What’s the one thing that makes any coffee shop better for all mom-kind? The term “kid-friendly.” Thankfully, many coffee venues around the Sound offer not just caffeine for us but a haven for our little ones, making our white-chocolate mochas taste just a little sweeter. For all you Eastside and North Sound mamas (and dads), here are 12 coffee shops and cafes that serve up a kid-friendly atmosphere as well as your favorite sips and eats (including one venue for families with older kids that specializes in gaming).
(Not seeing your favorite? Post in comments below!) And try our more general kid-friendly coffee shops list to explore other Seattle regions!
1. The Flying Apron Café, Redmond
For a truly gluten-free and vegan experience, check out this spot. All ingredients and facilities are audited annually by the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO). From cupcakes and muffins to sandwiches and lasagnas (plus a fresh juice bar!), this place has vegan variety. Unlike its funkier Fremont location, the Redmond Flying Apron specifically caters to families, too. Homey and inviting, the cafe is a great stop-in. (They even do custom cakes!)
Let’s play: There are games (for adults and kids) and a Junior Artist Board that features works of art by local artists and kids.
Find it: Redmond Square, 16541 Redmond Way, Redmond, WA 98052
2. Soul Food Coffee House, Redmond
If Starbucks were a store-bought sugar cookie, this coffeehouse — conveniently located near the Sammamish Trail in Redmond — would be your aunt Betty’s red velvet, rainbow-sprinkled organic cupcake. Part community cafe, part coffee shop and part live music venue, this homey coffee house also offers live music, poetry readings and even a community drumming circle. The fare is almost exclusively organic, with tons of vegan and dairy-free options.
Let’s play: The “Just For Kids” menu offers fun choices such as the Curious George (milk & banana) and the Zebra (milk with a swirl of white and dark chocolate). There is also a corner kids’ area with toys and books.
Find it: 15748 Redmond Way, Redmond, WA 98052
3. Grange Cafe, Duvall
Fresh, local ingredients, friendly service and an awesome kids’ play area make this Duvall restaurant a best bet for young families. The Grange Cafe supports local farms, which is apparent through their fresh and rotating menu, which includes kids' brunch and dinner options. Don't miss the deck in nice weather!
Let’s play: While waiting for their mac n’ cheese or French toast, kiddos can play in a great space complete with a train table, toys, blocks and books. (The Grange Cafe will be making some fun changes to the play area soon, so check their Facebook page for updates)!
Find it: 15611 Main St. N.E., Duvall 98019
4. Issaquah Coffee Company, Issaquah
Loved by locals and praised by coffee enthusiasts, Issaquah Coffee Company serves Stumptown Coffee — and they also serve Stumptown beer. Pair a Cougar Mountain latte or Tiger Mountain mocha with delicious baked goodies (including gluten-free and vegan treats from Flying Apron) and sit back while the kiddos munch on mini-muffins and play in the toy/train table area. Heads up: The owner’s friendly pup may be around, so take note if you a have a little one who is dog-shy.
Let’s play: Kids (and moms) will love the cute play area that includes toys and a train table.
Find it: Gilman Village, 317 Northwest Gilman Blvd., Issaquah, WA 98027
5. Alexa’s Cafe, Bothell
Located in the oldest and most charming street in Bothell, Alexa’s Cafe is a Main Street favorite. Families come to enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner in the cafe’s 1927 brick building. Comfy and inviting, the place delights with brick walls and chalkboards, paintings by local artists, mismatched china and farmhouse pine.
Let’s play: Look for the corner booth behind the register area — there are a couple of boxes of children’s toys and books. Grab a few items to play with at your table while you wait for the food to arrive. More pluses: Kids’ menus, crayons, high chairs and staff and clientele who won’t bat an eye over spilled cocoa.
Find it: 10115 Main St., Bothell, WA 98011
6. The Ale House & Eatery, Bothell
Another Bothell favorite, the Main Street Ale House, first opened on (you guessed it) Main Street, but has since moved to the 1916 historical Kaysner Estate (and shares the location with Preservation Kitchen, which is worth a date night). The Ale House has a nice balance: You’ll find both kids menus and linen napkins. The fare includes soups and sandwiches, big burgers, fish n’ chips and an awesome mac and cheese (be sure to try their house-made potato chips).
Let’s play: There is a natural sandbox area in front (dump trucks included). Plus, if it’s nice out, you can have lunch at one of the patio tables next to the play area.
7. Third Place Commons, Lake Forest Park
No matter where you're coming from, Lake Forest Park's Third Place Commons — with a large food court, play area, performance space and bookstore with a large selection of new and used books — is worth the trip. It has something for everyone, all built
around the idea of a “third” place (first is home; second is work/school; third is a gathering place in the community). Grab coffee, pastries, soups or sandwiches from the cafe, choose a table (there are plenty) and relax!
Let’s play: Little ones will love the enclosed play area in the Commons, and any young reader will adore the large section of children's books (within Third Place Books) stocked to the brim. In the food court, there’s also a juice-your-own orange juice machine, a photo booth, a life-sized chess board. Don't miss the weekly story times at Third Place Books (Fridays at 10 a.m.).
8. The Filmore, Mill Creek
For a truly unique experience, check out the new Filmore in the Mill Creek Town Center, an all-ages gaming lounge and cafe. Owner Steven Lopez wanted to get away from the stereotype that all video gaming is anti-social, and created a warm, inviting and social place for both adults and kids to eat, drink and well, play video games. The Filmore aims to deliver a high-end experience, from Velton’s locally roasted coffee and fine wines to locally crafted beers and award-winning Maltby Cafe cinnamon rolls.
Let’s play: There are more than 20 PlayStation 4 and X Box 1 gaming stations. Guests can play individually or set up a LAN (community) video-game session.
9. Spotted Cow Coffee Company, Mill Creek
Mill Creek’s coffee hot spot is found in the Spotted Cow Coffee Company. Saddle up to the bar and take a peek at their on-site coffee roaster; kiddos can watch the roasting process while enjoying a freshly made gelato. Handcrafted with local ingredients, the gelato comes in fun and unique flavors, like coconut or honey lavender! More pluses: comfy chairs, an inviting atmosphere and big picture windows. Bring a book or coloring pad, sit back and stay awhile!
Let’s play: Check the website for live music and story times.
10. Common Ground Coffee and Cupcakes, Renton
Cupcakes and coffee always make a good combo, especially when there are toys involved. This cute downtown Renton coffee shop is colorful and boutique-y, doling out delish cupcakes and coffee.
Let’s play: Kiddos will have a sugar-crazed blast playing with the rocking horses, toys and books.
Find it: 900 S. Third Street, Renton