Customers love our ¡Chacho! Pollo. Try one of the best unfried chicken sandwiches in town. And... it's now available vegan!!!

Try our new "Pick Any 2" Combo for a taste of Taiwan. Served with a probiotic drink.

Refreshing and bursting with fruit flavor!
Made with green tea, cherry syrup, fruit, and lychee boba.


a year ago
I've been trying to get to Cafe El Meson for a while now. I'm glad they updated their hours to more than one day a week!! And it's just around the corner, which is fabulous!! They serve a really good solid cup of coffee. Coffee is well-balanced and lovely. I also had the quesito pastry with cream cheese and fruit spread at the bottom. I highly recommend trying it when you're there. Cafe has a cozy atmosphere with beautiful art, shelves of games, books and magazines (all in good repair and begging to be enjoyed). They take cards with no minimum! I'm looking forward to making this my regular retreat during the week!
- Suzanne C
a year ago
Nice place to hangout. I ordered a green tea latte and it's good. As pricey as Starbucks but I enjoyed myself so it's not a very big deal. The lady that served me was very polite and efficient. They don't have a lot of tables so it can be a little problematic when the place is full. The lady quickly cleaned up a table for me and I really appreciated that. Planning to come back soon.
2 years ago
My Nutellatte was delicious, as was the chocolate cookie à la mode! We came in after a pretty big lunch, so I had to pass on their sandwich selection this time. Hope I can try out the Po' Bao next time I'm in the area on a Saturday. The owner was super friendly and chatted with everyone who came in. Atmosphere was quiet, great for working/studying or a date. The artwork on the wall was particularly cool - I saw a couple customers stop to examine the pieces (by a local artist, apparently).
- Maggie W

About Us

We're about great coffee, fostering creativity, and building community.

Great Coffee
We're excited to bring the southside (holla!) to the northside through Back of the Yards Coffee Co. (they've got a cool mission too). 

There are great non-coffee drinks and food too — with a pinch of Puerto Rican and a dash of Taiwanese flair, but that messes with the alliteration. Therefore, assume that all future mentions of "coffee" on this website implies "coffee, non-coffee drinks, and food."   

Fostering Creativity
We want to promote your passions. Got awesome art you want displayed or music that you want played? Let's talk

Currently, we've got some sick art hanging along our brick wall from local artist, Kelly Courtney.

Building Community
We want to open up our space to the community. Whether it's storytelling, board games, knitting, etc. and whether you have an existing meetup or would like to start one, let's chat.

Add our Calendar to be in-the-know on our events.

The Origin Story   
  • 2005: She has this coffee shop idea (tcsi) where, as the Cheers slogan went, "everybody knows your name." 
  • 2005 - 2014: tcsi is sitting on her shelf (sohs) of "amazing things that she will never do."
  • 2014: She reads "God Cries and An Angel Loses its Wings" about a cantor turned coffee roaster. She emails him and he actually messages her back! She roadtrips to Detroit to see his coffee shop and pick his brain on how to operationalize "relationship-first."
  • 2015: tcsi is still sohs. She comes up with her life mission statement: to create spaces for people to discover and live out their greatness. 
  • 2016: tcsi is still sohs. She meets the owner of Cafe El Meson* who encourages her to take tcsi off the shelf.
  • 2017: She finally takes tcsi off the shelf with the support of the owner of Cafe El Meson and her parents (The shelf is too high and tcsi is too heavy for her to carry alone, she realized).

Why the name "El Meson"?
El Meson means The Inn in Spanish and is inspired by the story of the Good Samaritan: Man was beaten, robbed, and left for dead. Civil Servant sees Man and ignores him. Neighbor sees Man and ignores him. Samaritan (aka Outcast fka Enemy) sees Man and brings him to The Inn where Man becomes fully restored.  

What's with the "2"?
Real answer: that's what the lawyer put down on the articles of incorporation as a placeholder and she was too lazy to ask him to change it. 

Sentimental answer (which also answers the first question): to honor the owner of the original Cafe El Meson and his vision of creating "un lugar para ti," a place for you - to exchange the best humanity has to offer.

*His original location at 4631 S Kedzie Ave, Chicago, IL 60632 is still open. You have to try his Don Diego Chicken Sandwich for which inspired the ¡Chacho! Pollo. Guess where the Puerto Rican influence comes from.

Contact Us


Call now
  • (773) 726-4510


Get directions
6624 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60626
United States

Business Hours

Tue:9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
Wed:9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
Thu:9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
Fri:9:30 AM – 6:00 PM
Sat:8:30 AM – 6:00 PM
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