffee is widely recognized as the best roaster in Idaho. The company focuses on a handful of small-batch coffees sourced from just a few select farms it works with throughout the world. Drop by the café in downtown Boise to get a taste of these beautifully roasted beans, or order them as part of a subscription or a one-time delivery directly to your front door. In fact, Neckar delivers to the entire country, so you can sample this great U.S. roaster no matter where you live.
Illinois: Dark Matter Coffee
Have you ever heard of barrel-aged coffee? If not, get down to Dark Matter Coffee in Chicago as soon as you can. One of the many incredibly creative and innovative things it tries is aging coffee beans in barrels that previously contained different kinds of liquor. The move infuses the beans with unique flavors before roasting. Dark Matter coffees are for those who like getting into the nitty gritty of processing and fermentation, key aspects that play a role in a coffee's overall character.
Indiana: Tinker Coffee Co.
Tinker Coffee Co. doesn't just source carefully; it knows the life stories of the farmers it partners with and the complete inner workings of each farm, as you can see from its coffee descriptions. You can choose from the usual single origin varietals and blends, or take a walk on the wild side and go for one of the company's "adventurous" blends. These include bags named after producers, like the 4th generation coffee farmer Jorge Rogas, whose Colombian-grown beans taste like wild cherry and melon.
Iowa: Ross Street Roasting
Whether you prefer your caffeine in coffee or tea version, Ross Street Roasting has you covered. The gourmet blends and single origin varietals that Ross Street sells are mostly termed "relationship coffees," because they are sourced from producers that the company has partnered with for a long time, so its growing and washing process is very well-known and understood. If you stop by the Indianapolis-based store and want tea instead, try one of the many loose-leaf teas partnered with and sourced from the local company, The Tea Cellar.
Kansas: Reverie Coffee Roasters
This Wichita roaster and café has the local nickname "Foreverie" ... because creating the perfect cup of coffee for each customer does take a while. However, Reverie Coffee Roasters owns that nickname and takes pride in the fact that not only does it roast and brew the best coffee in the state, but the experienced baristas will also take the time to answer any and all questions customers have, explaining exactly what has gone into the final cup of coffee. The only thing that tops fine beans is high-end service.
Kentucky: Sunergos Coffee
If the name of Sunergos Coffee sounds complicated, it's because it's taken from ancient Greek; sunergos means collaborative service. This Louisville café and roaster (now with four locations in the city) picked its name because of its deep belief in building close relationships with both its coffee producers and its community. Though this coffee shop has a fair amount of rotating, seasonal offerings, it features a handful of foundational coffee cultivars with subtle, familiar flavors that you can find in its stores pretty much year-round.
Louisiana: Cherry Coffee Roasters
In a city with a coffee culture like New Orleans', finding the best coffee roaster can be a hard task. However, Cherry Coffee Roasters, which started as a simple pop-up, has risen up through the ranks. Cherry Coffee generally sells only a handful of coffee types, usually 10 or fewer, but these beans are carefully sourced from several countries throughout the world and roasted in small batches to enable attention to detail. The specialty techniques used on small lot beans create a nuanced yet approachable experience for coffee drinkers of any stripe.
Maine: Tandem Coffee Roasters
Devoted coffee drinkers usually have trouble deciding what style of beans to try, and for those people, Tandem Coffee Roasters offers a few different sampler packs to introduce its customers to a selection of the best beans it sells, whether single origin or year-round offerings. The roasters at Tandem work with unique coffees that have gone through innovative processing techniques to reach the shop, such as anaerobic fermentation.
Maryland: Ceremony Coffee Roasters
Order one of Ceremony Coffee Roasters' newest arrivals, which are always highlighted to let customers know which varietals are freshly roasted. The beans on sale here feature a huge range of flavor notes, ranging from classic options like nuts and orange to unique flavors like brownie batter. In addition to serving delicious coffee, Ceremony really walks the talk in regards to supporting communities and ethical practices, as the business donates profits to causes like the local Baltimore Restaurant Relief Fund and the Climate Project for coffee growers in Guatemala.
Massachusetts: Gracenote Coffee Boston
Though Gracenote Coffee is sold in-store at Gracenote Boston, it's also available throughout Massachusetts, including Cambridge, Concord, Somerville, and plenty of other towns. One of the things that makes this New England roaster unique is its focus on creating a heavier roast, which usually impacts some of the more nuanced coffee bean flavors, but not when it's done with the level of care and experience present at Gracenote.
