Last month, we jetted to Seattle for a training session with La Marzocco, maker of our beloved espresso machines. So while Kevin spent the day in class learning the mechanical ins and outs of coffee making, Ali went on a caffeinated binge, stopping at every café in the vicinity of downtown and beyond. While no means exhaustive (as Imbibe’s list’s is) we offer our favorite spots from our three-day coffee mission in the Emerald City.
The London Plane : Part flower workshop, part café, part specialty grocer: All parts perfect. Abloom with flowers and the best Levain bread I’ve ever tasted, The London Plane is truly the loveliest place for breakfast and coffee (they brew Elm Nine Swans). And the toasts are to die for (think parsnip-date butter with pomegranate and toasted pistachio).
Honor Coffee: I initially mistook Honor for a humdrum mall café, only to find myself sipping the best latte of my life. With three outposts peppered throughout the city, I swung by the downtown roost on my morning walk from our hotel, the Palladian (an a.m. routine bookended by our evening habit of having a glass of draught Fernet in the sleek lobby bar, Pennyroyal.
Odd Fellows Cafe + Bar: A cavernously cool space–reminiscent of Mountain Dandy–with a great menu to boot. Nothing beats the Ploughman’s Lunch—cheddar cheese, cured meats, house pickles, fresh fruit, mixed greens and a baguette—washed down with a glass of rose.
Hot Cakes Cakery: Our saucy friends at Hot Cakes (we carry their rye whiskey caramel) make molten cakes to order with housemade toppings (hot fudge, caramel, ice creams). A yummy escape on a rainy day.
Victrola Coffee Roasters: After (or before) shopping, refuel at this Capitol Hill café, the newest outpost of the famed roaster.
The Starbucks Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room: No matter your stance on Starbucks, the Roastery is a stunning shrine to coffee with its hardwood detailing, copper cauldrons and oil-lamp lighting. A sight to beyond. Also interesting is the original(ish) Starbucks at Pike Place Market, only nine blocks away.