Where to Find Dairy-free Lattes in Seoul

The sudden summer-like weather in Seoul has me craving more cold drinks. Teas. Smoothies. Iced caramel macchiatos.  Iced matcha lattes. Getting my latte fix can be tricky because most cafes in Seoul exclusively use cow’s milk. The good news is, there are some cafes that offer alternative milk options, and their numbers are steadily growing. I’ll share some of my favorite ones with you here. Of course, these are in addition to the 15 vegan-friendly cafes that I mentioned in a previous post (here). The places on this list are smaller and their menus focus more on coffee and beverages than food.  In addition to the address and hours, I’ve also listed the milk options offered by each cafe. Whether you’re vegan, lactose-intolerant, or simply prefer the taste of alternative plant-based milks over cow’s milk, there’s something on this list for you!

1. Peer Coffee Roasters 피어커피
Address: 서울 용산구 한남동 684-32
58-3 Itaewon-ro 54-gil, Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Hangangjin Station Exit 1
Hours: Weekdays 9am-6pm; Weekend 11am-10pm (6pm on Sun)
Milk options: Almond, Soy

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This is my favorite cafe/coffee roaster in the Hannam area. It’s small, cute, the coffee is good, and the lattes aren’t loaded with sugar. I only wish their salted caramel latte could be made dairy-free because it sounds amazing and I would love to try it. There’s a discount for bringing your own mug/tumbler to enjoy your beverage in-store and for taking your order to-go. If you’re really in love with the coffee here, they sell their coffee blends here for you to take home, including a decaf blend!

Website: http://peercoffee.co.kr/
IG: peer_coffee_roasters

2. Chansbros 찬스브로 커피
Address: 서울 용산구 이태원동 녹사평대로 222-1
222-1 Noksapyeong-daero, Itaewon 2-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Noksapyeong Station Exit 2
Hours: Everyday 9am-10pm
Milk options: Soy

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This cafe is conveniently located a short walk from Noksapyeong station. Because it’s in the midst of other cafes that only serve cow’s milk, it would be easy to stop in, pick up a dairy-free latte, and then join your friends at another cafe or restaurant.  They offer a nice variety of coffee, so if you’re picky about how acidic your coffee is, this is a good option for you. Because the owner also speaks English, feel free to ask him questions about tasting notes or the coffee’s origins.

3. Café Orienté 오리앙떼
Address: 이태원로54길 16-9
16-9 Itaewon-ro 54-gil, Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Hangangjin Station Exit 1
Hours: Everyday 12pm-9pm (Closed Mon)
Milk options: Pistachio

This cafe’s minimalist interior is meant to strike up conversation and it would be soothing if it weren’t for the gangsta rap music blasting from the speakers. I don’t know if that’s what they play all the time or just on Thursdays but it was a little jarring. Either way, the pistachio milk latte, made with in-house pistachio milk, is worth a try; try the intriguing cube desserts too (if you’re not vegan).

IG: cafeoriente_

4. Le Cafe 르 카페
Address: 서울 용산구 신흥로 33
33, Sinheung-ro Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Noksapyeong Station Exit 4
Hours: Everyday 7:30am-11pm
Milk options: Soy

This is cafe/roastery is a favorite hangout for expats in the area. Some time last year the owner was testing a vegan muffin recipe at the request of his vegan customers. The response must have been pretty good because I heard a couple days ago that it’s been added to the permanent menu. Now vegans can enjoy it with a nice soymilk latte. Not into the vegan muffin? No prob. Try some of the small plates and snacks on their modest menu.

5. Momo 모모
Address: 서울특별시 용산구 이태원로42길 46
46 Itaewon-ro 42-gil, Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Hangangjin Station Exit 1
Hours: Mon-Fri 11am-12am (Closed Sat & Sun)
Milk options: Soy

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Momo is just one of the many, many bar/cafes hidden in the Hannam backstreets. It’s easy to miss because there are more posh eateries in the immediate area, but the dark interior and chill vibe is a welcome reprieve from the hustle and bustle; it’s a nice place to chill if all the really popular cafes in the area are packed. It’s not a roastery, like many cafes on this list, so the quality of the coffee may not be on-par.

6. Coffee Montage 커피몽타주
Address: 서울시 강동구 성내동 555-5
Seongnae-dong 555-5 Gangdong-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Gangdong-gu Office Station Exit 3
Hours: Mon-Fri 8am-8pm; Weekends 10am-8pm
Milk options: Almond, Oat

I heard about this place from Cayly’s blog Byrd and Bean, who suggests having the oat milk with the ‘Sense And Sensibilty’ bright and sweet roast. Their offerings change on a daily basis, but if we’re going by the reviews on Kakao and Naver, everything is pretty fabulous, so you can’t go wrong with what you choose. This cafe is a little out of the way for me, but if you live in this area or are seeing the nearby sights, check it out for sure!

