Flavors of the month

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

Velvet Elvis Cupcakes, Spicy Soup, and More
January 8, 2020
In honor of what would have been the King's 85th birthday this month (January 8), Cupcake Royale is baking up their Velvet Elvis cupcake: a banana cupcake topped with chocolate peanut butter buttercream, a banana chip, and (optional) bacon. (Cupcake Royale via Instagram)
It's January, and eateries all over Seattle are welcoming the New Year. Salt and Straw has released a special line of vegan flavors for their "Vegandulgence" series, while Frankie & Jo's has nixed cane sugar and is using alternative sweeteners in their seasonal scoops. Meanwhile, Cupcake Royale celebrates the King of Rock and Roll's birthday with their signature Velvet Elvis cupcake. Read on for more tasty food and drink specials here for the month. For more ideas, check out our full food and drink calendar.

Amandine Bakeshop
Pastry chef Sara Naftaly's gem of a French bakery in Chophouse Row is offering a galette des rois (a "king's cake, "traditionally baked to celebrate Epiphany in January), complete with its own tiny, glittery crown.

Champagne Diner
Interbay's upscale diner has a new lunch special—a fresh tofu banh mi served on a split croissant.

Cupcake Royale
In honor of the King's 85th birthday, Cupcake Royale's current special is the "Velvet Elvis" cupcake: a banana cupcake topped with chocolate peanut butter buttercream, a banana chip, and (optional) bacon.

Frankie & Jo's
The popular plant-based creamery's trio of January flavors are all made without cane sugar, using alternative sweeteners like California dates, maple syrup, and coconut sugar in its place: Almond Butter Cup, a chocolate-orange ice cream studded with chunks of house-made almond butter cups; Maple Pecan Crunch, a base sweetened with maple syrup and coconut sugar, with pecan and oat granola; and RGE Cookies & Cream, a flavor inspired by the shop's ice cream sandwich made in collaboration with dietitian and trainer Rachael DeVaux of the Instagram account @rachaelsgoodeats, a date shake ice cream with swirls of dark chocolate magic shell and gluten-free chocolate chip cookie chunks.

Hot Cakes
The dessert emporium's molten cake of the month is the Forest Cake, a dark decadence molten cake filled with Douglas fir milk chocolate ganache, served alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream with dry-burned caramel sauce and a piece of Meyer lemon rosemary chocolate bark. The vegan shake of the month is the Muddy Buddy Vegan Shake, a take on the sweet snack made with Chex cereal (also known as "puppy chow"): a peanut butter chocolate shake made with Frankie & Jo's ice cream and a house-made gluten-free and vegan cereal coated in peanut butter, chocolate, and powdered sugar.

Need some vegetable-heavy nourishment? Capitol Hill's health-food haven has rolled out its new winter menu, which includes a kitchari bowl (a stew with red lentils, brown rice, and garlicky mustard greens), a winter quinoa green salad with golden beets and citrus, and a kimchi bowl with brussels sprouts and kale.

La Marzocco
From Tuesday, January 7 until Monday, February 10, the roaster-in-residence at KEXP's coffee shop is Five Elephant, a specialty coffee roaster, cafe, and bakery based in Berlin and owned by couple Kris and Sophie Schackman. Their offerings will include two espresso options (a washed and natural Red Bourbon from El Salvador) and two filter options (a washed Orange Bourbon and a washed Tapazio, also from El Salvador) for the first two weeks, then move to feature coffees from Africa for the following three weeks, including a Kenya Kamwangi PB and Red Bourbon Rwanda Bumbogo on espresso and a Kenya Kamagogo AA and Red Bourbon Rwanda Vunga on filter. Guests will also be able to sip two winter specials: a Demerara & Cardamom Latte made with espresso, oat milk, cinnamon, and house-made cardamom syrup, and a Spicy Hot Chocolate, made with dark chocolate, homemade chili syrup, orange, star anise, cloves and a pinch of sea salt, garnished with a slice of dried orange.

Lady Yum
The macaron maven's January flavors are Sugar Cookie and Banana Fluffernutter, while the winter flavors include Cranberry Ginger Milk Tea, Amarena Cherry Dark Chocolate, and Amaretto Rose.

