6100 South Blackstone Ave, Chicago

Build Coffee is a coffee shop and bookstore in the Experimental Station on the South Side of Chicago. Surrounded by community-driven non-profits and civic journalism projects, Build is designed as a hub of great coffee and radical collaboration.

We act as a small venue for performances, workshops, gallery shows, book groups, game nights, and more. We also sell used books, local small press publications, journals, comics, art books, and zines.

The newsletter archive is available here.

Build Coffee is now open!


Build Coffee is located at: 6100 South Blackstone Ave
Chicago, IL 60637
We’re in the Experimental Station, a non-profit working to build independent cultural infrastructure on the South Side of Chicago. Our neighbors within the two-story brick building include bike shop/mentoring program Blackstone Bicycle Works and three of the most exciting journalism projects in the city: the Invisible Institute, City Bureau, and the South Side Weekly.

We also share the building with the 61st St. Farmers Market, a year-round market with fresh food from local and regional farms.

We have Build Coffee tote bags and coasters available in our online shop. Check it out here.

Our bookshop features carefully curated used books and new stock from local presses and indie publishers. If you’re an artist or small press and would like to get your books/zines/comics/chapbooks on our shelves, check out our consignment form and get in touch at books@buildcoffee.org. We also gratefully accept book donations!

We serve coffee from HalfWit Coffee Roasters, who are small like us but serious about their beans. Like we do, they think coffee should be thoughtfully sourced, roasted and brewed with love and skill, and served without pretension.

Our pie is from Justice of the Pies, an out-of-this world local bakery. We make our toast from Publican Quality Bread, which features local grains and award-winning, naturally leavened loaves. Whole boules and baguettes are available Wednesdays and Saturdays!

Build Coffee acts as a small venue for performances, workshops, gallery shows, book groups, game nights, and more. Interested in hosting with us? The space is available to rent for public and private events. Shoot an email to our booker directly at events@buildcoffee.org.

Thursday, July 27

6:00 pm — 8:00 pm

This Public Newsroom is a special collaboration with City Bureau’s friends from CIR’s Reveal podcast, public radio’s first one-hour radio show and podcast dedicated to investigative reporting.  On Thursday, July 27, the Reveal team will walk us through the basics of audio recording while sharing audio samples, techniques and tools. Join us to explore new sounds and learn how to record audio like a pro.

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Saturday, July 29

6:00 pm — 8:00 pm

Christopher ThoughtPoet Brown presents “#HeartMelanin: The Prelude,” part one of a two-part photography series showcasing the work of ThoughtPoetsOpinion. Opening night will feature performances by E’mon Lauren, Brittany Nacole, Jorge Mikell, and Solo the Dweeb, plus sounds by Lisa Decibel. Music starts 6:30! $10 suggested donation.

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Thursday, August 10

6:00 pm — 8:00 pm

What makes a neighborhood good? How would you design your ideal neighborhood? Your ideal city? During this Public Newsroom we’re exploring these questions with Chicago Architecture Foundation’s Vice President of Education and Experience Gabrielle Lyon as she presents the graphic novel No Small Plans. The book follows Chicago youth as they steward what they want changed about their city. Public Newsroom guests will learn about the book and also explore this theme themselves by designing their ideal neighborhood.

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Friday, August 18

6:00 pm — 7:30 pm

Come play We Love Katamari and learn some video game history and theory with your trusty hosts, game designers Mason Arrington and Addie Barron! We Love Katamari is an oddball video game by Japanese artist and designer Keita Takahashi. The game centers around The Prince and his katamari, a highly adhesive ball that can roll over and absorb anything smaller than itself. We’ll be projecting the game for an audience and playing in two-player cooperative mode. Watch some sample gameplay for the game here.

Learn more →

We’d love to hear from you. To get in touch, email info@buildcoffee.org or fill out the contact form below.