Michigan: Madcap Coffee
In addition to carefully and responsibly sourcing beans, the team at Madcap Coffee also takes the extra step of testing and choosing favorite batches before the beans hit the roastery. Founded by Trevor Corlett in Grand Rapids, Madcap now has several cafes throughout the state, though the roastery still remains headquartered in Grand Rapids. In addition to being a past Chair of the Barista Guild of America, Trevor finished in the top three in a U.S. barista competition for two years in a row; rest assured, his taste in coffee is impeccable.
Minnesota: Up Coffee Roasters
Up Coffee Roasters supplies top-tier coffee and industrial equipment while also selling impeccably roasted coffee to individuals in its Minneapolis café. This establishment specializes in small-batch roasts that are certified organic, so coffee drinkers who prefer to leave GMOs and other additives out of their morning energy boost should feel confident ordering from Up. Though you can order beans in a classic whole bean form, you also have the option to order specific grinds depending on your homebrew system.
Mississippi: BeanFruit Coffee Co.
In addition to supplying local Jackson residents with fresh beans, BeanFruit Coffee Co. also loves to educate its customers about the different nuances of coffee from around the world. This roaster keeps an eye on coffees that are single origin in essence and farmed via micro-lot collectives. That way, it can develop strong relationships with its producers and make sure sustainable practices are being followed in the cultivation of the beans. BeanFruit Coffee Co. is part of the Rainforest Alliance and also the only roaster in Mississippi to be Fair Trade Certified.
Missouri: Sump Coffee
Sump Coffee is for dedicated coffee drinkers, those who like to taste the more complex, nuanced notes of each type of bean. Though Sump sells quite a few varietals, this roaster likes to focus on light roast coffees in order to preserve the sweet, fruity, and occasional floral notes of the bean. You can drop by the café in St. Louis or order one of the available subscriptions directly to your home. If you're having trouble deciding, try the Roaster's Choice Subscription.
Montana: Montana Coffee Traders
Since 1981, R.C. and Beth Beall of Montana Coffee Traders have brought a real appreciation of gourmet coffee and top-quality beans to the Big Sky country. The Bealls started their operation out of a charming farmhouse near Whitefish, Montana, and have now expanded offerings to a few cafés throughout the state. Montana Coffee Traders focuses on arabica coffees and has selections from all over the world, from Sumatra and Ethiopia to Peru.
Nebraska: Archetype Coffee
Head barista Isaiah Sheese placed fourth in the 2023 World Barista Championship competition in Athens, meaning when you visit Archetype Coffee, you're being served by the best of the best. In fact, if you drop by soon, you can sign up for three courses of espresso-based drinks, known as the World Barista Competition Service Experience. These are the same varieties Isaiah presented during the championship. Otherwise, drop by any of the three Omaha locations and try any of the top choices available.
Nevada: Mothership Coffee Roasters
Juanny Romero started Mothership Coffee Roasters in 2012, back when specialty coffees were a much less popular niche in the area than they are today. That meant that, together with her first employees, Romero had to perfect the roasting process mostly by trial and error while learning from other professionals. Today, after expanding to four locations between Henderson and Las Vegas, Mothership has developed what it terms a "sweet-spot" roasting method to balance body and flavor. Mothership deals almost exclusively in single origin coffees.
New Hampshire: Mad River Coffee Roasters
Mad River Coffee Roasters was once named with the distinction of serving the "Best Cup of Coffee North of Concord." The Levins, a local couple, started Mad River when they got tired of never finding coffee they really liked. This family-owned business has now expanded into a café and bakery, with Melissa Levin taking care of the baked goods and lunch menu while Dave Levin creates energizing drinks as a master roaster. Mad River roasts are always complex but highly approachable.
New Jersey: Black River Roasters
Off US-22 in Whitehouse Station, you will find a picturesque bright blue café named Black River Roasters. This café specializes in Fair Trade, organic, specialty coffees that it roasts to perfection on its top-of-the-line Loring Smart Roaster. Black River roasts small batches in order to give each coffee varietal the treatment it needs to bring outs its best flavors. Try the organic espresso blend, which has notes of rich chocolate, hazelnut, juicy pear, and brown sugar.
New Mexico: Cutbow Coffee
Paul Gallegos, one of the pre-eminent artisan coffee roasters in the country, perhaps even the world, heads up the quirky New Mexico café and roastery known as Cutbow Coffee. Before setting up shop in Albuquerque, Gallegos spent years roasting 70 million pounds plus of beans for Peet's Coffee. If you're interested in the process of making coffee, from bean to cup, you can attend one of the weekly cuppings that take place every Friday at noon.
