Despite the flack Seattle attracts for its apparently perpetual gloom and rain, the weather here is maybe the most temperate in the country. We get four full seasons. At worst, the temperature hangs around freezing in the winter, and 90 degrees in the summer. We get rain, we get sun, we (all too rarely for this writer’s liking) get snow. It’s quite possible that this ‘best of all worlds’ stuff has made Seattleites all too sensitive to changes in weather. The moment winter rolls around with it’s customary 40-degree days, it’s tooooooo cold. We feel you.
We are firm believers in warming up from the inside out. You know what that means: roasty, toasty beverages! So where does one go to get their cozy on in the Emerald City? Whether you’re on the hunt for a warm tea, coffee, or boozy beverage – we’ve got you covered.
Where do you go? Create a jrrny and tell us all about it!
Remedy Tea Capitol Hill
Nestled just off of 15th Ave – by far the quietest part of the Capitol Hill neighbourhood – Remedy boasts an impressive assortment of 150 teas, a modern ambience, and a moderately sized offering of baked goods and warm soups. Hot tea is made to order, and visitors may select either a cup (16 oz) or pot. Pots are placed on a small burner to keep tea cozy during long conversations or study sessions. Bonus points: all of Remedy’s teas, tea lattes, and soups are 100% organic. They use primarily organic ingredients in their smoothies, and they have a growing number of vegan and gluten free options in their bakery case.
Cederberg Tea House Queen Anne
Cederberg, uniquely, specializes in tea lattes and snacks cooked up in the South African tradition. Their rooibos tea lattes, for example, are prepared as espresso drinks. Rooibos tea leaves are ground finely and pulled through an espresso machine, then blended with steamed milk and other accoutrements. Rooibos Americanos are prepared just the same way, less the milk and additional goodies. This place is maybe the only thing that could make us consider choosing a non-caffeinated beverage for our morning pick-me-up. (Rooibos tea naturally lacks caffeine…maniacal.) The baked goods and sandwiches at Cederberg are a compelling blend of South African customs and traditional English tea house fare.
Union Coffee Central District
Being the brainchild of Zack Reinig (husband and business partner of ice cream queen Molly Moon) doesn’t necessarily guarantee success (although…it kind of does), but the newly minted Union has definitely received a warm welcome from Seattle coffee sippers. Maybe it’s the Victrola beans? The tasty snacks? The friendly, unfussy baristas? Or maybe it’s the vibrant, modern atmosphere, courtesy of Seattle legend Linda Derschang (interior design wizard behind the painfully Instagrammable Oddfellows Cafe, Tallulah’s, etc.). Whatever it is, Union is doing alright by us.
Coffee with a conscience! The profits from their various espresso beverages, teas, Bulletproof Coffee (if that’s your thing) and snacks “support the local community by subsidizing the rent and renovations of existing housing stock for a number of affordable housing units.” Anything that improves Seattle’s residential conundrum is fine by us! In addition to their philanthropy in the housing sector, Mabel features an annex behind the cafe, called the ‘RV Park’ (as in, ‘Retail Visionary’) – a multi-functional, rentable space used for art classes, pop-up shops, meetings, and really any other collaborative effort you could think of.
Side note: while not exactly a warm treat, we think it’s important to note that Mabel carries Salt & Straw ice cream. Yum.
Bathtub Gin & Co. Belltown
One of Seattle’s best-kept secrets, you will absolutely miss this place if you’re not looking for it. The wooden door – which may as well be entirely unmarked – is tucked into a dimly lit alleyway. The whole place has an occupancy of a whopping 39 patrons, which makes us glad that it’s nearly impossible to stumble upon. If you can find your way, slink in for the Death Star. Although not exactly served hot, the bourbon, fig and maple syrup, and a soft note of lemon certainly seem to nod warmly to the holiday season. If you’re feeling a little more traditional, ask for a hot toddy. Either way, Bathtub does not disappoint.
Mezcaleria Oaxaca Capitol Hill
Arrib-rrrr! If you’re looking to be swaddled in warm, cozy delight and start a fiesta in your mouth, this is the place for you. Mexican beverages may be more likely to call to mind a beach party than a snuggly winter day, but mezcal’s smokey nature actually lends it perfectly to cold-weather drinks. Take for instance Oaxaca’s Sin Nombre: a delicious synthesis of mezcal, smoked sage, and notes of honey. Viva el infierno!
One step through the door of Rumba, and you’re in a French-Caribbean paradise. We’ve never visited the study of a classy pirate, but we imagine that this is what it would be like. Rich mahogany, aqua-coloured leather chairs, a vaguely nautical theme, and a lot of booze. A…lot. As the name and motif would suggest, Rumba’s poison of choice is rum; which is convenient, because if there was ever a more wintery libation than hot buttered rum, we’ve never heard of it.
If you’re feeling a little more adventurous, try A Rhum With a Vieux: a tantalizing blend of Rhum JM, Lustau brandy, Smith & Cross (Jamaican rum), sugar, bitters, and absinthe.
Ideally situated among downtown Seattle’s best attractions, offering breathtaking views of Lake Union, Puget Sound, and the surrounding mountains. The Westin Seattle is next door to great shopping – including Nordstrom’s flagship store, blocks from Pike Place Market, and 1 mile from the Space Needle.