A stone's throw from Cornish College’s dance buildings you will find Joe Coffee Bar, a small but charming café nestled between old historic buildings on Roy Street. Across from the allegedly haunted Harvard Exit Theatre, Joe delivers the intimacy you might love in coffee shop, all wrapped up and protected by large stone masonry.
If there are more than six or seven people in the café it might be easy to feel a little cramped. But if you are lucky to get a seat or two upstairs and enjoy the charm and character of drinking a coffee outside your standard cookie-cutter coffee shop design, you’ll be in cafe heaven.
As more old buildings in the area bow to their age and make way for sleek, modern designed structures, cafes like Joe's will be even more rare. The character that only age can bring is alive and well here. Just off the Broadway drag, Joe Bar offers a near-perfect hidden gem for meeting friends or doing work online without the hustle and bustle that you would normally see on Broadway – and yet you are oh-so-close to civilization.
Without a doubt, the coffees served at Joe Bar are made by a friendly group of baristas on Capitol Hill, especially the two grizzly men behind the bar that usually serve me my Americanos.
If you get a chance, try one of their crepes for lunch. They serve various kinds of crepes: my favorite options are Gouda-spinach and Ham and cheese crepes, and I like the one with Nutella and strawberries for desert. They also have a solid selection of tees.
Not in a coffee or crepe mood? Try one of their bottled beers or available wines. Whichever you choose, you’ll probably feel better than when you came in.
Joe Bar has a loyal following of regulars including many Cornish students who love the place, but even new-comers get the feeling they just stumbled upon something beautiful and rare when walking through their doors.
Their cash register and coffee bar sits tightly under their upstairs loft, which is accessible through a creaky wooden staircase on each side.
As for their coffee, they use Fonte’s roasted beans for their espressos. Fonte is a local roaster who has been in business for quite awhile and knows their stuff. (Stick around for their upcoming review). For their drip coffee, they use Sol Colibri beans, a fair trade coffee which I admit I haven't yet tried.
Indie Seattle Coffee Shop Serves Great Espresso
The place has an air of mellowness that may be due to a combination of its physical location, it’s cool and unpretentious baristas, it's easy-on-the-eyes color scheme, chill music and very cool/artsy patrons. It all makes for a solid 4 out of 5 stars in my book.
Location: 810 East Roy Street
Neighborhood: Capitol Hill
Parking: Street Parking
Espresso $2.40 (Double)