Monorail Espresso
Address : 520 Pike Street, Seattle, WA
Phone : (206) 625 0449

ABOUT Monorail Espresso

Monorail Espresso Hours of Operation

Monday to Friday 6 AM to 6PM

Saturday to Sunday 9 AM to 5PM

YAH Says...

Monorail Espresso

Anyone that reads our dining reviews here on our alternative travel guide knows that we pay a lot of attention to coffee shops. They collect travelers from all across the world and in cities like Seattle one step into a coffee shop catapults patrons into an international gathering place. So when we review a cafe we always factor in the vibe (decor, staff, customer base, seating, etc...) of the establishment as one of the primary benchmarks for receiving a recommendation. Thus, when we came upon Monorail Espresso, we were at a crossroads.

There is no bookshelf at Monorail Espresso, no plush seating to toil away on laptops and tablets, no mingling between scruffy travelers, and no cozy dim lighting - unless the sun is passing into the horizon of Puget Sound. Monorail Espresso is an outdoor sidewalk espresso bar built into the concrete wall of Pike Street between 5th and 6th Avenue. Because of this we struggled to name it the Best Coffee Shop in Downtown Seattle. But after three visits we had no other option but to do so.

We first had to come to terms with our penalizing an espresso establishment for not having four walls and a ceiling to be deemed worthy for a Best Coffee Shop list. The two sidewalk tables fronting the cubby hole where Pike Street people-watching entertains those lucky enough to nab a seat helped skirt that apprehension. Second we had to commend the one person staffed counter for keeping up with the line (another good indicator) that forms at Monorail Espresso. The old-country (Italian?) owner is a more than pleasant gentleman who is more than happy to make recommendations or entertain conversation during slower hours.

OK, so with "vibe" and "service" receiving check marks for excellence the next logical benchmark comes down to the coffee. When it comes to judging on lattes and mochas (our performance indicators) Monorail Espresso simply dominates downtown Seattle. If you're up for trying something new, it's highly recommended to mind the sandwich board that fronts Monorail Espresso and order the specialty beverage that's scribbled in chalk as the day's feature. You can't go wrong. If you happen upon this coffee "street bar" on a day where the Coconut Hazelnut Latte is on deck you can thank the espresso gods for blessing you on said day. Otherwise, feel free to request a combination of flavored syrups to create your favorite iced or hot beverage. Monorail Espresso also brings in a sweet selection of pastry for those craving a nibble and their own homemade chocolate chip cookie mounds are perfect for coffee cup dipping or devouring as is.

The Best Coffee Shop in Downtown Seattle isn't really a coffee shop, and that's fine by us.

Monorail Espresso Seattle

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