A locals guide: Carts, containers and cabins for coffee on the go

A locals guide: Carts, containers and cabins for coffee on the go

Written by Charlotte Lang

Posted on Thursday 8 December 2022

Let’s be honest, we don’t hang about, do we. We’re constantly on the move, going from place to place, running errands, exploring new routes and attending important occasions.

We usually don’t linger too long because we've got places to be, and are probably already running 2 minutes late. So, where would we be without the little pit stops fuelling us along the way?

From Atawhai to Riwaka, Hope to Nelson, we’ve collated an account of the road-side lifesavers scattered about our region that boost our moods and provide us with energy on the go.

We love to support our small local businesses so check out some of our locals’ favourite spots to pop in for caffeine and treats on the run!

Beacon Coffee Cart 

Sundial Square, Croucher Street, Richmond

"The best coffee in Richmond with real milk from the local Oaklands farm and where you often meet some friendly locals. The owner Sam really cares for the environment with milk in glass bottles and compostable cups and lids." - Jamila

Based in Sundial Square by the water feature and using locally roasted Crossbow Coffee, see them for a coffee and chat or take away. Closed on Sundays.

beacon coffee cartPhoto: Beacon Coffee Cart

The Goods Espresso Bar

118 McShane Road, Appleby

"The best cup of coffee I've had in the Nelson Tasman Region! I've never seen someone with such a passion for their job; Taylor supplies a great coffee and a good yarn if you're feeling chatty. I'm a black coffee drinker but I have to get a latte at The Goods because the milk work is so impressive that you can't turn it down! 10/10!" - Ben

Run by born and bred Nelson local Taylor, stop by for a good brew from Flight Coffee and some good yarns in the sunshine. Check our their Facebook page for opening hours.


Photo: The Goods Espresso Bar

The Daily Grind Kitchen Edition

Located opposite the Tāhunanui Beach Playground

"The customer service was very delightful! The food was even better, I could tell that it was well thought out and that passion was put into cooking the food. The doughnuts were amazing!" - Stephanie

Run by local chef Alesha and serving coffee as well as an extensive menu to tickle every taste bud. Open Tuesday – Sunday.

daily grind kitchen edition

Photo: Tripadvisor

Brews & Bikes

193 Nayland Road, Stoke
"Absolutely yummy coffee, I go there basically every day I’m at work! They know me by name and start making my order as soon as they see me. Such amazing, kind, service and such a chill vibe. Definitely recommend!" - Tyla
Fuelling your adventures with Flight Coffee, offering damn good treats and the biggest cheese toasties you’ll ever find. Check their Facebook page for opening hours. 

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Ruby's Espresso

Akersten Street, Port Nelson

"Fantastic coffee, amazing staff and a gorgeous view. What more could you ask for when stopping for your daily cuppa!" - Michelle

Recently upgraded from a cart to a container, the girls at Ruby’s serve local Sublime coffee and food that’s good for the soul. Situated next to the Nelson Marina, park up on a bean bag in the sunshine and take a moment to yourself. Open 7 days, until 4pm.

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Valley Coffee

4 Dodson Valley Road, Atawhai

"Super laid back and always a treat. The owner, Toby, constructed the café himself, and is a super friendly guy to chat with. When it comes to making coffee he's a perfectionist but laid back at the same time. Probably the most consistently good coffee in Nelson, I'm so happy to be living nearby" - Ryan

The cutest little cart you ever did see, serving local Swallow coffee, situated next to the 4 Square. Open Monday - Saturday.

271586129 554820812905452 8445752411296377958 nPhoto: Valley Coffee

Joker Coffee Cart

Botanical Reserve, 189 Milton Street, The Wood, Nelson

"Tracy makes the best coffee, using the best Pomeroys beans, with the best attitude in town. Love this spot. Great way to get some fresh air (or exercise) and enjoy a cup of goodness and fantastic chat from the locals and Tracy herself. A must-do whether you are a Nelson local or visiting." - Renee

Top off a walk to the Centre of New Zealand with a locally roasted Pomeroy’s brew from the Joker. Not only is the owner, Tracy, a lovely human, the coffee is great and the cart is based at a dog friendly reserve - perfect for dog lovers! Open Monday – Friday.

r77e Joker Coffee Cart design 2021 09Photo: Restaurant Guru

Cheesy Deans

Nelson Farmers Market, 23 Halifax Street, Nelson

"Best toasted sandwiches ever and and such an innovative blend of flavours! Thanks Corey for the delicious lunch and chat after our bush walk. You’ve got a winner there." - Marian
Serving up specialty toasties and coffee, you can find Cheesy Deans at the Nelson Farmers Market every Wednesday (8am – 1pm). 

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Photo: Cheesy Deans

La planta café 

15 Vanguard Street, Nelson

"What a lovely spot. Best hot choccy in town, delicious alfajores (yummy chocolate+pb and jam biscuits) and tasty medialunas (Argentinian croissants). What else could you ask for? Ah yes, some great baristas to chat with!" - Emanuela 

The first café in Nelson to go zero single use cups, La planta café is proud to be as organic and sustainable as possible. A Latino themed coffee truck serving Pomeroy’s coffee and offering a plant-based menu; that’s well worth a visit in our books! 

314474158 141917421923142 4753619587263292539 nPhoto: La planta café

Coastal Café

Port Motueka Marina, Ward Street, Motueka 

"Another jewel in our region. A must visit and great if you are on the coastal cycle track. Amazing food and drink." - Gordon

The Coastal Café is a takeaway coffee cart situated on the waterfront in Motueka, serving delicious coffee and home baked treats; a local favourite. Open Wednesday – Sunday.

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Photo: Tripadvisor

Little Red Coffee Cart

11 Greenwood Street, Motueka

"Little Red Coffee Cart is my favorite place in Motueka to get a coffee everyday. Lisa's homemade baking is beautiful, especially the toasted savory muffins. Her friendly banter tops your dining experience. Everything is top notch and of a high standard so, when in Motueka be sure to find out for yourself." - Vickie

See Lisa at the Little Red Coffee cart, for great L’affare coffee and her home baked goodies. Open Sunday - Friday.

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Little Dynamite Go Go Food & Coffee

Main Road Riwaka (opposite Hop Federation Brewery)

"Great coffee at a good price, perfectly made EVERY time. It's the locals go to place for coffee, yummy pies and pastries. If you are on the Great Taste Trail this is the place to go in Riwaka. It's only 250m off the trail and easy to find." - Nicky

Offering café style food and local Sublime coffee to go go in the heart of Riwaka. Stop by on your way to the beach or the bay! Open Tuesday - Sunday.

106 515485499

Photo: Restaurant Guru