Food

A Cup of Joe and a Smile

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by Frank Reddy

It”s like “Cheers” without the booze. That”s how many local coffee shops see themselves when it comes to customer service and the ambiance they aim to exude. If it”s a steaming cup of Joe you”re after and a friendly place to sip it, look no further. Because sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name…or at least they can write it legibly on your cup.

Blue Rooster Cafe
Kyle Cave relocated the beloved Blue Rooster from Lilburn in 2013, opening up in downtown Lawrenceville. She says any coffee shop that values its customers and “keeps its products looking and tasting wonderful” will always be a successful one. When you stop in for a cup of Joe, try one of the café”s pastries as well.

What”s good: Iced coffee, fresh brewed by local roasters

Blue Rooster Cafe
169 W. Pike St. Lawrenceville

45 South
Michelle Nguyen, general manager of 45 South, feels the establishment is a “big part of the community hub. We want everybody who walks in the door to feel 100-percent welcome, like we”ve known each other for 100 years.” The business recently celebrated its seventh anniversary.

What”s good: Monkey Mocha, a latte with chocolate and banana.

45 South
45 S. Peachtree St., Norcross

Boulder Creek
Manager Richie Brannon trains his baristas in the school of “spoil the customers.” In the three years since Boulder Creek has been open, management has aimed to slow down the brewing process a bit, restoring the art and passion of pouring an artisan, caffeinated concoction for patrons to enjoy.

What”s good: The Shaker, A frozen latte made with a martini shaker.

Boulder Creek
2815 Buford Drive, Suite 108B, Buford

Parkside Bakery & Café
Owner Kerry Cave describes his establishment as a unique place: “It”s not a Starbucks and it”s not a cupcake shop.” Boasting its own private roaster, Parkside rotates coffee blends by the season and gets beans from all over the world. “Being a coffee shop, you have to treat the customers right. And that”s what we do. They walk in, and they can feel like this is their place.”

What”s good: The house seasonal blend

Parkside Bakery & Café
2023 Grayson Highway, No. 105, Grayson

Peachtree Café
At Peachtree Café, “you”re not just a tip on the table,” says Paula Erazo. She”s the daughter of owner Victor Erazo, and she brings much pride to the family business. “We are a community here. We love and take care of our customers. It”s a really friendly place. Some of our customers even have their birthday parties here.”

What”s good: Chai latte

Peachtree Café
50 S. Clayton St., Lawrenceville