Best Restaurants 2016

Best New Restaurants of 2016: Peloton

Flowing-garden café fare hides inside this Central District bicycle shop.

By Kathryn Robinson October 17, 2016 Published in the November 2016 issue of Seattle Met

Peloton sdtodu

Because that’s a set of wrenches on the wall, and because it smells faintly of tire rubber—let’s just say the slightly rumpled Peloton doesn’t exactly inspire salivation. It’s a bike shop, after all, with a tire pump bolted to the sidewalk and a mechanic across from the espresso machine. It’s also an exhilarating daytime cafe at the vanguard of a trend we’re only just seeing the tip of: retailers planting restaurants in their shops. 

Such hybrids, cultural blowback against the alienations of online culture, tend to be rich in soul—amply true here. (Can there be a more vivid image of Seattle’s alt-earnestness than two twenty-somethings arguing the relative aromatics of Ethiopian and Brazilian coffees over the strains of KEXP?) But Peloton has an equally discriminating palate, thanks to co-owner McKenzie Hart, whose roasted veg hash might be a full-flowering garden of leeks, fingerling potatoes, cauliflower, and herbs, delicately sauteed and dotted with creamy chevre. Breakfast sandwiches on sweet whole wheat bread spill out bacon and egg yolk and arugula; densely flavorful chorizo breakfast burritos hold a city in thrall.

The menu is short, smart, and maintained as carefully as the bike chains, with Slate Roasters coffee and local craft beers for waiting out a tuneup. All with a heaping side of Peloton’s most cutting-edge specialty: excellence, unexpected.

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