Hi there, I'm Manali! A wedding & portrait photographer serving DC, VA & Worldwide. Click through for all my favorites from recent sessions, adventures and travels, as well as tips & tricks for clients! Grab a cup of coffee, relax, and feel free to connect with me elsewhere as well! Cheers to you!
Manali Photography is a wedding & couples' photography business based out of Charlottesville, VA. When she's not making couples laugh or teaching other photographers how to save time in their biz, you can find her at a vineyard with wine & cheese in hand toasting with friends & family!
This blog post was requested by a fellow friend and I’m honestly surprised that I haven’t already blogged about this! My love of coffee kicked in right towards the end of high school as I progressively moved from “spiking” my hot chocolate with coffee to going all in and getting hooked in college to survive the engineering grind. I now love channeling my love of coffee and getting to explore new places on the hunt for a great cup of joe! From my adventures around the Virginia & D.C. area, here are a couple of tried and true favorites of mine in no particular order!
Cafein in Chantilly
This hidden gem is starting to become NOT so hidden! I’ve been here at several different points during the week, on Saturday mornings or Tuesday afternoons, and the place is ALWAYS packed!! They use Stumptown Coffee making every single drink I’ve ever tried here absolutely delicious. My go to here is the Davant Coffee!
Dolcezza is actually known for their gelato, but I LOVE their coffee as well! The chain is all around D.C. with my favorite two coffee shops being at CityCenter and at the Wharf! The Wharf actually serves up really delicious breakfast food as well! One of my favorite coffee moments was when I naively got a Gibraltar which I didn’t realize until after I was halfway through the tiny cup that it is TWO shots of straight espresso with some foam. Needless to say I was WIRED for the rest of the afternoon and able to get a LOT done despite the jitters haha!
This was my Ballston haunt! So much of my business was grown in the booths along the back wall over endless cups of hazelnut cappuccinos here! I was so grateful to have this place in my backyard for a year and call myself a local there! They also have fantastic other flavors like Toasted Marshmallow and speciality coffee flavors like the Nutty Irishman.Also going to throw in an honorable mention for Tivoli which is another Ballston favorite for me! It’s conveniently located right before the metro and I used to pick up a cup before my metro commute to work every day!
Milli Joe’s / Atlas
Had to throw in some Charlottesville favorites in here! Milli Joe’s is GREAT and located near Downtown Mall! I actually tried out Milli’s AFTER I graduated since I didn’t have a car during college but it is so worth the trip out there. Also, Atlas which is closer to Grounds, makes HOMEMADE syrups which you have to try!
From living in Arlington really close to D.C. for a year, here’s a couple of other places that I loved getting to try out!
Central Coffee Bar in Rosslyn is such a great place to work out of!
E.S.P. in Old Town Alexandria
Ebeneezer’s near Union Station
La Colombe all over
Blue Bottle Coffee in Georgetown
Bourbon near Foggy Bottom
Compass Coffee all around (have had client meetings in Rosslyn!)
Swing’s near Metro Center
Saxby’s in Georgetown is cozy
PAUL which is super Parisian and cute!
Pitango (also has gelato but great coffee & specifically affogato!)
Places that are still on my list to try out:
The Wydown Coffee Bar
I hope that this list of favorites inspires you to adventure out of the house during this winter in the hopes of finding your next favorite cup of joe! Also, thank you to Hannah Smith for the photo!
If you enjoyed this post, you should binge read these as well!