Neighborhood Vibes (+ Great Coffee) at Idle Hour Coffee Roasters, Raleigh

A welcome addition to the Raleigh coffee scene in August of 2020 was the boutique Idle Hour Coffee Roasters in the Oberlin neighborhood, just 3 miles from downtown Raleigh, and if you’re on your phone searching for cute coffee shops near me, you can’t go wrong here!

People sitting on table and chairs out the front of a coffee shop - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Lovely Raleigh coffee shop

I love the neighborhood feel of this Raleigh coffee shop. It’s the type of cafe I dream of having as my local where I just walk or bike to in the mornings for a cup of coffee, to catch up with friends, or to get some work done online out of the house! 

Located on Oberlin Road and walking distance from the excellent Five Points neighborhoods and The Village District, this is an adorable coffee shop from the outside with an inviting interior space that’s aesthetically pleasing – clean and fresh in appearance, a lovely ambiance, and welcoming and helpful staff. 

Cup of coffee ina white mug - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Great lattes at Idle Hour
People sitting on a couch and stools in a cafe - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Lovely sitting area

Idle Hour Coffee (not just a coffee house)

Yes, Idle Hour is a coffee house first and foremost, and a great one at that, but they also serve tea, baked goods that rotate frequently, plus paninis, sandwiches and other small bites. Even if your intention is just a cup of coffee, good luck getting out of here without eating one of their delicious pastries or desserts, especially if you have kids like us! 

Dessserts on display in a cafe - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Donuts in a coffee shop - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Cup of coffee in a white mug - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh

Upon entry you are greeted by their pastry and desserts display and let me just say, it’s all great eye candy and our taste buds are equally pleased, and one of our favorite coffee/cake pairings in Raleigh can be found here – their flour-less chocolate cake goes perfect with a hot latte of choice!

Chocolate cake and cup of coffee
Flour-less chocolate cake

For drinks, on offer is a full coffee bar menu of staples such as espresso, latte, Americano, cappuccino, mocha, macchiato, chai latte, and pour over plus cold brew, and nitro. And drinks are available with whole, skim or Oatley milk.

Cup of coffee on a glass coffee table - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Cup of coffee in a white mug on yellow table - - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Cup of coffee in a white paper cup - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh

I’m primarily a latte drinker and their lattes are top-notch and worth traveling for, and up there with some of my other favorite coffee shops in Raleigh, and whilst I almost always drink hot coffee, when I need a refreshing iced coffee I am a fan of their popular Iced Vietnamese coffee, which is also available with coconut milk. (Iced coffees are a perfect pairing with summer in Raleigh.

Iced coffee in a glass cup - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Iced Vietnamese Coffee

If you visit Raleigh in the fall, don’t miss their specialty fall lattes, the maple ginger and lavender honey latte are a definite treat. 

All their pastries are made from scratch or by local vendors, and their popular Tepuy Donuts (handcrafted sourdough doughnuts) are a hit with the locals, and with our daughters! 

Donut on a white plate - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Donuts in a coffee shop - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Donut on top of a coffee cup - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Tepuy Donuts

There’s also a small menu with paninis and sandwiches and bagels if you’d like something more substantial, and their Banh Mi sandwich – a short baguette with thin, crisp crust and soft, airy texture – takes me back to my time traveling through Vietnam in 2003. 

Baugette sandwich and cup of coffee
Banh Mi

I love their focus on supporting local suppliers in the Raleigh area, and at Idle Hour Coffee they proudly serve:

  • Little Blue Macaron
  • Tepuy Donuts
  • Union Special Bakery
  • Tin Roof Teas
  • Lyrix Kombucha
  • Arteo Matcha
  • Methodical Roasters
  • HB’s homemade pastries and cheesecakes

Inside seating consists of a few comfy couches and chairs, plus cozy booths. The atmosphere is pleasant and well suited to conversations with friends or to do some work online – get there early if you plan on doing some work – and on nice weather days I enjoy sitting outside at one of the tables and chairs on the sidewalk. 

People sitting in a cafe at table and chairs - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
People sitting on a stoll looking out window - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
People sitting in a coffee shop - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Laptop computer and cup of coffee in a cafe - - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Two stolls, a window and people sitting outside - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh

For parking, they have a few spots behind the building – when looking at Idle Hour from outside you’ll see a driveway on the right of the building. Otherwise we have parked on Oberlin Rd or on nearby Davis St with no issues.

Person orderinf a cup of coffee at a counter - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh
Cup of coffee and yellow tables and chairs - Idle Hour Coffee Shop, Raleigh

This is a must try Raleigh coffee shop whether you live in the City of Oaks or visit Raleigh for the weekend, so stop on in for a coffee, or even just a bit to eat.

Let me know what you think of Idle Hour Coffee in the comments or tell me what is your favorite coffee shop in Raleigh?

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