This is Seattle’s designer Scandinavian bakery and café. The Swedish and Norwegian immigrants contributed to much of the construction, history and culture of Seattle, which is sadly losing its roots. Expect to find a mix of traditional breads, cakes, sandwiches and cookies, with an American twist. Here you can find unique drinks like the London Fog, Toddy, Dopio, Cider and seasonal Egg Nog.
What to Try: Danish, Fruit pies/strudels.
Larsen's Bakery - Ballard (Danish)
Locally owned and operated since 1974, Paul Larsen began his baking career at 14 in Copenhagen and became an apprentice to one of the finest chefs in Copenhagen. From Denmark to Ballard, Larsen's features an in-house cafe and bakery as well as an online shop. Larsen's is an active member in the Scandinavian community and creates old-school recipes using some of the most fresh local ingredients. Holiday baked goods available for order online.
What to try: Danish pastries and bread
If you'd like something sweet to go with your coffee, head to Nielsen's, a Dutch bakery, in business since 1965. This is a place to find locals and affordable coffee and treats. Tucked away on 2nd Avenue West, it's easy to miss Nielsens unless you discover the sidewalk sign decorated with Dutch flags. Experience gluttony with the "potato," a cream-filled pastry wrapped in marzipan and dunked in Dutch cocoa powder. Most say it's like consuming heaven on earth and best washed down with a cup of Olympia Roasted coffee. I love the decor as it feels like a walk back into 1970's Europe.
What to try: potato & kringles
La Reve - Upper Queen Anne (French)
This French bakery located on the top of the "counter balance," is one of Seattle's most beloved French cafes. For a taste of Paris, be sure to try a pastry handmade the French way. A seasonal menu rotates but the classics, like the croissants, are always in season.
What to try: My favorite is the almond croissant
Owner, Patrick Morin, has over 30 years of baking experience, and while instructing a bakery course, his students encouraged him to go to America and open a French Bakery. A life long dream, Morin followed that pursuit and set up shop here in Seattle. His first bakery opened in Le Mans, France. Experience a variety of traditional cakes, pastries, breads and croissants.
What to try: Croissant and macaroons
This notable, Tom Douglas, bakery is not a traditional European bakery, but contains a mix of old European favorites and American classics. They specialize in holiday treats from Easter bunny "peeps" to pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving.
What to try: The "world famous" Triple Coconut Cream Pie
Piroshky Piroshky Bakery - Central Business District | Pikes Market (Eastern European)
Home of the Eastern European handpie, filled with various flavors, Piroshky Piroshky serves Seattle since 1992. With two locations, the Pike's Market contains crowded lines, especially on the weekend. These hand pies are made from scratch, with options from the sweet, savory and vegetarian category.
What to try: Potato & mushroom, marzipan, potato & cheese, Moscow roll, fresh rhubarb and whole baked apple.
This classic American bakery specializes in a variety of traditional and out-of-this-world cupcakes. If cupcakes aren't your thing, don't worry, there are plenty of French specialties available from lava cakes to macaroons. Although everything is quit nice, red velvet cake steals my heart.
What to try: Lava cake and Red Velvet Cupcake
For a taste of Prague right here in Seattle, visit the Little Prague bakery in West Seattle or one of their stands at the U-District Farmer's market. Owned and operated by a native Czech woman, her traditional baked goods taste as if they were shipped directly from Europe. The cherry and apple strudel taste just like Grandma's and the kolachkis are as amazing as the time of their first creation. The cafe serves traditional Czech and Eastern European meals.
What to try: Apple or cherry struedal, kolachkis and sauerkraut.
Bakery Nouveau | West Seattle (French)
This French bakery serves daily treats on a first-come, first-serve basis. From traditional macaroons to meringue pies, discover the best of France in quaint West Seattle bakery. Between sweet and savory options, it's hard to choose one sweet treat, but trust me anything is worth it.
What to try: almond croissant, pear or apple torte and basically anything and everything
Kaffeelatsch Seattle - Lake City Way (German)
Seattle is home to a large German community, but ironically this is the other traditional German bakery in the area. Lake City Way is a neighborhood north of downtown, almost near the Bothell suburb. Kaffeelatsch translates to "Coffee Gossip." Gossip over a cup of sustainable coffee while enjoying one of the many traditional German treats from bezels to sunflower seed rolls to fruitcake.
What to try: brezel and any of the cakes!
Do you have a favorite bakery in Seattle? If so, let us know and we'll be sure to taste test your suggestions!