Capitol Hill Specialty
Ada’s Technical Books & Café
425 15th Ave. E., Capitol Hill
Ada's has been a popular home for nomadic office workers since they first opened their awesomely geeky concept store in 2013. Though the coffee and food are enough to draw the laptop-wielding crowd, the airy, open space and ample community events around their bookstore (which features math, architecture, and engineering books) are also powerful motivators. Last year, they made it official when they opened their formal co-working space, The Office, in the space above the café. Monthly and daily rentals are available for short-term needs, but there's still free WiFi downstairs if you just want to pop in for a few hours.
522 19th Ave. E., Capitol Hill
Arguably one of the best partnerships in Seattle is the one between ice cream shop Molly Moon's and cookie bakery, Hello Robin. The result being a no-brainer: some of the very best ice cream cookie sandwiches around. You can also get cookies sans ice cream at Hello Robin, as well as pints of Molly Moon's. Plus there's the seasonal Molly Moon's walk-up window, where you can get scoops from May to September.
1517 12th Ave., Capitol Hill
Less than a year after launching their cold-pressed juices, the first Juicebox retail space/café was opened in the fall of 2013 in Capitol Hill. The organic juices here are amazing, as are the salads. You can pop in to get food on the go, but the pretty café is the kind of place you want to hang with a girlfriend for brunch: The sunlit space is threaded with ivy plants and flowers, a collage of framed nature photographs decorates a wall above a perched bar counter, and on another wall, rustic white bookcases hold vintage bowls and plates.
1532 Minor Ave., Capitol Hill
Pike Place Market gets most of the attention in Seattle, but since its opening in 2010, Melrose Market has gained a reputation as a locals' spot for specialty food items. Chef Matt Dillon helped transform the market by moving in two of his popular restaurants: dinner spot Sitka & Spruce as well as his wine bar and shop, Bar Ferd'nand. Take the time to stroll through and enjoy all the cool little stalls, like the cheese at Calf & Kid and the flowers at Marigold and Mint.
917 E. Pine St., Capitol Hill
If you ask someone who lives in Seattle where to go for ice cream, Molly Moon's is likely to be one of the first places on their must-try list. Mainstay flavors here include vanilla bean, earl grey, honey lavender, melted chocolate, balsamic strawberry, and Scout Mint (Molly Moon's buys thousands of boxes of Thin Mint cookies each year from Western Washington Girl Scouts). They have a number of do-good policies: Everything used in the shop (from spoons to milkshake cups) is entirely compostable; their Anna Banana Milk Fund sends fresh milk to families in need every week; they source locally as much as possibly. (About 90% of their ingredients come from the Pacific Northwest. They've been working with the same organic lavender farm, Purple Haze, for several years. And the approximately 16,000 pounds of chocolate that they use annually comes from organic, fair-trade Theo Chocolate, which is made in Seattle.) The original Molly Moon's is in Wallingford, which has a parklet outside with swing seats and a baby hill for play. All of the ice cream in Wallingford is made on-site—same goes for the locations in Capitol Hill, Queen…
Queen Bee Cafe
2200 E. Madison St., Capitol Hill
This sweet café specializes in English crumpets, with a menu that offers countless iterations of them (both sweet and savory). But just because you’re eating British fare doesn’t mean you can only drink tea—the baristas here do a full range of coffee drinks using Stumptown beans. Bonus: Both the Capitol Hill and Queen Anne locations are registered 501c3s—all profits are donated to a rotating group of local charities.
Top Pot Doughnuts
609 Summit Ave E., Capitol Hill
Top Pot Doughnuts is Seattle's sophisticated take on the doughnuts-and-coffee love affair, and a popular one at that—they're now more than 20 locations strong, and expanding into Texas, too. With so many outposts and free WiFi at each, it's a convenient alternative to Starbucks, with the notable addition of doughnuts that are baked fresh every day. Other locations: Queen Anne, Downtown, plus many more.
Volunteer Park Cafe
1501 17th Ave. E., Capitol Hill, Seattle
Volunteer Park Cafe (so-named because of its location in Capital Hill, just blocks from Volunteer Park) is the definition of a neighborhood joint. Long communal tables, fresh pastries every day, and best of all, chickens in the backyard (don’t worry, they’re just for eggs). There’s a counter at the front for to-go orders and coffee and pastry pickups.
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