Intelligentsia Coffee Monadnock Building - Chicago, Illinois

Intelligentsia Coffee Monadnock Building – Chicago, Illinois

Posted on Posted in Coffee, Review, Travel

(This is the follow-up post to:


Now, if you want somewhere more laid back, authentic and cosy, check out:

Intelligentsia Coffee – Monadnock

Monadnock Building
53 West Jackson Blvd.Chicago, Illinois 60604

‘Styled to resemble an Italian espresso bar, this store features original tile floors, marble-topped tables and classic bar stylings. For those of you more familiar with our other coffeebars, this one is a bit more of a classic as compared to our Broadway or Millennium Park locations.’

Easily reached via the Blue line on the ‘L’ train, Intelligentsia Coffee’s Monadnock is a must-go-to place when in search for somewhere to escape the elements with the perfect cup of coffee whilst in the heart of downtown Chicago.


Everything you’d expect from Intelligentsia is here


Add marble table tops, with art deco style interiors and house it within the famous Monadnock building (which was built in 1891) and you have yourself one absolutely gorgeous hideaway with a 1900’s Chicago throwback.


The marble counter which is offset but parallel to the frontage of the shop as you walk inside will definitely grab your attention when your eyes finally reach the back of this gorgeous space after exploring the fine art-deco details of this historic building.


On approach you will see an array of brewing equipment; The Hario V60 Pour-Overs, scales and kettles, Synesso espresso machine and Mazzer grinders, along with all the usual high-end coffee bar equipment on the bench behind.


The production line is split into two sides; left for drip/hand brewed coffee and right for espresso based coffees, with the orders taken in the middle. The service area itself doesn’t allow for too much room to mingle with the staff without being in the way of the next customer in-line, but the space is still planned out well.


The attention to detail is absolutely amazing;


I’m in awe every time I see such a collection of high-end brewing equipment being used in day-to-day service. But that is to be expected when you’re in the presence of a high caliber coffee purveyor like Intelligentsia.


The staff here are also extremely well-dressed; fashionable to the time period which completes the finishing touches to the experience.


To maximise seating; against-the-wall counter seating outlines this space, with a couple of rows of round marble tables occupying the middle of the floor allowing for both private and communal seating arrangements.


Here, I had a beautifully-made Café Latte, and my friend James had a wonderful cup of warm cider.
Everything was perfect as you’d expect from Intelligentsia. This was also my first time trying out warm cider and it was amazing. If it’s any beverage that perfectly captures the essence of Fall, This is it.


We spent the rest of our time here people-watching as we basked in this old world charm tucked away from the windy city.


A feeling like this, There’s just nothing like it anywhere else in Chicago.



Intelligentsia also conducts public tours of their roasting works at 1850 West Fulton Street in Chicago. Conducted on the second Friday of every month, this tour goes for about an hour or so and costs $30. However, you get to drink all the coffees you can, and also walk away with a 12oz bag of freshly roasted coffee beans which I think is a spectacular deal.

Spaces are limited so be sure to reserve a spot beforehand via their website: