Little Oddfellows Is a Writer’s Paradise…with Sandwiches

And mocktailesque new ways to drink cold brew.

By Kelsey Sipple August 6, 2015

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Just the place to start that Great American Novel.

Nestled in the back corner of Elliott Bay Books, Linda Derschang’s newest outpost Little Oddfellows is a writer’s oasis inside a reader’s paradise. “They totally fixed this place up!” gushes a hyperstylish 20-something on her way in, and she’s right: Gone is the warm wood and cozy-bookstore feel of the late Elliott Bay Café. The new space features a monochromatic color scheme (white wood being the most dominant change, along with a bold reprint of the menu on the back wall), a neo-European vibe, and greenery in every corner. 

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Little Oddfellows highlights: abundant houseplants, country-style baked goods, and a hot cortado.

The place certainly borrows elements from its older sibling next door, Oddfellows Cafe and Bar, but has a more chic coffeeshop vibe. The menu has yet a large range of options for lunch: gazpacho, baguette sandwiches, house-made red and green juices.  More than just a spot for a caffeine fix inside a bookstore, Oddfellows is a literary nerd/Pinterest user’s dream that makes a pretty fantastic ham and swiss panini to boot. Within five minutes of sitting, I spotted two patrons thumbing through personal copies of Go Set a Watchman, countless Moleskine notebooks, and several interesting mocktail-style ways to consume zeitgeisty cold brew (most intriguing: mixed with tonic and lime).

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Even the bathroom key is well read.

Thinking of starting an amateur screenplay and being that guy? This is definitely the spot to do it. The room is well lit but not too bright, with a quiet soundtrack of R&B in the background and fantastic people-watching. Despite being on the first floor of the Elliott Bay Book Company, the cafe’s simple, uber-clean aesthetic makes it feel more like a café en plain air or Scandinavian loft. Even the patrons look hired to match the decor—horn-rimmed glasses, matte red lipstick, and short bangs abound. Cafegoers are scattered around the rooms various corners with laptops and bold cortados in ’70s turquoise mugs. And on a bathroom break, you’re greeted with the faces of countless literary icons, just in case the main cafe’s blank-canvas feel and white-bookshelf wallpaper isn’t enough to get the creative juices flowing.

The Oddfellows website has sample menus and other basic details about its new little sibling.

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