New York: Parlor Coffee Roasters
The building where Parlor Coffee Roasters is housed is as unique as the cultivars it meticulously selects to serve customers. The café is inside an old repurposed carriage house located next to the Brooklyn Navy Yard in one of the trendiest neighborhoods of the borough. The team behind Parlor has personally visited eight countries across Latin America and Africa to taste, test, and source the best possible beans for customers; you can trust the judgment.
North Carolina: Counter Culture Coffee
For coffee drinkers who have started to worry about the future of their favorite plant thanks to climate change, Counter Culture is right there with you and actively doing something to help. One of the many charitable and sustainable initiatives Counter Culture contributes to is World Coffee Research. This organization is dedicated to improving the livelihoods of coffee producers around the world, as well as the climate resistance of the plants they grow, so the single origin specialty beans Counter Culture serves can remain available for a long, long time.
North Dakota: Twenty Below Coffee Co. Fargo
A warm cup of coffee is always welcome in the frigid winters of North Dakota, and Twenty Below Coffee Co. is there to serve. In addition to making coffee for individuals who drop by the stores in Fargo and Moorehead, Twenty Below also supplies businesses with delicious specialty coffees and caters to full-scale events with its widely-sourced cultivars. At the time of publication, the Cafe con Amor from Costa Rica and the Indonesian Single Origin from Papua New Guinea Sigri Estate AA Peaberry are always incredible choices.
Ohio: Crimson Cup
Crimson Cup has been open since 1991, when it was one of the first shops on the scene to truly experiment with specialty coffees and introduce them to the wider public. This team truly knows everything about the coffee business, as they have helped multiple people open cafes with a seven step program. The many awards Crimson has earned, including Roaster of the Year (from Roast Magazine) and the Good Food Award for its Ethiopian Kossa Kebena, are proof of experience and quality.
Oklahoma: Elemental Coffee
Elemental Coffee serves quality brew at an Oklahoma City location, open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the weekends. In addition to the approximately ten carefully selected varietals it keeps in stock, some of which change from time to time, it also sells a whole lot of brewing equipment for both retail and individual use. If you've been meaning to set up a great home brew process, this is your chance to buy a quality Chemex pour over system plus coffee filters.
Oregon: Coava Coffee
Portland is known for its independent and alternative culinary scene, including its food trucks, breweries, and of course, the endless small batch roasters and quirky cafes on its streets. Though it's hard to pick a standout from the truly superior coffee scene in town, Coava Coffee always ranks highly in locals' estimations. As seems to be the case with many roasters, Coava was started in its owner's garage. Former barista and roaster Matt Higgins wanted to focus on regions that were generally under-sourced, and he has maintained those producer relationships to this day.
Pennylvania: Passenger Roastery & Coffee Bar
When you buy coffee from Passenger Roastery, you have to try at least one of its Foundational Coffees, which the café serves year round. Passenger manage to keep these beans going by freezing them the second they arrive in unroasted, "green" state. This stops the beans from aging and keeps them fresh until they are ready to be roasted. Offering these high-quality beans year round helps strengthen Passenger's relationship with its five main producing partners and results in loyal return customers as well.
Rhode Island: Borealis Coffee Co.
With quite a few locations throughout Rhode Island, Borealis Coffee Company likes creating comfortable, communal spaces in its cafes almost as much as it likes serving excellent coffees. Survive the chilly winters of the Northeast by posting up in one of its cafes with a book, a laptop for work, or a few friends, and trying any of the hand-picked varietals it keeps in stock. Borealis likes to focus on light to medium roasts, as it doesn't want the roast to overwhelm the flavor and subtle nuances of each bean.
South Carolina: Coastal Coffee Roasters
The family-owned Coastal Coffee Roasters in Summerville goes beyond small-batch roasting, defining its in-house process as "micro roasting". Before even starting the process, experienced roasters separate the green beans by hand to make sure they are similar in size and characteristics, resulting in tiny batches that can each be roasted in the particular way that works best for each type. If you ask for coffee bean delivery to your house, the beans will be roasted to order, ensuring it arrives as fresh, fragrant, and flavorful as possible.
South Dakota: Coffea Roasterie & Espresso Bar
In Sioux Falls, South Dakota, a highly knowledgeable team of approximately forty baristas, bakers, and roasters have collaborated to set up and operate the three excellent cafes and separate roasting lab of Coffea Roasterie & Espresso Bar. For coffee aficionados intent on cutting down on waste, Coffea also offers a program where you can drop off any coffee bags purchased from them at a box in the café and let it be recycled.
