You’re meeting a friend or colleague for coffee… but where? We’ve created the map above so you can find the most convenient option. As a student who’s had classes throughout campus, I thought I knew where all of the coffee shops were. But I was surprised to find new cafés I had never even heard of while writing this article. I’ve highlighted some of the most noteworthy coffee shops that are also great for hosting meetings. (For a more thorough look at coffee on campus, check out this list from UW Housing and Food Services.)
- Husky Grind (Mercer Court) – If you’re looking for the best coffee on campus, you’ve got to try the new Husky Grind location. It’s a healthy walk from main campus, but those of you near the southwest corner of campus are only short distance away. While Husky Grind is also located in the District Market, the Mercer Court location stands out because it has its own coffee bean roasters in an adjacent building. Ultimate freshness and flavor. Walking into the shop I noticed its quietness and emptiness, making it an ideal location for meetings. Aside from the coffee, I’ve been told they serve delicious oatmeal and cream puffs and use local and recycled timber in their furnishings. Outdoor seating is offered during the warmer months.
- Molly’s (Henry Art Gallery) – Molly’s is also amongst the best for coffee. It sits on the bottom floor of the Henry Art Gallery, just on the outskirts of Red Square, and is technically not part of UW (and thus not listed on the HFS compilation). Serving Stumptown coffee, Molly’s delivers its drinks with beautiful foam art. Reviewers on Yelp! rave about their sandwiches, soups, and salad and note the wide array of organic, local, and fresh ingredients. Molly’s also has a large outdoor seating area for the warmer months where you can take a sneak peek into one of its art displays.
- Burke Café (Burke Museum) – The Burke Café has received high Yelp! ratings. Most reviewers described it as warm, cozy, and quiet, and I couldn’t agree more. The Burke Café is adorned with 18th century French pine paneling that takes you away from the busy and ever-changing campus. Burke’s atmosphere makes for a great place to sit and talk. They not only offer coffee, but also pastries, bottled drinks, and small microwaveable foods.
- Suzzallo Espresso (Suzzallo Library) – In the heart of campus lies Suzzallo Espresso. Integrated within Suzzallo Library, students are perpetually studying at the tables and going in and out for their needed caffeine. It does get quite loud here, but its location is superb for meetings with colleagues from all over campus. The café also has a “mini-mart” where you can find bottled beverages, microwaveable foods, snacks, pastries, and much more.
- Orin’s Place (Paccar Hall) – Serving Starbuck’s coffee (which may be either a pro or a con depending on your coffee preferences), Orin’s place is very spacious and it’s easy to find seats both in the designated café and in the open floor plan of Paccar Hall. Just to the side of Orin’s is a fireplace which is often burning – a nice touch. Orin’s does get very busy and loud in between classes, so it would be most suitable for small and causal gatherings. Aside from coffee, Orin’s serves delicious pasta that some say is the best on campus.
- Parnassus Café & Art Gallery (Art Building) – Tucked away in the Art Building’s basement, Parnassus Café has ample seating and showcases student artwork on its walls. It’s known to be a “hip” café where UW alum Ryan Lewis used to study and where current art students and professors gather. Radio music is always played and it can get loud as a result. However, the baristas are very friendly and won’t hesitate to turn things down if it’s too loud for you. On a side note, I’ve been told their Americanos are worth ordering.
Be sure to bookmark this article for when you need a meeting spot or just want to try someplace new. Do you have a favorite coffee shop on or near campus? Please share below!
Photos and graphics by Tae McCash.