Java's Cafe

InfoInfo MapMap
16 Gibbs Street, Rochester, NY 14604 [Directions]
Hours (as of January 2024 per Website)
Sunday - Saturday: 7:00AM to Midnight
[WWW]other locations & hours
Wheelchair Accessible
Phone / Fax
585 232 4820 / 585 232 9098

Java's Cafe was founded in 1992 (see Java's History). This key location - adjacent to Eastman School of Music in the Lower East End - was created in the tradition of coffeehouses in college neighborhoods, decorating the walls with offbeat art and booking latent musical talent. They serve sandwich, desert, coffee, and tea. The company also has its own bakery and offers vegetarian and vegan food. Sidewalk seating is available when weather permits.

In the 2005 mayoral election, several customers protested three John Parrinello signs posted in the window by promoting a boycott of Java's for its support of a Republican.

Free Wi-fi

Javas.jpgDuring the 2008 Jazz Festival rudybang_189168189.jpgby RudyBang sad.jpgA Sad Cookie :( at Java's


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2005-10-21 08:55:13   I can't survive on Eight O'Clock crappy beans any longer. I'll try to stick in a Chris Maj flier ASAP. —ChrisMaj

2005-11-15 22:18:48   They also have a wonderful selection of rotating artwork, a daily poem, frequent open mic nights, and lots of hottie Eastman School students. —MariahBetz

2006-09-20 11:16:09   As far as I know, this is the only place that makes real chai (not from powder or concentrate) in town. They have a great funky atmosphere. —EllenKelsey

2007-01-28 17:20:44   I'd rather light myself on fire on than go to Java's for any reason. It is (poorly) staffed by arrogant little self-righteous "hipster" pricks who don't even attempt to mask their obvious contempt for your patronage, as if they're volunteer workers whom you woke up from a nap to make you coffee. They also won't let you order a mocha, and insist that you call it a "cappuccino with chocolate flavoring". Here in America, that IS a mocha. Ugh. Worst place ever. —MisterElkington

2007-02-05 09:39:34   as sad as it is, the coffee here is overpriced and pretty much sucks. I'm all for supporting local businesses, but this place makes me want to go to starbucks. (i feel dirty even saying it) —NjTourist

2007-03-17 14:46:35   I admit that Java's employees can be a bit flippant — I practically go there everyday and half of them still treat me like a stranger. Not to be a jerk, but they do get continually accosted by people who don't know what they're ordering despite standing in line for 10 minutes or by people getting pissed off when their "Macchiato" is not what they thought it would be. In all honesty, comments such as "here in America, that IS a mocha" don't help much — a mocha is yet another syrupy latte abortion invented by the American coffee market to mask the taste of inferior beans. Now, on to Java's... :-) As they get their coffee from Joe's (known around the country, no less), it's great. Lunch menu is always fresh, and most baked goods are well-done (I typically stick with things that I know are from the Little Bakery). But as a true coffeehouse in Rochester that stays open until Midnight every night and offers a quality product, they are the only game in town and a very good one at that. —RochesterGuy

2007-03-18 18:41:03   Word, Rochester Guy, word. —RudyBang

2007-03-21 18:28:16   Java's actually does take plastic at a $5 minimum. So you'll have to order $5 worth of cookies and coffee, or be forced to leave a tip. —DoctorRachel

2007-05-04 11:17:09   The only thing this place has going for it is location. They don't even make "real" lattes and cappucinos. Both to them are the same, one is just bigger. AND they froth it in the cup. Its like a factory- they just whip them out without thought or artistic form. Most of the time they burn the milk too. Then they put in a fancy cup with a saucer to make it look "quality." sorry they have all you amateurs and idiots fooled. slobs. —RedDress

2007-05-11 17:25:31   I like Java's for the atmosphere (read: I like to people-watch) and the chai. After having Java's chai every other day while I was an RIT student, I can't stand the powdered-mix chai that all the other places serve. And I just like pretentious hipsters, what can I say? :) Subcultures are fascinating. —AdrienneDahler

2007-09-09 11:32:17   I have to say the quality of their food & drink is piss poor now. Their cookies and snack bars are awful, I got a smoothie and it was just sugar water, and my friend got a flavored coffee with hardly any flavor. This was downtown last night. I go to the RIT and MCC locations as well. —JoannaLicata

2008-03-29 12:32:09   Ithink that Java's is cool, although I must say I only go there once in a blue moon. I like the art work and the basement pool tables. It's a great place for younger people. This summer I saw one of the greatest concerts right outside of the was awesome. all I ever get is there hot chocolate and cookies both of which are good. —EnishaCray

2008-04-01 09:55:21   While yes, Java's is full of hipster art-pricks, it's still a fairly decent place to grab a drink. Their assorted mixed drinks are good (try a Chaplain or Terrapin if you don't believe me), and while their baked goods aren't always fresh or even good at all (at least not at the RIT location), I can vouch for their chocolate croissants as being amazing. So while it's not perfect, I often find myself starting off my days in the RIT Java's - it's a great place to wake up with a coffee or to come in the afternoon to take a break and unwind. —TonyFolenta

2008-04-28 23:50:59   The best espresso in town. Hands down. —SmitaRao

2008-06-15 17:30:22   I have not been here in a while, but my friends and I used to frequent this place. The "Shot in the Dark" is one of my favorites. I also enjoy the Goya Soda's on a hot summers night. —MikeDixon

