Of all the cities in the world, Seattle is known as having some of the best java in the world. While there are plenty of chain coffee joints, the craft coffee spots, local roasters, and mom-and-pop cafés are outstanding and perhaps more worthy of your dollar if you’re looking for Seattle’s best coffee. Whether you’re a traveler from out of town or a local looking for a new spot, this city won’t leave you disappointed. So to help you decide where to caffeinate next, we’ve created this guide of the 9 best coffee shops in Seattle, Washington.
Located in Beacon Hill, this beloved neighborhood java joint serves up delicious craft coffee and a true sense of community. It’s got an industrial feel with cement floors and exposed ductwork, but there’s nothing “cold” about this place. The Station team is heavily invested in local – the people, arts community, government and politics, and more. You’ll frequently find events going on inside, from art exhibits to live music! They actually serve more than great coffee, with boozy drinks like mimosas, sangria, and wine, making this spot a great choice if you’re looking for a bit of variety.
Located in Seattle’s Downtown, knickknacks and a mishmash of furniture fill this eclectic café, along with the welcoming scent of fresh coffee. In addition to their classic “Stiff Black Coffee” blend, Bedlam has a crazy mocha menu, with items such as the Nutella Mocha and Monkey Spice Mocha, which has dark chocolate and notes of orange, cinnamon, and florals. If you’re looking for something sweet, pair your coffee with a slice of local pie for breakfast (we won’t judge!). You won’t be disappointed by this quirky coffee joint in Seattle!
Preserve and Gather
Located in Greenwood, this local spot is perhaps best known for its (oh so smooth) cortado, which is espresso mixed with a roughly equal amount of steamed milk. Lots of natural light, a faintly DIY feel, and grey-blue walls with gold stenciled details set a bright and inviting tone. In addition to great coffee, there’s a decent sized menu of graze-worthy eats, like fresh pastries and meat + cheese + pickle plates. Everything (and we mean everything) is house made, so you can expect to thoroughly enjoy whatever you order. This java joint purposely doesn’t have Wi-Fi (to encourage socializing), making it a great place to visit with friends, but not an ideal choice if you’re hoping to get some work done.
Allegro is one of the original coffee shops that opened in 1975 when Seattle residents started becoming interested in knowing where their coffee came from. With tons of framed currencies covering the wall, this hidden gem is located in an alley in the University District, making it often overlooked or unknown to those who don’t frequent the neighborhood. Beans are imported from family farms around the world and roasted in-house in small batches on the second floor of the cafe (where you can enjoy your drink!). In fact, the founder of Cafe Allegro, Dave Olsen, developed Starbucks’ espresso roast in the 1970s and later became Starbucks head buyer and roaster after selling the cafe to a longtime employee. The reviews are in – if you’re looking for some of the best coffee in Seattle, plan a stop-in at Allegro!
Victrola Coffee Roasters
With four Seattle locations – two in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, one in Beacon Hill, and one Downtown – you can grab a coffee from Victrola no matter where you are in the city! Named for the popular phonograph of the 1920s, that era marks “much of what [they] do, from [their] passion for live vintage jazz to the cafe’s unique architectural charm”. You’re guaranteed a delicious, rich, cup of craft coffee, as evidence of their 20 years in business so far. As a bonus, on select Fridays (at the Pike Street store location in Capitol Hill) at 11:00 AM, they offer a free, first-come-first-served cupping class during which customers can taste and learn about coffee.
Ghost Note Coffee
Located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, Ghost Note is known for its unique coffee-based drinks with house made ingredients. While it may not be what a “purist” is looking for, every drink starts with expertly roasted single origin beans before it’s crafted into a signature drink. Mainstays like “Lush Life” (espresso, almond milk, orange blossom honey, grapefruit aromatics) and seasonal drinks such as the “Mocha Shake” (rich vegan drinking chocolate, oat milk and coconut cream, espresso) are the perfect way to add a bit of excitement to your day!
Located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, Analog Coffee is a hipster coffee shop that serves a rotating cast of beans from local roasters, alongside local Fresh Breeze dairy. Your best bet is to grab a pour over of ever changing freshly ground Herkimer beans (what they’re best known for!) or another classic, like an americano or cappuccino. They’ve always for something from their private collection spinning on the record player, which only further contributes to the relaxing, quaint atmosphere.
If you’re looking for some of the best Nitro on tap, head to Anchorhead to get your fix. Nitro is cold brew infused with nitrogen that results in a creamy, lightly carbonated drink – perfect for a hot summer day. Plus, you can get flavored cold brew, like their Honey Bunches of Cold Brew and Nitro Mint Latte. But even if you prefer your coffee piping hot, you’ll love their fair trade, organic, non-GMO beans. Anchorhead often has drool-worthy seasonal house made flavorings, such pumpkin spice and vanilla bean. Stop by for a seriously tasty jolt of energy!
Seattle Coffee Works
Located on Pike Street in the Capitol Hill area, Seattle Coffee Works has a homey and down-to-earth vibe. The coffee is always good and beans are sourced from all over the world, often with options available from most coffee-growing countries. In fact, it’s the #3 coffee shop in all of Seattle, according to Tripadvisor! But perhaps the coolest thing about this coffee shop is the differentiation between the express bar, for those who just need to grab their caffeine fix and run, and the slow bar, for those who want to attend a school of sorts. At the slow bar, visitors can taste, smell, and learn as their coffee is prepared. Here, you’ll see the barista with a variety of single origin beans and manual brewing equipment. At Seattle Coffee Works, coffee is an art, and they’re dedicated to furthering the craft with an obsession that’s nerdy, but not uptight or exclusive. As they share on their website, it’s “part ritual, part playground and part science lab.”