Business Profile: Cafe Allegro

Interior of Cafe AllegroCafé Allegro is a Beloved U District Coffee Bar

Café Allegro is a U District espresso bar that opened in 1975. “Allegro loves being one of the neighborhood constants in a sea of change,” says co-owner Kate Robinson. Robinson owns the café with her business partner Chris Peterson.

Café Allegro has evolved over the years. The café is in the original location but has added two rooms and an onsite coffee roastery.

The café’s menu has also expanded. “There are a lot more beverage options–chai, flavors, drip, white chocolate–as well as a lot more size choices. In the last few years we’ve added beer and wine. Allegro gets pastries from local bakeries delivered daily. The food selection reflects customer tastes and bakery options available,” explains Robinson.

Poet’s Corner is a unique feature of the café. “Poet’s corner is inhabited by poet Brian Taylor who sets up shop in the corner of the cafe to work on his craft with his inspirational post cards and books spread out in front of him. He visits with friends and strangers, and bombards us with the world’s worst puns,” says Robinson. In addition to hosting a resident poet, the café displays work by local artists.

Allegro has a wide community of customers. “UW students, staff, and faculty are a large component of our daily coffee drinkers, but the café attracts many folk not associated with the UW who live and work in the neighborhood, as well as many tourists,” notes Robinson.

What is the best aspect of running a neighborhood business? “The U District is unique in that it is a melting pot of people who represent and participate in the new and old of Seattle,” says Robinson. “Always changing yet staying the same, the U District flexes and bends to the current era but at its core it always reflects the best of humanity.”

Open Daily,, 4214 University Way NE, entrance in the alley between University Way and 15th Ave NE, 206-633-3030