2008-08-16 21:57:32   I love Java's more than anything in the world. When friends and family visit from out of town, Java's is as high on the priority list as Wegmans. I find it to be the perfect place to hang out almost every night with any number of people. I crave visual stimulation, so the walls layered with art and the strange looking people satisfy my appetite. The baristas really are wonderful- I am not sure where these hard feelings are coming from. Perhaps if you smile, say thank you, or make small talk they will stop being arrogant and self-righteous. That's probably how they feel about you. I truly believe they have the best coffee in town; many people I know have started drinking their coffee black because their coffee is so complex in flavor.It is very clearly recently roasted, and stored in cedar drawers. I think that may be all the difference. Their chai is made from fresh ingredients and spices, and is honestly the best I've ever had. If you appreciate fine teas, I don't know why you don't live here! They serve very fresh, aromatic loose leaf tea and if you want them to combine any of them, they will. Their lunch sandwiches are heavenly. Very unusual combinations that will leave you addicted. I am not sure what sort of super-coffee you are comparing javes to in order to conclude that their stuff is "piss poor", but I must say again they really know how to roast. Really amazing espresso and macchiatos. The people who manage Java's are really interesting and prominent in the local community. Awesome people and I feel good giving them my money. Rochester would not be without Java's! —tracypee

2008-10-21 21:13:11   Not all of us hipsters are pricks. Let's not stereotype now. —BillyG.

2009-02-27 12:59:41   Very sadly I have to agree with Joanna's post. Quality differs dramatically from visit to visit. Sometimes I still get a great brew — but much more frequently my coffee tastes weak and has an acidic finish (this could be many things: water too hot, too few grounds, leaving it on the burner too long, etc.). I haven't seen Mike around as much (he must be busy w/ Good Luck) and he's allowing the baristas to run things with seemingly not much oversight. It's not their job and it shows. Between my mokka pot and my Chemex there's little reason to go much of anywhere around here for coffee outside of course the necessary caffeine fix. —RochesterGuy

2010-01-19 23:51:46   I really like going there to do some work. But some nights, like tonight, they just crank up the music. Why do they do that? If I want music so loud that I can't hear the person sitting next to me, I'll go to a club. —VikramManjunath

2010-03-21 12:51:57   I have been to Javas many many times because it was logically convenient and popular. I refuse to go any longer, now that I realize that there are so many better options in Rochester. Every time I go the baristas are severely rude and unhappy to see customers. I have never had a good experience with them when I go there. They have a varied selection of teas and the only place that carries real chai but it isn't good enough to stand alone. Their coffee is okay, but like I said there is better in Rochester. My favorite part about Javas is the art, it absolutely stimulates conversation, if you can hear the other person talking, because the music is too loud to hear yourself think. I don't recommend the place over other coffee places in Rochester. Rude does not equal cool. —aurorasmith

2010-03-21 12:53:46   Oh, and I forgot to mention their inconsistencies. You can order a latte one day and have half foam and order it the next and half it too watery. They are never consistent with drinks and clearly only a couple of the employees know how to make them right every time, but good luck getting them to do it unless you know them. —aurorasmith

2010-10-27 01:30:55   Coffee is OK. Many times it tastes over-roasted. The servers can sometimes be rude and arrogant. Sometimes a cool hangout if there aren't too many high school kids around. I prefer Boulder. —SargtGrumbles

2011-03-27 21:43:32   ugh all the people who work here are the most pretentious arrogant little hipsters. its a huge turn off that when you order a drink you r mad to feel like an annoying idiot. as for the actual product its not bad i like the brewed coffee but their lattes are not lattes and the steam the milk in foam cups! how does that correlate with the hipster belief to save the earth. in any case if i could get the coffee with out the attitude i might actually go there again. maybe ill give it another shot next year. —antco

2011-10-02 14:55:34   I love this place. So many memories from my days as a UR student. Great place to chill in the evening during the summer too, sitting outside as downtown turns to night. —EileenF

2012-05-13 17:43:55   I don't know what's up with all these negative comments, but I'm at Javas at least once a week and I find all of the baristas and servers pretty pleasant. Never a negative attitude or any problems with their coffee. I guess haters gonna hate. —ChrisOlin

2013-01-18 18:36:26   I went here a couple weeks ago, late in the evening (I'm a morning person) for a meeting. When I got to the counter, there was no one in sight. I waited until the young woman who was deep in thought bothered to go behind the counter from the table she was sitting at, rolling her eyes for good measure. I asked for tea. She sighed and rolled her eyes again as if I had interrupted her from some complex philosophical question that she had been probing. She asked me how I wanted it. I said hot. She then made a snide comment about how " of course" it would be hot, rolling her eyes again. Seriously you're a barrista, not a philosopher. If you want to be a philosopher, go to the U of R and get a PhD. She claimed to be out of milk and sugar, and of course couldn't be bothered to get fresh milk and sugar. While I don't expect to be waited on hand-and-foot and treated like royalty, I am PAYING for the drink. I think it's obnoxious that a barrista acts like it's SUCH an imposition on her because a customer would have the nerve to disturb her musing about the origin of the universe b/c the customer wants a cupa. Goes w/o saying she didn't get a tip from me and I haven't been back since. There are much better places in Rochester to hang out w/o the attitude: Boulder, Dark Horse, Coffee Connection, Artisan's, Equal=Grounds, Leaf&Bean. —Rochnat

2013-02-16 23:50:25   I'll comment first on the service - servers were all really nice on my visit today. Coffee was fantastic - didn't need sugar, and the foam was perfect. Atmosphere: fantastic, little crowded, but cozy: art on the walls, wooden tables, carpets. Also: it was very hard for me to find this info. on the net, but yes, Java's does serve actual food — only sandwiches, but they're made in the morning and sell out on a first-come first-serve basis. Had tofu and some cheese sandwich, which were just okay. Other exciting options, like an avocado caprese, were sold out by the time we arrived around 2 on a Saturday afternoon. —LH