Elon Eats: Warm coffee, warm atmosphere at Filament Coffee + Tea

Something about the twinkling lights across the ceiling and local art hanging from the walls make Filament Coffee + Tea feel like home.

Less than 30 minutes west of Elon University in downtown Mebane, Filament is a cozy cafe dedicated to serving fresh coffee, tea and pastries, as well as showcasing the work of local artisans.

One of Filament’s baristas, Karly Thomas, said that the cafe attracts a variety of customers, making it an interesting place to spend your time.

“One of the things I love is the diversity of the people that come in,” she said. “You get to interact with kids, families, workers on the street here that work downtown, people who retired — just so many different people, so it’s just nice to have those conversations and to hear their backgrounds and their stories, and even just the little snippets. That’s what I love most about this place.”

Many of the guests coming in and out of the shop are from the Mebane area, but college students from neighboring universities and even people traveling through North Carolina stop there to relax, study or simply grab a cup of coffee.

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Filament serves a number of different lattes and coffees. Photo by Christina Casillo.

When you first walk into the small shop, you are met with a wall lined with local goods for sale. There you can find unique nut butters made in Durham, candles crafted by a woman in Mebane and freshly roasted coffee from Chapel Hill. On the shelves you can browse through a collection of mugs, terrariums made in-house and t-shirts calling North Carolina home.

Filament offers a wide array of teas ranging from no caffeine to medium caffeine, a number of different coffees to try and fresh cold brew. There are also plenty of house-made syrups that customers can try to spice up their typical coffee order.

The pastries sold are locally made by bakers in Hillsborough, Mebane and Burlington. They often offer vegan-friendly baked goods as well.

In addition to the local items, food and drinks for sale, the decorations and furniture in the shop make you feel like you are entering someone’s personal home. The eclectic decor invites people to stay for a while — the gently used guitar seems to wait for someone to play, the wooden tables long for students to study and the couches beg for people to sit.

Filament also hosts events such as poetry contests and art shows. The shop participates monthly in Mebane’s First Thursdays, an event across town where restaurants and stores stay open until 8 p.m. and are invited to host an event for the community. For the month of February, the shop hosted a Galentine’s Day event where they invited women in the community to come enjoy coffee and cake in honor of Valentine’s Day.

For many, Filament can be anything from a place to sit and connect with strangers and friends, to an oasis where you can escape to for a while.

“One of the things I like to say about it is that it’s a good place to rest your bones and to stay a while,” Thomas said. “Even our boss Addie who owns the shop here, she says so much can happen from one cup of coffee — conversations can spark, just so many things can happen just through that.”

Filament Coffee + Tea is located at 108 West Clay Street in Mebane, NC. It’s open Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and closed on Sundays.

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