Oddfellows hipster, in a good way


Oddfellows’ exposed brick walls and scarred wood floor are evidence of the building’s 100-year-old history.
Andrew Haskell/THE FALCON

It’s a faded American flag hung on the wall, eggs cracked in a cast iron skillet and biscuits piled high with strawberry jam. It’s feet dangling from bar stools, black (Stumptown!) coffee stirred with a spoon and warm yellow light shining through tall open windows.

It’s Oddfellows Café and Bar, and it’s as close as you’ll get to home cooking this side of spring break.

At 1525 10th Avenue in one of the quirkiest neighborhoods in Capital Hill, Oddfellows is an all-day, all-night kind of place, though it’s arguably in its best light on a lazy morning after a late night.

Then, it’s comfort food you’ll want, and that’s what Oddfellows serves up in reliable yet relaxed fashion. Start out with beignets, a New Orleans classic of deep-fried choux pastry dusted with powdered sugar. Here, they come out piping hot with a side of homemade fruit jam. You’ll be licking your fingers before you know what happened.

If it’s heartier fare you’re after, the homemade biscuit and eggs are light enough to send you to cloud nine while still filling your stomach. And did we mention there’s bacon? As an entrée addition or an ordered side, it’s fried up to scrumptious sizzling perfection.

For the sweet tooth, there’s a mammoth slice of brioche French toast the size of a three-stack, topped with sweet and zesty mascarpone cheese and your choice of maple syrup or fruit compote—rhubarb and tart cherry on this visit.

Oddfellows is also known for their pleasing pastries, dripping confections tantalizingly displayed at the counter.


Oddfellows Café and Bar’s outdoor patio is the perfect place for a sunny brunch.
Andrew Haskell/THE FALCON

Tenants from the Oddfellows building and neighborhood dog-walkers drop in in a constant revolving door for their coffee and sweets, cementing this place’s reputation as a community fixture.

Exposed brick walls, a soaring high-beamed ceiling and scarred wooden floors all add to the old-world charm, but Oddfellows is itself a part of history. The century-old building also houses Century Ballroom and Elliot Bay Book Company. The café proudly displays a snapshot of the space’s founding fathers, complete with starched shirts and stern smiles.

That sternness is a thing of the past with the staff however, who are accommodating, punctual and ready to offer advice on everything from absinthe to avocado.

They’re an impressive bunch, considering Oddfellows is open not only for brunch but for lunch, dinner and late-night as well. The kitchen stays open until 12 a.m., followed by two hours of bar time on Friday and Saturday nights. Then, the menu includes hot and cold sandwiches, stew, Oddfellows classic meatballs with polenta and mascarpone and a sweets menu guaranteed to send you into a coma—in a good way, of course.

In short, Oddfellows does slow-down, sweet and savory neighborhood hangout right, and it’s a perfect place for that comfort food and good conversation fix.

Not to mention, the Seattle-hipster-everything-organic vibe is pulled off without a hitch, leaving patrons to enjoy—or Instagram—their meals to their heart’s content. Don’t mind if we do.

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