Li'l Woody's
The local burger joint's burger of the week is the "Spicy Fried Chicken Club," available until Monday, January 13, with chipotle mayo, lettuce, sliced tomatoes, jalapeños, Tillamook pepper jack cheese, Hills bacon, buttermilk fried chicken, and avocado.

Macrina Bakery
The longtime Seattle bakery chain has already 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.

The downtown American eatery run by the laudable nonprofit FareStart has a monthly "Maslow's Meal" special created by a local chef in collaboration with their FareStart apprentices. For January, chef Manu Calderon of Four Seasons Hotel Seattle and Goldfinch Tavern created a pan-seared chicken breast with mole, red rice, cilantro, pickled onion, and toasted sesame, available until January 31.

Mighty-O Donuts
The vegan donut shop's special flavor of the month is Orange Blossom, a classic vanilla cake donut with orange glaze.

Molly Moon's Ice Cream
The local ice cream parlor chain's four seasonal flavors are all inspired by classic desserts: Chocolate Truffle, a chocolate ice cream made with 85% dark chocolate and 45% milk chocolate from Theo Chocolate and chunks of milk chocolate ganache; Lemon Bar, a lemon ice cream with chunks of shortbread lemon bars and swirls of lemon marmalade; Orange Pound Cake, an orange creamsicle ice cream with chunks of orange-glazed pound cake with lemon zest; and Vegan Chocolate Covered Strawberry; a vegan and dairy-free flavors made with Viva Farms strawberries and a ribbon of chocolate hard shell. The current seasonal sundae is the Vegan Chocolate Covered Strawberry Sundae, vegan chocolate covered strawberry ice cream topped with chocolate hard shell, whipped cream, strawberry jam, coconut whipped cream, and a Chukar cherry. In addition, in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the shop will donate 10% of their proceeds this month to Africatown's Center for Education and Innovation, which aims to "cultivate and promote innovative education enhancement and community development solutions focusing on people of African descent."

Pho Bac
In case you missed it, Seattle's O.G. pho chain has re-opened its cheery red boat location in the International District. A new addition to the menu there: bún bò huế sườn bò, a spicy lemongrass pineapple beef soup with ribs, pork and shrimp meatballs, tendon, and pork blood.

Rachel's Ginger Beer
Transport yourself to the tropics with POG (Passion Orange Guava), the current seasonal flavor of spicy-sweet soda on tap.

Raised Doughnuts
The January flavors at Mi Kim's Central District doughnut shop include burnt sugar and orange, blackberry chevre, toasted coconut, mango mochi, blueberry cruller (Fridays only), garlic cheesy bread (Saturdays only), and bourbon chocolate cream (Sundays only).

Salt and Straw
For their January "Vegandulgence" series, Portland-based artisan ice cream maker Salt and Straw is releasing a line of entirely plant-based flavors, including Toasted Oat Milk and Cookies, an oat milk base with gluten-free chocolate chip cookie chunks and chocolate ganache; Banana & Peanut Butter Tofu Pudding, a "study of the amazing silkiness of tofu" made with Ota Tofu peanut butter pudding and soy milk banana gelato; Sunflower Butter Cups, a coconut cream-sunflower seed butter base with flecks of chocolate stracciatella and marionberry jam for a "deconstructed butter cup"; Rocky Road with Aquafaba Marshmallows, a chocolate ice cream with aquafaba (bean cooking liquid, which mimics egg whites in cooking) marshmallows and candied sunflower seeds; and Lemon Cheesecake Crumble, a salted vanilla coconut ice cream made with a lemon cashew cheesecake swirl and a graham-cracker-crust-like almond crumble.

Slab Sandwiches and Pie
Lark chef John Sundstrom's adorable sandwich and pie shop has a special sandwich, available for the week of January 8: a take on a banh mi, with grilled pork, pork liver mousse, aioli, fermented carrot, kohlrabi, grilled bok choy, fresh cilantro, and spicy piri-piri peppers.

Various locations
Looking to decrease your alcohol consumption for January? The local botanical-bubbly-soda purveyors at DRY Soda have teamed up with 25 Seattle bars and restaurants (including the restaurants of Ethan Stowell, Tom Douglas, and Thierry Rautureau) to provide interesting zero-proof drink specials this month for DRY January. They've also partnered with Columbia Distributing to make non-alcoholic options more plentiful across the city.