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Random Seattle Coffee Roundup

I go to Seattle maybe once or twice a year for work. My company is based in a Seattle suburb, so the opportunity comes up somewhat regularly. Seattle is famous for coffee, or maybe infamous for coffee. But despite the big brand name that was born out of that fair city, there are plenty of independent shops that serve some fine coffee. One thing that you see regularly is drive-thru coffee spots. We just do not have these around here. And no, Dunkin Donuts drive-thrus do not count. Mercurys was a drive-thru spot that I stopped at every morning before work. Service was friendly, quick, and the coffee was great. I did not, however, see any of those bikini drive-thru spots. 
A wonderful coffee shop in Fremont is Milstead & Co. It’s fairly roomy and stark, but that doesn’t mean it’s cold. It’s still warm and inviting. And their coffee is amazing. 
Their pastries too. It was a cold and drizzly day when we visited, and it felt like the most perfect place to be at that time.
We also stopped by Citizen for the most beautiful latte art I’ve ever received. Behold the swan! 
This spot is in an adorable house type of building. They have a bunch of food too, including crepes! This simple buckwheat crepe was perfect.

Caffe Zingaro is another quiet spot we visited one morning before we left Seattle. This drink here is the shop’s namesake, . sdfa
Caffe Ladro runs a number of shops in the Seattle area, and I stopped at a couple. They not only have good coffee, but I had an amazing hot chocolate. We we stopped at one downtown, the proprietor took a very long time to make it, and it was worth every bit of the wait. It was full of hot chocolate love. And for cold and dreary Seattle days, it was even better than a coffee. 
One last stop worth mentioning on this random post is Caffe Fiore. They are an organic coffee house with several locations. I remember this particular shop in Fremont being very very busy. So you see, just like every other big city in the US, there are plenty of local independent coffee shop options, even in Seattle. 

Manakeesh

Manakeesh Cafe is a University City joint that bills itself as lebanese fusion. I don’t care what it is, I just know that it’s awesome and cheap. On 45th and Walnut, it occupies a beautiful building with ridiculously high ceilings, and a little bit of outdoor dining space. There’s flatbreads, appetizers, coffees, and lots of desserts. And it’s now one of my favorite places in Philly. The hummus is served with piping warm pita. There’s a whole lot of it!
This is one of the manakeesh, where their name comes from. It’s a lebanese flatbread, baked in an open flame oven, and topped with whatever suits your fancy. This particular one was the lahm bajeen, a mix of ground lamb, tomato, and spices. While the coloring was a little disturbing and raw looking, it was indeed cooked, and indeed super tasty. It doesn’t even taste super lamb-y, as I don’t typically care for lamb. But I thought this was excellent. Lamb on pizza – do try it!
We also got the honey manakeesh. I suppose this is more of a dessert one, as it had sweet cream and was drizzled with raw honey. This was rolled up and warm, and damn, it really hit the sweet spot. It would be a perfect replacement for a bagel and cream cheese in the mornings.
At Manakeesh Cafe, they have an impressive display of middle eastern sweets. Not sure what to get, I asked the guy at the register to pick out a couple of baklava for us. I told him that I trusted him. So we ended up with two pieces of this flaky, super sweet, honey-laden treat. His picks were perfect. 
We also got an adorable Turkish Coffee and one of their many fancy coffee drinks. This was the Caffe Beirut, a latte with caramel and hazelnut. It was as good as I thought it would be. It’s a nice casual spot where you put in your order and you get a number. Then they bring your food out to you. If this was in center city, I’d be there all the time! 
Manakeesh Cafe Bakery on Urbanspoon

Cake and the Beanstalk

Before heading over to Reading Terminal Market to get some hot donuts, we stopped at Cake and the Beanstalk for a few coffees and bites. It’s an adorable, colorful, and whimsical bakery and cafe on Locust. The owner was a pastry chef at several leading restaurants in Philadelphia before opening up his own place. There’s all kinds of baked goods that change daily. They also have coffee and tea happy hours.
We got a slice of the strawberry pound cake. Ooh… this thing was unbelievably dense and moist, sweet and delicious. I could have eaten the whole damn cake!
Here’s what I would say is the best darn iced latte in the entire city. I’m not sure what kind of magical milk they use, but this is the creamiest and dreamiest, yet strong latte I’ve had all summer. I challenge you to find a better one! And two people can’t be wrong, right?
Although it’s a small space, there’s plenty of seating in this extremely colorful Dr. Seuss inspired room. There’s also a teeny little outdoor area. Or you could chill in the big window seat by the bakery counter! I can’t wait to try more of their sweets!
Cake and the Beanstalk on Urbanspoon

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