10 Charming Cafés in York: Where to Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch in the City Centre

Are you exploring the enchanting city of York soon? With its rich history and many attractions, you’ll likely need somewhere to rest and refuel during your busy day of sightseeing. While the city boasts excellent pubs and restaurants, sometimes a quaint café with homemade delights is just what you need. York’s city centre has numerous cafes, ranging from well-established favourites to hidden gems down charming cobbled streets. To guide your search for the ideal spot for breakfast, afternoon tea, or a leisurely lunch, I’ve compiled a list of some of the best independent cafes in York.

Cafés in York You Need to Visit…

Plush Café & Cocktail Bar

Cafes in York - Plush Cafe

6 Stonegate, York YO1 8AS

Plush Café could quite easily be considered the most Instagrammable café in York. Boasting not one but four themed dining areas including a boho space with giant floor cushions and a garden room complete with a wooden swing, it offers entirely different vibes to other cafés in York.

Of course, the food is pretty good too, and often as aesthetically pleasing as the decor! Think rainbow bagels, loaded freakshakes, colourful cocktails and mocktails, and oh-so-pretty afternoon teas.


Cafes in York - Mannetti's

 5 Lendal, York YO1 8AQ

Mannetti’s is a family-run café and delicatessen in the centre of York with a superb reputation. Mannetti’s regularly receives glowing reviews on TripAdvisor for its hearty breakfasts, generously filled artisan sandwiches and homemade cakes.

Most of the produce used at Mannetti’s is sourced from small businesses around the UK and the shelves of the charming delicatessen are jam-packed with all manner of foodie delights. Pop in for a delicious breakfast, brunch or lunch and then purchase a few goodies to take home with you!

Parlormade Café and Scone House

Cafes in York - Parlormade

1 Little Shambles, York YO1 7LY

Scones are thought to have originated from Scotland but they’ve long been an essential component of a traditional English afternoon tea. Freshly baked and slathered with jam and cream, few things satisfy those sweet cravings like a homemade scone; served with a steaming mug of Yorkshire Tea.

You’ll find some of the best scones in the city at Parlormade Café and Scone House. Housed in a stunning 15th-century building, this independent business bakes countless scones each day in a variety of sweet and savoury flavours. For £8, you can build your ideal Cream Tea. Choose your scone, preserve and hot drink then sit back and relax as you watch the comings and goings of the medieval street on which it is situated. With flavours such as Raspberry & Coconut, Blueberry & Lemon and Cheese & Chive on offer, you may need to order more than one!

Mannion & Co

Cafes in York - Mannion & Co

 1 Blake Street, York YO1 8QJ

Mannion & Co on Blake Street is a firm favourite with foodies. Far from being your average cafe, it offers daytime bistro-style dining with menus featuring mouthwatering mains, sensational sandwiches, indulgent sweet treats and charcuterie boards loaded with produce straight from its deli counter.

The Mannion & Co name is synonymous with quality ingredients and all the bread, cakes and pastries are baked fresh on the premises daily. A cracking little spot for coffee and a catch-up or a leisurely lunch. If you can’t make it to the York site, Mannion & Co also has venues in Helmsley and Easingwood.

Brew & Brownie

Cafes in York - Brew and Brownie

5 Museum Street, York YO1 7DT

Brew & Brownie was established in 2013 and offers more than its name suggests. There are, in fact, two Brew & Brownie sites on Museum Street – one being a bakeshop and the other, of course, a café.

The menu at the Brew & Brownie café changes with the seasons as it’s always inspired by fresh, seasonal produce sourced from local suppliers such as the incredible Haxby Bakehouse. However, one is guaranteed to be spoiled for choice with a plethora of delicious brunches. Start your day with a classic Eggs Benedict, break your fast with avo on toast or treat yourself to a hot sandwich stuffed with sausages or bacon from M&K Butchers. Craving something sweet? The American pancake stacks at Brew & Brownie are delicious!

The Old York Tea Room

Cafes in York - The Old York Tea Room

72 Goodramgate, York YO1 7LF

I admire your willpower if you can walk past this place and stop yourself from going in! The cake displays in the window of The Old York Tea Room are utterly mesmerising with stacks and stacks of freshly baked blondies, brownies, rocky roads and more.

Housed in a 700-year-old building on Goodramgate, The Old York Tea Room offers a cosy and traditional setting for a cake and a cuppa or a tasty homemade lunch. There are a rather impressive 15 types of tea to choose from at The Old York Tea Room and each is served via a traditional tea set. This is certainly a popular spot and the queues to get in are often lengthy. Worth the wait for those enormous slabs of Gold Bar Rocky Road!

Dyls Café Bar

Cafes in York - Dyls

Skeldergate Bridge, York YO1 9WJ

When it comes to location, Dyl’s is certainly unique! You’ll find the contemporary café car in the Motor House on Skelergate Bridge. It boasts splendid views across the River Ouse and of Clifford’s Tower so a wonderful spot at which to soak up the sun with a treat or two in hand during the warmer months. Dyl’s also has a heated terrace so the scenic location can be enjoyed when it gets a tad nippy too.

It’s a simple menu of breakfast and brunch favourites at Dyl’s and the prices are fairly reasonable for a city centre eatery. If visiting on a weekend, you can save 50% on alcoholic house drinks when you order one of their brunch dishes. Options include Chorizo Beans on Toast, Croque Madame and homemade cinnamon brioche French Toast with toppings.

Cocoa Joe’s

11 Museum Street, York YO1 7DT

Cocoa Joe’s is an independent business specialising in both hot and cold single-origin chocolate drinks. The indie biz started life as a small market stall in London but now has shops in both York and Pateley Bridge. The hot chocolates here are sensational and for an additional £1.60, you can add a shot of your favourite tipple too. The perfect winter warmer! If it’s just a hot drink and a chocolate fix you’re after, then be sure to pop in. There are lots of different chocolates available and the knowledgeable staff will always let you sample some to help you decide what to order.


Cafes in York - Wheldrakes

 5C Goodramgate, York YO1 7LJ

Homely and welcoming, Wheldrakes on Goodramgate is a licensed independent café that’s as comforting as a warm hug! With traditional interiors, simple menus of home-cooked food and a daily selection of mouthwatering baked treats, this characterful café offers everything you need for a mid-morning or pit stop during your tour of York.

Treat yourself to a hearty Full English comprising locally sourced produce or deliberate over the jam-packed cake display before settling down with a tasty treat and a mug of their excellent own blend coffee.


Cafes in York - Rise

44 Fossgate, York YO1 9TF

Looking for a café in York offering excellent brunch options? Rise on Fossage is one of York’s most popular daytime dining destinations in York. Food is served daily until 4 pm and although the menu isn’t the most extensive, it features a tantalising array of traditional breakfasts, internationally inspired brunches and generously filled sandwiches.

For those seeking something light and nutritious, Rise offers smoothie bowls packed with fresh fruit and granola. If you’re looking for something hot, there are delicious savoury brunch options like Turkish Eggs and their tasty version of a full breakfast. To satisfy those sweet cravings, I highly recommend the Roasted Peach French toast or one of their exceptionally good pastries!

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