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Travelers are always asking us where they can find the best bars in Seattle so we compiled a list of our very favorite drinking holes.
If you want the most bang for your buck, you'll head to 2nd Avenue in Belltown.
There, you'll find probably the last two blocks of cool, older Seattle bars all lined up in a row. Literally within stumbling distance of each other! Which is lucky because - well - you'll see.
Rendezvous: I used to go here before it got remodeled into a classy lady. It's 100% less scary now. Plus, they have two theaters and host bands, comedy & theater shows, films & burlesque. Check their calendar.
Shorty's: Pinball and vintage arcade games. I'm all about Centipede - but I'm kinda old. Also, HOT DOGS!
Lava Lounge: Tiki bar with shuffleboard.
Rabbit Hole: Check out the mural. It was painted by my friend and our studio-mate Crystal Barbre. She's pretty much the best - when she's not being just the worst. Plus, indoor skee ball. Is there another kind of skee ball? Dunno. Just try not to think about it too much, okay? Calm down.
Mr. Darcys: It's dark. It's intimate. There's talk of books. And now that we've moved out, we can tell you that our studio used to be through the back hallway. Weird things happen in that back hallway. Guarantee.
Rocco's: If you like your drinks with a side of pizza, think Rocco's. You can also just grab a slice to go if you get snack-ey before heading home.
Now, walk a block or two in another direction and you end up at:
Jupiter Bar: A great space that hosted a weekly drawing night called Drawnk - you know - before the worldwide viral pandemic took over. Any bar that supports artists is a good one in my book.
Sonya's: Just a really nice, chill bar that doesn't have the bonkers energy of some of the Belltown spots. Doug and I used to live right above it and spent many a night there.
If you want to finish off your visit to Pike Place Market with a nice drink, try these fine establishments:
Jarr Bar: Our neighbor on Western Avenue - on the back side of the Market. It's just as hard to find as our store - but if you find the sidewalk chalk unicorns that lead you from the gum wall right to our door - you'll also find Jarr Bar.
Zig Zag Cafe: 100% guarantee you won't find it without asking someone for directions.
Alibi Room: In the same alley as the Gum Wall - across from the theater entrance is a door. Open it. That's the Alibi Room. They have excellent pizza and calzones too.
Are you like us and wanna play complicated strategic board games while you get a little tipsy? These two bars ENCOURAGE game playing.
Mox Boarding House: Plus, they have a huge board game store attached called Card Kingdom. You can borrow a game to play for the night before you decide if you want to invest your dollars in your own set.
Teku Tavern: Huge tables and tons of beer on tap. Bring your game and your friends and camp out. They also have huge coolers of bottles so you can also pick up some things to go.
You can't really visit Seattle without checking out Capitol Hill. It's where I lived when I first moved to Seattle way back in 1999. Email had only been around for a few years. Imagine that.
Unicorn & Narwhal: I mean. They are carnival themed. Plus, Unicorn BALLS and Narwhal BALLS are both on the menu. You don't want to miss this place. It's 100% worth the experience & they have fun stuff happening in the Narwhal downstairs. Go.
HoneyHole: Sandwiches. So many sandwiches. Eat one.
Would you rather drink coffee?
Personally, I'm (Rosalie) obsesssed with coffee. Yes, there's an extra S there. That's how much I like it. My love of coffee is what inspired the Shower Art piece that says, "Coffee makes my pussy tingle." Is it autobiographical? I'll never tell. Oh wait, I just did.
I like really, really, really strong black coffee. Light roast is not for me. There are about one million coffee shops in Seattle. The ones on this list are my very favorite and I have no way to rank them. I love them all the same.
Espresso Vivache: I just freaking love this place.
Victrola Cafe: I just freaking love this place.
Little Oddfellows: I just freaking love this place.
Caffe Vita: I just freaking love this place.
Uptown Espresso: I just freaking love this place.
Chocolati Cafe: I just freaking love this place.
Ada's Technical Books and Cafe: I just freaking love this place.
Starbucks Reserve Roastery: Yes, I like Starbucks. Shoot me. Look, they're nothing if not consistent. Am I sending you to the original Starbucks? No. It's just like all the other Starbucks. It's fine - but like nothing super amazing. This place IS super amazing. It's like a coffee mansion. No, maybe a coffee palace? It's big and it's filled with coffee. You'll see.
Need a fix while you're visiting the Pike Place Market?
Ghost Alley Espresso: Delicious. Plus, if you find the unicorns drawn in chalk on the sidewalk - they'll lead you right to our door. Trust me - you'll need the help to find us. Get a coffee for the journey. You won't regret it.
The Crumpet Shop: Like your coffee just black and simple? Hands down The Crumpet Shop serves up the best black coffee in the city. I've tried to recreate it. I've bought the same beans even. Doesn't come close. I don't know what they're doing in there - but I like it!
Okay. I guess I went a little more in depth on this adventure than I had planned. Try them all! Then, maybe go drink a glass of water or two. I don't have any recommendations for where to get that. You're on your own.
by Rosalie Gale
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