guide to small businesses near Seattle University

Our #SpendLikeItMatters Guide for Seattle University is our guide and list diverse-owned small businesses near Seattle University. 

As a Seattle-based social enterprise, Intentionalist is passionate about social justice. Being a Seattle U alumnus myself, I thought it would be fitting to challenge Seattle University students (being reputably a population so enthusiastic about social change) to put forward a special effort to #SpendLikeItMatters. 

What does Intentionalist do? 

Intentionalist believes that where we spend our money matters, and we make it easy for folks to support their local community by spending money at small businesses owned by women, people of color, veterans, LGBTQ, families, and differently-abled people. You can read more about our mission here.

We’ve created a brief guide of small businesses near Seattle University just for you! You can reference this page whenever you’re out spending in the community. If you’re looking for spots in other neighborhoods (or other states!) you can search on our site to find businesses near you! Lastly, you can suggest any businesses we’re missing and help us grow our database! 

#SpendLikeItMatters: A Nice, Long Intentional-LIST for Eating and Drinking Near Seattle University


Ba Bar – owned by Sophie and Eric Banh #asianowned #familyowned #womanowned

Dumplings, and pho, and congee, oh my! Whether the moment calls for lunch, happy hour, or late night (early morning!) eats, the original Ba Bar location is here for you. Enjoy delicious street food at the restaurant named in honor of sibling owners Sophie and Eric Banh’s father.

Barrio Mexican Kitchen & Bar – owned by Tabitha and Larry Kurofsky #familyowned #womanowned

If you’re looking for Northwest foods with a Latin spin, look no further than Barrio, owned by Tabitha and Larry Kurofsky. Start your day with a bowl of warming pozole or a hearty breakfast burrito, then wind down with a couple seared salmon or roasted beet tacos with a blood orange margarita.

Byrek & Baguette – owned by Lily Gjekmarkaj #womanowned

Lily Gjekmarkaj was born in Albania to a family deeply rooted in food and cooking. As follows, much of Lily’s childhood was spent in the kitchen testing and preparing new dishes, which eventually led her to Byrek & Baguette, where she now serves versions of her own Meditteranean family recipes. 

Café Presse – owned by Jim Drohman and Joanne Herron #womanowned

Jim Drohman and Joanne Herron have been absorbed by the food and culture of France for a long time. Café Presse recreates a Parisian bar/café where customers are welcomed in any time of day.

Feed Co. Burgers – owned by Heather and Scott Staples #familyowned #womanowned

Heather and Scott Staples opened their first restaurant in 2000, and now own six unique businesses. At Feed Co. Burgers Central they take joy in deep-frying seasonal, locally-sourced ingredients and serving them up in burgers and sandwiches.

Katsu Burger – owned by Stephanie Kang #asianowned #womanowned

Resurrected by Stephanie Kang, Katsu Burger puts a Japanese twist on American classics, with their signature deep fried pork burgers, seaweed fries and green tea milkshakes.

Mighty-O-Donuts – owned by Ryan Kellner and Megan Helmer #familyowned #vegan #womanowned

Ryan Kellner and Megan Helmer founded Mighty-O Donuts to satisfy all eco-conscious, sweet and doughy cravings. The duo makes it their mission to respect nature, community, culture, individuals, and the environment.

Oma Bap – owned by Peter Pak #asianowned

Peter Pak, a second-generation Korean-American, grew up enjoying traditional Korean food. He opened his fast-casual restaurant, Oma Bap in 2011 as a gateway to the delicious flavors of Korea, with a menu that focuses on the traditional rice dish, Bibimbap.

Panwa Thai – owned by Yuthana Chathanathum and Nantaporn Cherennit #asianowned

Panwa Thai restaurant is a convenient place to stop by for authentic Thai food. Owners Yuthana Chathanathum and Nantaporn Cherennit’s take pride is serving fresh, affordable dishes, including vegetarian options for most items on the menu.

Peloton Cafe – owned by Paul Danos, Priscilla Hart, Dustin Riggs #womanowned

Peloton Cafe is the product of pure serendipity; Paul Danos, Priscilla Hart, and Dustin Riggs met each other through bike polo and decided to reinvent the traditional bike shop. The result, Peloton Cafe, not only offers professional bicycle service but also serves up delicious healthy food, locally brewed beer, and coffee.

Southpaw Pizza – owned by John Sundstrom, Kelly Ronan, JM Enos #womanowned

When esteemed chef John Sundstrom opened a pizza joint, Seattle was all ears. With the help of co-owners Kelly Ronan and JM Enos, he does not disappoint. Building his own signature brand of pizza, John honed a recipe for a wood-oven, wheat flour pizza and called it, Southpaw Pizza. While the topping options are upscale (or as Southpaw likes to call them, “wonderfully unorthodox”), the atmosphere is definitely casual and approachable. Let it be known though, Southpaw doesn’t serve pizza by the slice, they serve it by the slightly heftier “quarter.”