Tennessee: Crema Coffee Roasters
Since its founding in 2008, Crema Coffee Roasters has strived to do its best by the local community. In addition to creating four beautiful, popular, and welcoming café locations throughout Nashville, this roaster has also fully achieved zero-waste status, following through on its ethical code of sustainability. Crema loves to educate its customers on how they can brew an incredible cup of coffee by offering classes at a downtown café's Training Lab, limited to 3-6 students, and offering detailed, step-by-step brewing guides on its website.
Texas: Texas Coffee Traders
The customers at Texas Coffee Traders are comprised of both serious espresso drinkers and remote workers who want to enjoy an energy boost on a charming patio in the Austin sun. Surprisingly, this café is owned by the same couple — the Bealls — that started Montana Coffee Traders. Originally from Texas, the Bealls decided to continue their roasting success in their home state once they returned. One of the best varieties to try here is the 4th Street Blend, with plum, red apple, and caramel notes in its flavor profile.
Utah: Publik Coffee Roasters
A collection of 65 solar panels provides all of the power for this Salt Lake City roaster and offsets the energy consumption of the roasting process. The roaster, a Diedrich IR-12, even has an afterburner attached that reduces the smoke and pollutants it produces. That's because Publik Coffee Roasters owner Missy Greis doesn't just talk about sustainability; she's truly committed to it. When you grab a cup from Publik, you're not just picking up quality coffee, you're also supporting a truly green operation.
Vermont: Vivid Coffee
Some of the varietals at Vivid Coffee can't be found anywhere else. That's because Vivid makes a commitment to some of its producing partners to buy whole crop, which means the team here roasts some really unique beans that no one else has. This exclusivity, combined with the roasters' and baristas' attention to detail, may be why Vivid was nominated for a Seven Daysies Award 2022 as Best Coffee Roaster. Drop by the flagship café in Burlington as soon as you can.
Virginia: Cervantes Coffee Roasters
If you're in Virginia (or nearby) and want a deeply flavorful single origin varietal deli vered to your home quickly, order one of the ethically sourced coffee beans available at Cervantes Coffee Roasters. This particular roaster promises to ship out coffee just one business day after an order is received. In order to best serve its customers, Cervantes will also ship the coffee either whole bean or ground for your preferred method of coffee brewing; all you have to do is state your preferences in the notes on your order.
Washington: Lighthouse Roasters
Seattle is the original home of Starbucks in part because the city's café scene has been thriving for decades now, and remains so incredibly vibrant. Lighthouse Roasters completely embodies the coffee culture of the Pacific Northwest, fusing comfort, tradition, and innovation in a welcoming atmosphere that will warm you up on a rainy Seattle day. This establishment has been roasting small batches of carefully selected beans in a vintage cast iron roaster since it was founded in 1993. Locals will be happy to know that Lighthouse is extremely dog-friendly, so bring Fido along.
West Virginia: The Black Dog Coffee Company
Head to Shenandoah Junction to discover West Virginia's top roaster, the Black Dog Coffee Company.You can observe the roasting process yourself here, quite the treat as beans are roasted in the incredibly rare and historic Plutonius machine, built in 1931. It bears the distinction of being one of the oldest roasters in the U.S. that is still operating to this day. Enjoy top tier coffee while also supporting local businesses, as in addition to its own offerings, this roastery and café sells foods, crafts, and other products from over sixty small local businesses.
Wisconsin: Ruby Coffee Roasters
Ruby Coffee Roasters sells all kinds of coffee to its customers, including decaf beans, organic options, blends, seasonal offerings, and much, much more. You may have a hard time deciding which varietal to get, as pretty much all of them sound incredibly intriguing, so try a sampler pack that features a mix of four to help you narrow down your search. Stop by the restaurant and café Ruby operates in Stevens Point to get a full meal at any time of the day accompanied by a smooth and flavorful cup of coffee.
Wyoming: Snowy Elk Coffee Co.
Cheyenne is home to Snowy Elk Coffee Co., the best roaster in Wyoming and winner of the 2023 Golden Bean Bronze Medal. Every roast sold here is packed full of flavor, but two that stand out include Morning Bugle and Howlin' Wolf Espresso Blend. As the names might suggest, the varietals here are inspired by the outdoors, where Snowy Elk also recommends you consume them. In a state like Wyoming, where fishing, hiking, and camping are par for the course, there's no better company than a freshly roasted, warm, invigorating cup of coffee.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.