Website: http://www.coffeemontage.com/
IG: coffeemontage

7. Zapangi 자판기
Address: 서울특별시 마포구 망원동 400-2
79, World Cup-ro 13-gil, Mapo-gu, Seoul
Nearest Station: Mangwon Station Exit 2
Hours: Everyday 11am-11pm
Milk options: Soy

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I lived right across the street from this cafe for three months and didn’t know it was one of the most Instagram-worthy places in Seoul. Oops. People have raved about the “cafe hidden by a pink vending machine door,” and tourists pause in their journey to take photos here all the time. I didn’t try their cute cakes in tins or ice cream because they’re not dairy-free, but I did enjoy their soy milk tea. It’s one of the few places you can find it in Seoul!

IG: zapangi_official

8. Unknown Coffee 언노운커피
Address: 312-4 울지로 4가 종구 서울
312-4 Euljiro 4-ga, Seoul
Nearest Station: Euljiro 3-ga Exit 3
Hours: Mon-Fri 8:00am-8:00pm, Sat-Sun 9:00am-6:00pm
Milk options: Almond, Soy

This cafe lets you customize your drink more than usual. You can add extra shots and toppings in addition to choosing either soy or almond milk. Plus, there’s a discount for bringing your own mug or to-go cup, and I hear that they occasionally showcase work by local artists.

9. Paul Bassett
Location: Various, it’s a chain!
Milk Options: Soy

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Photo source: Paul Bassett Cafe website

This coffee chain is named after an Australian barista who won the World Barista Championship in 2003. It’s one of the nicer (and more expensive) coffee chains in Seoul. The seasonal beverages are tasty, innovative, and very different from the usual fare found at Starbucks. I hear they can make you a latte with soy milk if you ask, but this might vary per branch. Drop by one near you and give it a shot!

10. Angel-in-Us
Location: Various, it’s chain!
Milk options: Soy

This_is_a_logo_for_Angel-in-us

Angel-in-Us cafes are almost as easy to find as Starbucks in South Korea, which is great because as of last year, they now have a soymilk option on their menu! When first introduced, there were clear signs about it in every branch, but now the signage has disappeared. When I went to a branch in Haengdang last week, they made me a soy vanilla latte when I asked, so it seems like it’s still unofficially on their menu, yay! (I was going to post photos of the cafe interior, but when I saw those PR photos, I couldn’t resist. I see you, Angel-in-Us, trying to bring out the Devil-in-Us.)


If you’re in Korea and planning to check out some of my recommendations, copy and paste the Korean address into either Naver Maps or Kakao Maps, not Google Maps! It doesn’t work very well in Korea and you risk getting lost.

If you don’t see your favorite milk alternative, you can always make your own latte at home, as I often do. Not only does it save a little cash, but it also offers a level of customization that you can’t get at a cafe. You can buy your own coffee from a roastery or grocery store and then add flavored syrup, sugar, MCT oil, and/or your favorite plant-based milk. Here’s where you can get milk alternatives in Seoul:

  • Soymilk – convenience stores, grocery stores, pretty much anywhere; there are options with no added sugar or supplemented with calcium and vitamin D
  • Almond milk – most convenience stores and grocery stores now stock original and unsweetened Almond Breeze (sometimes the chocolate or banana flavors!)
  • Oat milk – Olive Young and Vegan Space (in HBC, website here)
  • Coconut milk – Vegan Space, Olive Young (some of them), Coupang
  • Cashew milk – Vegan Space
  • Pistachio milk – Vegan Space and Coupang
  • Rice milk – Vegan Space and Coupang
  • Hemp milk – Coupang

Hope this helps current residents and people planning to visit or live in Seoul. While I was doing research, I came across some new cafes that offer non-dairy lattes or heard about existing cafes adding them to their menu. I think I’ll definitely have to write a Part 2 at some point. If you have questions or know of other cafes that serve dairy-free lattes in Seoul, let me know!

 

4 thoughts on “Where to Find Dairy-free Lattes in Seoul”

  1. I always wondered which shops offered alternatives to milk beyond Starbucks. I know a lot of my lactose intolerant friends were struggling to find places which is why the tiny cafe in my old rural town was so popular (soy milk options!) I’m surprised to learn that Angel-in-us offers alternatives, I’ll have to take a closer look at their menu next time I’m near one. Also I’m glad you were able to enjoy Zapangi’s tea. Kind of wish I’d tried that instead. Their regular drinks are loaded with whipped cream/sugar. (It’s intense T_T)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Feel free to share this post with your lactose-intolerant friends! The struggle is so real here haha
      Yeah, next time you’re at Angel-in-Us, just ask them! Some branches might say no, but all the ones I’ve been to recently have soymilk.

      Like

  2. Thank you for this! I’ve watched to check out Zapangi for a while but I didn’t think they had milk alternatives! Can’t wait to try the soy milk tea. 🙂

    Like

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