Posts Tagged ‘U District’


Cafe Allegro

April 10, 2010

In an alley just off of the UW campus sits a hidden gem: Cafe Allegro. There is a sign out on the sidewalk directing people down an alley to where the cafe is located.
The outside of the cafe is just amazing. Vines cover the top of the building just above the windows and sweep down to the Cafe Allegro sign. The sign it self is beautiful in its simplicity. A woody, homemade look with no glitz or glamour. That in itself is the best way to describe Cafe Allegro;it has a very down to Earth feel with a wonderful, creative vibe. Along the exterior of the building is a bench where patrons sit drinking their coffee.

Inside is invigorating. Most cafes have the same typical art. TruthfullyI’m getting tired of seeing peoples “artistic” photos of their vacation or “tragic” photos that leave me feeling as if I was trying to be manipulated. If you have seem one you have seen them all, but what was on exhibit here was different. Unique, colorful, and full of life.
One of the first things that I noticed was the pastry case. This is the type of selection that I long for at any cafe. It was full of donuts, turnovers, muffins, almond croissants, and cookies as far as the eye could see. Way to many things to choose from, but that’s how I like it best. The menu offered a refreshing array of drinks. Besides the usual coffee offerings there was apple cider, fresh lemonade, orange juice, pink grapefruit juice, Italian soda, and Thamas Kemper Soda (root beer, cream, blackberry, and orange cream).
After placing my order I sat down and noticed that there were cards with various

bird identification covering the register. The wall behind the register was covered in foreign currency. A simple idea, but I loved it and it fit well with the rest of the cafe. The table itself had a piece of woven fabric under a glass top with a sign that encouraged patrons to please share the tables.
R brought over our order and I dove into a delicious looking raspberry donut. Oh my, was it amazing: moist, full of flavor, but most importantly it had the right amount of raspberry so that the flavor didn’t over power. I could really go off my diet and not really care if I had more of these in my life.

The carmel latte I had was good. The shot of carmel was too sweet, but the latte was hot. Getting a hot latte is a rare commodity lately so I’m more than willing to look past the flavor of the carmel if I’m served something warmer than an ice cube.
As I sipped my latte I watched the Baristas in action. They were nice, friendly, and seemed to know many of the patrons that came in. In between my Barista watching I drifted in and out of conversations at other tables. Some were discussing the influences of Jazz, the literary contributions of certain authors, and another was going on the most fantastic flow of conscious about Shakespeare right up to current events. However the most interesting was from a man reminiscing

about being in New York when John Lennon was shot. Not the usual coffee shop talk that I’m use to hearing. It was refreshing.
The bathroom is some thing that needs to be discussed for many reasons. First, it’s tiny. Meaning it’s thin. Really it is as wide as a person. Second, it is a bit grimy. Not that it looks like it hasn’t been cleaned in a while, but it isn’t my idea of a wonderful place to be. Finally it is a sight to see. The brick walls are covered in very artistic graffiti. It was so interesting that I forgot where I was.
Cafe Allegro is an amazing place that anyone in Seattle needs to try. No excuses. Go. Experience. Enjoy. Thank me later.

Cafe Allegro Expresso Bar on Urbanspoon


Trabant Coffee and Chai

March 6, 2010

Trabant Coffee and Chai is a breath of fresh air. Truly I have been getting tired of the whole stereotypical coffee house with the wood floors and crap art on the wall. Yes, there is art here, but the the blue walls and the mural of what I interpreted as an astronauts face added a funky twist. Add to that a loft area with additional seating, Candyland sitting on a shelf under the stairs, and skull lights hanging in the window and I knew that I was in for something a bit different.

One of the first things that I noticed was a sign above the counter proclaiming their dedication to coffee, how they pay twice above fair trade value for their beans, and the intense process of training their baristas go through before serving.

Their pastry offerings is less than impressive. It was limited to some croissants, a cookie or two, and vegan muffins. I went with the heart cookie and wasn’t impressed. Way to sweet for my liking. As for the drinks R ordered a cup of Ethiopian coffee while I went for the raspberry chai.

The coffee is brewed in a Clovker, which is used to brew high-quality coffee with a method similar to a French press. Stealing a sip of his coffee I was blown away by the flavors and the smoothness of it. This wasn’t a strong, hard, get me up in the morning brew. It was like a fine wine; something to be savored and enjoyed.

My chai was delicious. My fear about ordering the was the shot of flavor added it, but my fears were soon gone. There was a distinct chai taste with a hint of raspberry. My only complaint was that it was a bit sweet for my taste, but outstanding none the less.

This is a place I will most defiantly see again, since I am extremely curious about there other roasts.

Trabant Coffee & Chai - U District on Urbanspoon


Cafe Solstice

January 16, 2010

So, um, where is it? We parked, paid for a ticket, and were off with car seat in hand. “R, where is this place?”

“It’s here.” As he pulls out Android phone.

“Where? I found Starbucks….”

With a grin on his face he tells me to follow him (famous last words anyone?). A few minutes later we were standing in front of Cafe Solstice. We were on the the wrong street before. Outside was a nice sized patio that I would have loved to have tired out since the street was pretty quiet with few passerby, but with a little baby it wasn’t in the cards.

Inside I was taken by the pastries. Oh, so many to choose from, but what to pick. I settled on a lemon scone and a carmel latte; grabbed the baby and took a seat. One thing that threw us off was that there was no menu and the barista really didn’t seem interested in helping much.

The tables were large and made of thick wood. I sort of felt like I was at a bar in ‘Ye Olden Days’ and should have been yelling for the wench to bring me my grog. It was R’s kind of furniture. The place (aside from the lumberjack decor tables) was defiantly trendy, hipster, Seattle Cafe set in the U District. Students were everywhere with papers

spread all over the place. However there seemed to be a bit of a diverse mix of people there. In one corner sat a women with a pile of books, Banker To The Poor included (a women after my own heart). In another corner two girls worked on something while speaking over their laptops and in the middle of the place sat four police officers.

There is free internet. If you have a Husky card than you can access internet that way or just ask someone the password and log onto the cafe’s account.

The music was a bit loud. From my understanding what is going to be

played is dictated by the barista that is behind the counter and the level of sound as well. It wasn’t overly distracting, but louder than I preferred.

On to the important stuff: the coffee. The latte was nice, not great, but I was happy for it none the less. The scone on the other hand was well, blah. The taste was nice, but all but the middle few bites was dry. It was almost to heavy to eat. However the taste of it was very good.

Overall I really did enjoy Solstice and if I was a UW student I could see myself there quiet a bit.

Cafe Solstice on Urbanspoon