Monorail Espresso is descended from Seattle’s first espresso stand, opened just down the block in 1980. It is a walk-up window with no indoor seating, but a few sidewalk bench seats are available.
I haven’t drunk nearly enough Seattle coffee to begin to speculate as to which place in the city serves the best, but it is hard to imagine finding a cup as perfectly satisfying as the double shot espresso at Monorail Espresso. Velvet smooth, ink-dark, and as eye-opening as a goose attack, this little cup of Joe is surely a benchmark of perfection. Lattes are peerless, made in such flavors as toasted coconut, caramel mocha, lavender, and burnt crème. To eat with one’s coffee, there are locally-baked scones, coffee cake, banana bread, and chubbies (little cookies good for dunking).