I did it! I found the best vegan waffles in all the kingdom hiding southeast of my neighborhood: Cortona Cafe.
This little coffee house is nestled beneath giant maple trees on the corner of 25th and Union in the Central District. With two stories overlooking a mostly residential neighborhood, tables and benches made from reclaimed old growth beams, art on every wall, and the smell of coffee and waffles wafting, I could spend an entire Sunday there. In addition to standard fair and waffles, they make the most amazing vegan waffle I have ever had.
The vegan waffles are the thing. They are the reason. One waffle really is worth the bus ride (take the #2 from Queen Ann, First Hill, Cap Hill, or Downtown, it stops right out front). $6.50 will get you a large vegan Belgian waffle piled high with fresh fruit. Kirby said it was the best waffle he has ever had. No jokes. (It is also wheat free).
But if you are more of a late night cafe haunter, then Cortona has a plethora of vegan and gluten-free after-dinner treats to choose from including scones, peanut butter bars, muffins, and more. And they are open until 10 pm every single night.
Their coffee is from Herkimer Coffee, their teas are from other vegan-friendly joint, Remedy Teas, and they also carry beer and wine. You can even book their mezzanine for community events. Does my birthday count? (Also, big thanks to the diligent tweeter who brought this place to my attention (twice).
2425 E. Union [map]
Seattle, WA 98122