Bonus: Southpaw is a frequent supporter of local organizations, including Seattle University’s radio station, KXSU 102.1FM!

Taste of the Carribbean – owned by Dwayne Blake and Carlene Comrie #blackowned #womanowned

At their restaurant, Taste of the Caribbean, Dwayne Blake and Carlene Comrie make Fridays feel like a day at the beach with their monthly fish fries. Their true-to-Jamaica restaurant offers home-cooked, delicious Caribbean foods such as oxtail, jerk chicken, curried goat, and fried plantains.

Westman’s Bagel and Coffee – owned by Monica Dimas #latinoowned #womanowned

Want a bagel with a little more oomph? Carb up at Monica Dimas’ latest venture, Westman’s Bagel and Coffee. Yes, they stick pretty traditional with their flavors — everything, sesame, Maldon salt, pumpernickel, and cinnamon and currant. But there’s still plenty of room for everyone to get creative: You can load up your bagel with everything from lox and whitefish salad to dill and black pepper or honey and thyme schmears. (And, because it’s Seattle, they have a solid vegan schmear, too.)

Pro-tip: Head to Westman’s early on the weekend to beat the crowd!


The Chieftan – owned by Peter and Adrianna Johnson #familyowned #womanowned

Born in Belfast, Peter Johnson grew up working in Irish pubs, and now he and his wife Adrianna have established a number of their own in Seattle. At the Chieftain, they offer classic pub fare and daily drink specials.

Diesel Bar – owned by Mike Reis and Mark Hurst #familyowned #LGBTQowned

Mike Reis and Mark Hurst’s Diesel Bar is for “Bears, Bikers, Buddies, Bubbas, Blue Collars & Bad Asses.” Seattle’s premier Bear Bar serves as a home for this sub-group of the queer community, but is inclusive and welcoming to all.

Footprint Wine Tap – owned by Kenneth Dillon #blackowned #LGBTQowned

When you’re getting a little existential about climate change on your third glass of wine, it’s comforting to know that at least you’re drinking sustainably. Owned by Kenneth Dillon, Footprint Wine Tap is Seattle’s first and only sustainable keg wine on-tap bar. Sourcing fine wines from the Pacific Northwest, they specialize in biodynamic and organic wines. From wine production and transport to the furnishings in their space, Footprint Wine Tap aims to reduce their carbon footprint on all fronts.

Bonus: Order a bite to eat with your glass! They serve delicious pâté and crostini dishes.

Intrigue Chocolate & Coffeehouse – owned by Aaron Barthel and Karl Mueller

At Intrigue Chocolate & Coffeehouse, Aaron Barthel and Karl Mueller have added coffee to the initial concept behind their Pioneer Square artisanal chocolate shop. In partnership with Conduit Coffee, they offer their customers delicious chocolate beverages *and* outstanding coffee.

Madison Pub – owned by Roland Hyre #LGBTQowned

Roland Hyre started working as a bartender at the Madison Pub after he left the navy in 1991, and worked his way up, taking over ownership in 2011. The neighborhood gay bar prides itself on its longevity amidst a changing Capitol Hill landscape and customers return for its casual vibe and the friendliness of the staff.

Poco Wine & Spirits – owned by Tramale and Jackie Turner #blackowned #familyowned #womanowned

One of the few black-owned bars on Capitol Hill, Poco serves wine by the glass, specialty cocktails, beers on tap, and small plates, in an intimate setting. Owners Tramale and Jackie Turner pride themselves on their locally sourced wines and spirits.

Pony – owned by Mark Stoner #LGBTQowned

Seattle architect, Mark Stoner’s gay bar, Pony unapologetically celebrates gay culture. Built in a 1930s gas station building, the bar includes a small dance floor and an outdoor patio with a fire pit.

Tougo Coffee – owned by Brian Wells #blackowned

“We brew stories” is the motto at Tougo Coffee, where owner Brian Wells has been creating community and coffee since 2007. The First Hill location opened in 2019, and customers enjoy top-quality, ethically sourced coffee in a welcoming space where people of all ages gather and connect.

Who Did We Miss? This list is in no way comprehensive, so be sure to let us know some of your favorites by leaving a suggestion or via Instagram @intentionalist_! Thank you for your commitment to your community!

Thanks for all you do to #SpendLikeItMatters – shop small, buy local, and #BeIntentional!  Discover awesome brick + mortar small businesses in your community, suggest your favorites, and be sure that you’re following us on social media (InstagramFacebookTwitter).

Intentionalist is your local guide to small businesses and the diverse people behind them. We believe that where you spend your money matters, and we’re sure glad you do too! Whether you identify as a localist, activist, or just a good neighbor, we make it easy for you to connect with, learn about, and support small businesses in your community through everyday decisions about where you eat, drink, and shop.

By Haley Witt

Denver, CO

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