Seattle, home of Starbucks and Seattle’s Best Coffee, knows its java. But Seattleites do so much more with coffee than just pull shots for lattes and macchiatos. Cafés, bars and ice cream shops around the city are getting creative with coffee and whipping up tasty concoctions that will satisfy your cravings this summer.
Coffee and ice cream is a classic pairing, and several local ice cream shops craft their ice cream with locally-roasted beans. The local chain Molly Moon’s features Stumptown Coffee ice cream as a fixture among other rotating offerings. Cupcake Royale weaves in ribbons of chocolate with ice cream made from Stumptown’s Hair Bender blend. Go even bigger at Cupcake Royale with their Hot Salty Mess, an ice cream sundae with burnt caramel and smoked sea salt ice cream, espresso and homemade hot fudge topped with whipped cream.
“Affogato” means “drowned” in Italian. And this delicious dish comprises a scoop of ice cream or gelato (traditionally, vanilla) dunked in a shot or two of espresso. Try one out at Bluebird Microcreamery or Cupcake Royale, two local chains serving this treat. Be creative with your ice cream selection at either and choose flavors such as horchata or peanut butter at Bluebird, or Washington hazelnut brittle with salted ganache at Cupcake Royale.
It’s no surprise that you’ll find liquor and coffee paired perfectly in some of Seattle’s bars thanks to the thriving nightlife scene. Try The Beccacino, which is crafted at Canon and widely considered the first high-quality coffee cocktail. The 30-year-old recipe blends brandy, Benedictine, amaretto, Irish Mist and cold brew coffee, topped with whipped cream. Sun Liquor features its own boozy coffee cocktail, the Café Amaro, which mixes the Italian digestif Fernet Branca with coffee and hand-whipped Angostura cream.
Seattle’s rare summer heat sometimes calls for a cold coffee, straightforward and uncomplicated. Stumptown has one of the best — the Cold Brew uses high-quality beans steeped in room-temperature water for more than 12 hours and comes in bottles, kegs and growlers. Or head to Caffé Vita, known for its single-origin, farm-direct beans, for an iced coffee.
Coffee might be Seattle’s favorite beverage, but beer is a close second. The two together make for a perfect marriage of bitter, cold and refreshing. The nanobrewery Rooftop Brewing Company uses cold-pressed coffee from wholesaler Seven Roasters in the Makeda Coffee Porter. While the brewery itself just opened this summer, you can also grab a taste of the porter on tap at Makeda Coffee. And Bluebird Microcreamery recently added housemade beer to its repertoire, including a Caffé Vita Coffee Porter that, if you’re brave enough, you can plunk a scoop of ice cream into for a bittersweet beer float.
Photos Courtesy of Cupcake Royale, Cafe Amaro and Stumptown Cold Brew