I went to Seattle a few weeks ago for the Create and Cultivate conference. It was an aaaaall day event on Saturday, so I booked an early flight on Friday morning (ooh, that 4 am wake up call was rough!) and took a red eye flight home on Sunday night so I could enjoy two full days of exploring on either side of the conference.
I adore this city. I’ve been quite a few times to visit family, and each time I find something new to explore. There are so many fun neighborhoods and pockets in Seattle…it was hard to narrow down my list! I stayed with my aunt (thanks for hosting me, Jeanne!), and we had so much fun together on this little whirlwind weekend!
Most of these are quick iPhone snaps…I wish I had better pictures for you! Just rest assured that despite my poor pictures, Seattle is one of the most photo-worthy cities I’ve visited. The food, the trees, the water, and the people are beautifully lit by the cloudy skies. I love it. Next time I’ll try to remember my camera battery when I go out! #Oops.
48 Hours In Seattle
Coffee first…always, always, always. We stopped at Tin Umbrella for a macchiato and a slice of banana bread. Is there anything better than a cozy coffee date while it’s overcast outside? It’s my happy place for sure.
What’s next after coffee? BEER! Haha…this was not originally planned, but I wanted to visit a couple breweries during the weekend, and we drove close to Georgetown Brewing Co. and decided to stop by!
This place isn’t a tap room…it’s a growler room and bottle shop. So you can go in for (free) tastings, but you can’t buy a pint of beer to drink there. They do, however, guide you through a tasting of 12 beers, so we sipped a bunch of them. Nate would’ve loved this place, so I’m putting it on my list of places to show him whenever he can come up to Seattle with me!
Next, we headed to Pioneer Square to bop around for a bit. I decided not to do Pike Place Market this time…I’ve been there a few times already! I mean, it’s always fun and different and busy, but there are so many other corners of Seattle that I still need to see.
Pioneer Square is called “Seattle’s original neighborhood.” It’s trendy and bustling, but the streets are mostly lined late-1800s Romanesque Revival buildings, so it looks noble and dignified. There are a ton of great bars, coffee shops, art galleries, shops, and restaurants in just a few blocks! There’s even a park with a 22-foot waterfall right in the middle of Pioneer Square.
The Seattle Design fest was going on that weekend, so we hung out and played at all the exhibits. It reminded me of being a kid and going to The Science Place in Dallas…except this was all outside!
This balloon exhibit was my favorite: the instructions were to “write something that makes you happy or gives you hope” on a balloon, then tie it to the net. By the end of the day, the balloons had collectively lifted the net in the air! Powerful.
Here’s what I wrote:
Y’all, I can’t help it! I’m totally #smittenkitten.
If you want to see the prettiest little restaurant in Seattle, stop by The London Plane. I can’t help but start smiling when I think of this place, full of fresh flowers, homemade pastries, big windows, and the gentle hum of people breakfast-ing together. It was lovely!
I was heading to lunch somewhere else, so I didn’t eat a meal here…but I bought a pastry on my way out the door. (You know…for sustenance while I’m walking.)
We lunched at Salumi, which is Mario Batali’s dad’s restaurant. The lines can be crazy, but we went right before it closed at 2 pm. The good: no lines! The bad: certain menu items had sold out. So instead of sandwiches, we got a big plate of about 10 different types of salami and chowed down.
My favorite was the Mole Salami. I could taste the chocolate and cinnamon in it, and it made me feel ready for cool fall days!
Oh, and Mario Batali’s dad was in the shop while we were there! He’s a sweet old man who obviously takes a lot of pride in his shop.
I had a Create & Cultivate happy hour to attend on Friday evening in Capitol Hill, so we headed over there to explore for a few hours. Despite the worst martini experience of my life (not gonna share which bar it was, but it was awful! The bar tender didn’t even know what was in a martini….so that was rough), I loved Capitol Hill.
When I hear Seattle residents talking about the Capitol Hill neighborhood, it reminds me of how Austinites talk about Rainey Street: it used to be hipster, fun, and a little eccentric. Now it’s still cool, but over-crowded and commercialized. Do you agree?
We walked all the way up and down Broadway, stopping for coffee at Stumptown, drinking the worst martini ever (haha…it’s always going to be funny to me!), and stopping in some cute shops. I love the Cal Anderson Park Reflecting Pool at the south end of Capitol Hill. Public parks are my jam.
The other neighborhood I wanted to visit was Fremont, which is another place that has started getting really crowded! It’s adorable, though, and we lucked out with perfect weather on Sunday. My aunt and I strolled down the streets, went to breweries, walked through the farmers market, and ate lunch.
Fremont Brewing is another brewery that wasn’t on our agenda, but we walked past and said, “wanna get a flight?” So we did.
We also stopped at Theo Chocolate. I had no idea the factory was in Seattle! I buy this chocolate all the time when I grocery shop in Austin at Central Market.
I should have taken a picture, because it’s awesome: you walk in the chocolate factory, and to the right is a big wall of chocolate samples. I’m pretty sure I sampled every single one…twice. (Ugh I’m 5-years-old sometimes.)
Lunch was per this Austin blogger’s recommendation: Pacific Inn Pub. (But Emily told me that everyone calls it “Pac Inn.”) It has the best fish ‘n chips!
Pac Inn is exactly what I like in a hole-in-the-wall bar. It’s a little dingy with low ceilings, old carpet, and a really feisty waiter (who made sure to tell everyone that she wasn’t supposed to be working that day..). The Seahawks game was playing on two small tvs, so the bar was packed with fans.
The flaky fish was hot and greasy, and the chips were perfectly crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. I couldn’t have asked for more.
Hi, Fremont troll!
With just a few hours left in the day, we headed over to Ballard. I remembered how much I loved Reuben’s Brews from my last visit to Seattle, so we went there again for a couple half pints of beer.
Afterward, we had just enough time to check out one more foodie stop: The Walrus and the Carpenter. It’s a small, bustling oyster bar with an open kitchen and a long counter. We were lucky to find two seats at the counter right away, and I indulged in a lovely vignes blanches and a half dozen of the freshest raw oysters I’ve ever eaten.
A quick stop at Hot Cakes for a molten chocolate cake (so good….so sinful…) before heading to the airport and sleeping sleeping sleeping on that flight home! Nothing wears me out quite as much as walking around a city and filling my belly with delicious food!
Have a great weekend, friends! I’m hopping on a plane to Chicago today for a quick weekend getaway with mah boo. Talk to you on Monday!