Coffee drinking in Bratislava draws on the Viennese tradition of the sit and sip coffee house where a cup and good book is all you need. Since the fall of Communism, numerous cafés have sprouted up throughout the city, with the city centre being the main locale.
Most cafes now serve espressos from professional espresso machines and if you have a favorite brand of coffee many cafes advertise the brand they serve on their cups, napkins, and storefronts. Popular brands include Alfredo, Bristot, Julius Meinl, Lavazza and a number of other Western European suppliers.
Cafe Mayer – Reviving a tradition from the early 20th century, Mayer is an impeccably polished café, offering some of the proudest-looking home-made cakes in Bratislava. Mayer is always busy and service is not always as attentive as one would expect. However, tourists who look to promise a decent tip are attended to professionally.
Café Maximilian – Refurbished as a cafe/chocolaterie, Maximillian offers countless delicacies in a smoke-free environment. This cafe is great for people-watching in the Main Square.
Antik – A richly decorated posh café in a mirrored, antique style room offers spotless service and great coffee just off the Main Square on Sedlarska. The café also serves mixed drinks and draught beer. Anitk is popular with tourists, local businessmen, and locals, and all are vying for the street side seating. On colder days the outside seating is surrounded by glass, and gas heaters keep you and your coffee warm.
Next Apache – A cool and friendly expatriate-owned small café in a court-yard on Panenska 28, near the Presidential Palace. Next Apache offers quality coffee, a variety of soft drinks, and draught beer. One nice feautre for english speakers is the hundreds of English-language books available to either browse or buy. In the summer, a charming and comfortable terrace opens up within the building’s courtyard.
Verne – Located in the building of the Bratislava Academy of Fine Arts on Hviezdoslavovo Square is a charming café with antique furniture and unique decorations based on some the fantastical themes that exist within the books of the French writer Jules Verne. Verne serves excellent coffee but is also popular for draught beer and drinks in the evening. Throughout the day the kitchen serves up a variety of mainly local dishes (albeit with varied quality). The staff are dynamic, unpretentious, and friendly. Regular patrons include a lively crowd of students, artists, and other professionals. In the summer, outside seating along the square is hugely popular.