Flavors of the month

Flavors of the Month: Seattle Food & Drink Specials to Try in February 2020

Red Velvet Cupcakes, Sassy Conversation Hearts, and More
February 6, 2020
Macrina Bakery's red velvet "Cupid Cupcake" is filled with vanilla bean pastry cream and topped with buttercream, sugar, a raspberry, and a sugared rose petal. (Macrina Bakery)
February brings a host of sweet treats, including doughnuts, macarons, cupcakes, chocolates, and cookies, to the restaurants and bakeries of Seattle. Plus, Li'l Woody's Burger Month chef collaboration series is in full swing, and Salt and Straw has released its annual Chocolatier series with flavors inspired by chocolate makers like Theo and Fran's. Read on for more tasty food and drink specials here for the month. For more ideas, check out our full food and drink calendar or our list of places to get King Cake for Mardi Gras.

Bakery Nouveau
The beloved bakery promises an abundance of Valentine's Day-themed sweets, including house-made chocolates, caramel vanilla heart cookies, the "Rosé All Day" (milk chocolate and rose mousse with a raspberry rose gelée center on a cardamom shortbread cookie, with white chocolate glaze and candied rose petals), the "Sakura" (vanilla and cherry blossom bavarois layered between limoncello-soaked lemon chiffon cake with pink cocoa butter), the "Aphrodite" (lemon fromage blanc mousse with raspberry strawberry gelée, strawberry-brushed lemon chiffon glaze, strawberry raspberry coulis, mini madeleines, and rose petals), a chocolate raspberry mousse dome, and sugar cookies in the likeness of sassy conversation hearts and love notes. They're also reprising their ever-popular, glitzy King Cake, decked out in colorful sugar, this week until Mardi Gras (Tuesday, February 25). And beginning on Tuesday, February 11, they'll also be frying up paczki (Polish filled doughnuts traditionally served for Mardi Gras), filled with chocolate, vanilla bean, raspberry, lemon, strawberries and cream, or caramel apple and covered in powdered sugar or glaze.

Cookie Counter
The vegan bakery and ice cream shop has announced they are closing on February 29, but until then, you can still try some of their plant-based treats, like heart-shaped almond-glazed shortbread cookies.

Cupcake Royale
Seattle's oldest cupcakery is going all out for Valentine's Day: Their seasonal flavors include Blackberry Mascarpone (a coconut cupcake with whipped blackberry mascarpone frosting and white chocolate bark), Chocolate Dipped Strawberry (a chocolate cupcake with chocolate hard shell-covered strawberry frosting and a dehydrated strawberry), Cherry Chocolate Cheesecake Cupcake (a chocolate cupcake studded with fresh cherries and topped with cream cheese frosting, chocolate sprinkles, and a cherry), and Smokie Oakie Old Fashioned Cupcake (an orange-infused vanilla cupcake with smoked whiskey maple buttercream, Luxardo cherries, and orange zest). Plus, Deathcake, a lethal trifecta of sea-salted "chocolate decadence," Cupcake Royale's award-winning chocolate cake, and Stumptown espresso ganache featuring Theo Chocolate, is back for Valentine's Day season and available in a gluten-free version. (Past Stranger writer Megan Seling has documented the Deathcake's deadly powers in previous years.) Cupcake Royale suggests warming it up and digging in with a spoon.

Ellenos Yogurt
The Greek yogurt purveyor and perennial Pike Place favorite has released its newest flavor—ube (a stunning violet-hued purple yam).

Fainting Goat Gelato and Nutty Squirrel Gelato
These two gelato shops (which joined forces last year—Nutty Squirrel is owned by the Fainting Goat owners' daughter and her husband) will be scooping up strawberry tiramisu for a limited time.

Frankie & Jo's
For February, the plant-based ice creamery aims to "express the beauty and nourishment of self-care" through their three seasonal flavors and is partnering with the California wellness brand Sun Potion to add adaptogens (herbs and mushrooms that are claimed to help the body adapt to stress). The trio includes Chocolate Spicy Sugarcomb (an 85% dark chocolate cashew coconut milk ice cream with reishi mushroom powder and a swirl of cayenne sugarcomb candy), Toccocino (a coffee ice cream with maple syrup and coconut sugar, tocos powder, vitamin E, swirls of dulce de leche, and pieces of a house-made espresso bean chocolate bar), and Velvet Heartbeet (a returning favorite with a cashew coconut base, roasted red beets and medicinal hawthorn berries, and chunks of decadent chocolate ganache layer cake infused with ashitaba powder).

