Settlement Co. Cafe Waterloo – My Review

When you walk into Settlement Co., you’ll wonder if you’re really inside a café, or if you’ve stumbled into someone’s backyard garden, for the café is filled with little green plants growing up out of their pots and into the bright sunlight. On the wall the words Settlement Co. are spelled out of emerald shrubbery.

Cafe interior with plants

Settlement Co., located at 23 King Street North in Waterloo, is in fact a café, not a garden, serving quality coffee, baked goods, sandwiches, salads, and toast topped with delicious combinations. It is open bright and early Monday to Friday from 7am until 10:30pm, Saturdays from 8am until 10:30pm and Sundays from 8am until 10pm.

Settlement Co Counter


At Settlement Co., the baristas know their coffee, and they offer multiple brewing methods to deliver you the perfect cup. It’s up to you whether you choose a drip coffee, a pour over, an aeropress, a steampunk, or your own personal French press. But whichever you pick, you can be sure that each method produces a delicious, smooth cup of coffee.

For those hot summer days when a warm beverage is simply out of the question, they also offer an organic cold brew for a refreshing way to satisfy your caffeine craving.

Cold brew coffee

Aside from coffee, there are a number of delicious espresso-based drinks, a warm, spiced chai latte, and hot chocolate. There is also a fine selection of loose-leaf teas. The staff are friendly, knowledgeable and easy to talk to, and always happy to help you with the menu.

Behind the cafe's counter


When you enter the café, the first thing you smell is the delectable aroma of fresh toast. At Settlement Co., they’ve taken the simple idea of toast and jazzed it up with fancy toppings, such as avocado, hummus, brie, Nutella, and many more combinations. When I was here, I ordered “The Wanderer”: toast slathered in creamy almond butter, drizzled with sweet honey and topped with crunchy granola.

Waffles are also served from 11am until 8pm. And just like their toast, Settlement Co. likes to dress up their waffles with delicious additions such as fresh fruit, whipped cream, peanut butter….there’s even one with bacon jam!

Baked goods behind glass

Each day, salads and grilled sandwiches are also available. For dessert, a variety of freshly baked cookies, scones, squares and cakes are served to indulge your sweet tooth.


The atmosphere is incredibly unique and aesthetically pleasing. The beige, exposed-brick walls and contemporary accents give the café a slightly industrial feel. The ceiling is decorated with shelves holding potted plants, their green leaves poking out and over the pots, livening up the space.

Cafe interior

Cafe interior

Near the back, a soft, cushioned bench lines the wall with patterned pillows for lounging. There are many clean, white tables with comfortable, modern looking chairs for sitting. But my absolute favourite feature of Settlement Co. is the wall covered in leafy plants, making you feel like you’re having your lunch outside, like a picnic!

Outside the back door is a small, cute patio facing a quiet side street rather than busy King, making it a lovely spot to sit in the fresh air and enjoy a beverage with friends.

Wall of plants

I was very impressed with the music at Settlement Co. When I arrived, the Beach Boys were singing out “Good Vibrations”, followed by the familiar voice of Bob Dylan, and then a rendition of “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” by the Animals. Every song that came on was a song that I knew and loved, or a song that I wanted to know.

Private Space for Functions

If you are in need of a private space for a function or a meeting, Settlement Co. has you covered. The Coffice (a portmanteau of the words “coffee” and “office”) can host up to 50 people, and the space and menu can be tailored specifically for your event.

Booth in cafe


Settlement Co. just opened a new location in downtown Kitchener at 1 Victoria Street South. This location is open 6am until 10pm Monday to Friday and 8am until 10pm Saturday and Sunday, so you can enjoy some delicious toast or a foamy latte no matter if you’re uptown or downtown.


Maybe it’s the friendly presence of the plants, maybe it’s the relaxed music playing through the space, maybe it’s the comforting smell of bread toasting and coffee brewing, but there is something about Settlement Co. that seems so peaceful and inviting.

It’s a wonderful place to meet with friends, and I also think it’s the perfect environment for working, (in fact, I wrote this article in a cozy table in the corner next to the wall of plants, very content with my coffee and my toast, sunlight spilling in from the window onto my notebook). Outlets are also scattered all over, so customers can easily charge their laptops and phones.

Seating by the wall of plants

A settlement is an establishment of people, where people come together, where people exist together. This is the reason for the name Settlement Co. It is a place where people gather; it’s its own community. It’s a lovely café.

michelle brooke bio

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