Best Coffeehouse: Espresso Vivace

Picking the best coffeehouse in a city of coffee maniacs is dangerous work. At Espresso Vivace, carefully sourced, shade-grown beans lead to some damn fine coffee. At the South Lake Union location in particular, the baristas take their time, pulling shots topped with thick, caramely crema—the richest I’ve tasted yet. Every cup is adorned with intricate foam art before it crosses the counter. And, my God, the Caffe Nico is a beautiful little beverage: a dainty cup of rich espresso capped with decadent steamed half-and-half, a dash of orange and vanilla syrups, and a pinch of cinnamon. Its aromas waft through your sinuses as you sip. It ends me. The baristas are nice here, too, which makes the experience all the more delightful. They seem genuinely proud of their art and happy to be here—which is more than I can say for some other similarly tasty coffee purveyors.

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