General Porpoise Doughnuts
Renee Erickson's bright, lovely doughnut shop is getting in on the Valentine's Day action with their vanilla custard doughnuts adorned with their very own conversation hearts (emblazoned with custom messages like "Whale You Be Mine?" and "Love You a Latte").

Hello Robin
Convey your affection with the bakery's heart-shaped sugar cookies frosted to resemble conversation hearts, with messages like "Cutie Pie," "You Go Girl," and "Be Mine."

Hot Cakes
The molten hot cakery is bringing back "Bling Blings," their organic take on the Hostess Ding Dong featuring chocolate cake with a chocolate buttercream filling and chocolate coating (and wrapped in snazzy gold packaging), starting this Friday, February 7. Their February molten cake of the month is the Honey Ginger Molten Cake, a dark decadence cake filled with honey-ginger sauce beside a scoop of vanilla ice cream, lemon-cardamom pear jam, and candied ginger toffee. The vegan shake of the month is the "Chocolate Rose Fluff Vegan Shake," with Frankie & Jo's plant-based ice cream, Theo chocolate chunks, and vegan rose marshmallow fluff.

Lady Yum
The macaron maven's February flavors are Burnin' Love (Red Hots cinnamon candy) and Passionfruit, while the winter flavors include Sugar Cookie, Amarena Cherry Dark Chocolate, and Amaretto Rose.

Li'l Woody's
As part of their yearly Burger Month collaboration, Li'l Woody's has assembled a crack lineup of four local chefs to each create their weekly burger specials for February. This year features the "Good Old Burger" with fry sauce, American cheese, and yubeshi onions from chef Brady Williams of Canlis (Feb 4-10); the Puerto Rican-inspired "Boricua Burger" with two picadillo patties, Sazon, plantain chips, and sauce from chef Eric Rivera of Addo (Feb 11-17); the "Homersapien" with a lamb patty, chanterelle mushrooms, whipped garlic, zaatar-spiced Tim's potato chips, and date ketchup from chef Logan Cox of Homer (Feb 18-24); and the "Manolin Sandwich" with a breaded pork cutlet, onion, and a sweet bun from chef Liz Kenyon of Manolin and Rupee Bar (Feb 25-March 2).

Macrina Bakery
The longtime Seattle bakery chain has released their Valentine's Day menu, available through February 16. Treats include chocolate rose gianduja, "Eros cake" (a gluten-free hazelnut torta layered with mocha mousse and speckled meringue and frosted with espresso buttercream), mini chocolate raspberry cake, mini strawberry vanilla bean cheesecake, "Cupid's cupcake" (red velvet cake filled with vanilla bean pastry cream and topped with buttercream, sugar, a raspberry, and a sugared rose petal), chocolate cherry almond heart bread, chocolate wafers, sour cherry shortbread cookies, and heart-shaped Valentine's Day cookies.

Mighty-O Donuts
The vegan donut shop's special flavor of the month is Banana Bread, a banana cake topped with brown sugar glaze. And if you'd like to surprise someone who prefers fried dough to flowers, they also have donut bouquets, available to pre-order through 5 pm on February 13 for pick-up on Valentine's Day at the Green Lake and 2nd and Madison locations.

Molly Moon's Ice Cream
The local ice cream parlor chain's four seasonal flavors include Vegan Yeti, a vegan and dairy-free version of their popular Yeti flavor with sweet cream ice cream, vegan pepita-butter granola, chunks of dark Theo chocolate, and ribbons of vegan caramel; Cinnamon Roll, a brown sugar ice cream made with Red Ape Cinnamon; Pop Heart, a berry-cherry ice cream with chunks of house-made berry-cherry pop tarts; and Cocoa Crispy Milk, a cereal milk-inspired flavor made using freshly baked chocolate waffle cones. The sundae of the month is the Pop Heart Sundae, a sundae with a scoop of "Pop Heart" ice cream, milk sauce, whipped cream, sprinkles, and a Chukar cherry.

Rachel's Ginger Beer
Need a pick-me-up from the dreary weather? The spicy-sweet soda purveyor's current seasonal flavor on tap is the vibrant golden-yellow Spring Punch, a combination of carrot, tangerine, and pineapple.

Raised Doughnuts
The Central District doughnut shop's February flavors include a chocolate raspberry crunch bar, red velvet, cookies and cream, strawberry mochi, coffee crullers (Fridays only), everything bagel (Saturdays only) and lemon meringue (Sundays only).

Salt and Straw
Each February, the Portland-based artisan ice creamery pays tribute to local chocolate makers with their seasonal flavors for their Chocolatier series. This year, their limited-time creations include Fran's Almond Gold Bar, a flavor inspired by a homemade ice cream that chocolatier Fran Bigelow's friends used to make for her in the '80s featuring a salted vanilla base, caramel and chocolate swirls, and Fran's Almond Gold Bar pieces; Theo Chocolate's Peanut Butter and Jelly, a chocolate peanut butter ice cream with raspberry jam and Theo's dark chocolate peanut butter cups; Fresco's Dark Chocolate Oat Milk, a vegan and dairy-free chocolate sorbet made with Fresco's Dominican Republic Oko Caribe, oat milk, sugar, and salt; Forte's White Chocolate Lemon Pepper, a lemon pepper ice cream with chunks of Forte Chocolate's signature lemon and pepper bar; and Intrigue's Coffee Chocolate and Salted Fluff, a mocha latte ice cream made with Intrigue Coffee Chocolate and lightly salted marshmallow fluff.

Seattle Chocolate Company
The local woman-owned and women-led confections company has unveiled a Valentine’s Day Truffle Bar Collection with a trifecta of flavors: Sparkling Mimosa, a dark chocolate truffle bar with hints of orange and champagne embedded with popping candy for an effervescent effect; Pretzel + Peanut, a dark chocolate bar with hints of stout; and Baby Cakes, a milk chocolate truffle bar with a red confetti meltaway center. There's also the Romeo and Juliet Box, a heart-shaped box with an assortment of truffles in flavors like Salted Almond, Dark Sea Salt Toffee, Blackberry Creme, Pink Bubbly, Tukwila Hazelnut, Milk Chocolate, Champagne, and San Juan Sea Salt. The company's jcoco line also has a Dark Collection gift box with three flavors: Boharat Middle Eastern Spice (dark chocolate with black peppercorn, cumin, cinnamon, and clove), Black Fig Pistachio, and 80% Dark Chocolate.

Theo Chocolate
Greenwood's organic and fair-trade chocolate factory has a variety of limited Valentine's Day treats, including bars in Salted Black Licorice (70% dark chocolate with sea salt and black licorice) and My Cherry Baby (45% milk chocolate), a limited-edition eight-piece "confection collection" called Love is Love, a collection of a dozen caramels, and a gift box called "Love is Sweet" that includes caramels, two bars, Peanut Butter & Jelly cups, and Coffee & Cream cups.

Trophy Cupcakes
The gourmet cupcake bakery has plenty of festive treats, including red rose cupcakes with Valrhona chocolate cake and a swirl of red buttercream (suggested for "The Bachelorette, Garden and Alice in Wonderland parties"), dark chocolate raspberry cupcakes with raspberry buttercream and bittersweet Belgian chocolate ganache, a "Lovefetti" cupcake (a Valentine's take on the brand's signature "Yumfetti" cupcake, decked out with conversation hearts, candy coated chocolate balls, lovefetti sprinkles and a frosted circus animal cookie), and the more-is-more "Love Potion No. 9" cupcake (red and pink funfetti cake with vanilla buttercream, a chocolate-covered strawberry macaron, red lollipop, wafer cookie dipped in glitter, marshmallow, meringue kiss, white chocolate-dipped pretzel dusted with candy hearts, circus animal cookies, donut holes, and a collection of red and pink Valentines candies). The shop also has macarons in red velvet, chocolate-covered strawberry, and raspberry champagne.