Food & Drink

Fave Five: Eat, Shop, Be Creative

Explore your artistic side, a discreet view, and unexpected local flavor

By Heather Lowenthal August 11, 2023

Flora and Henri-28 copy 2-cropped

This article originally appeared in the July/August 2023 issue of Seattle magazine.


START your writing life this summer at Seattle’s Hugo House with a one-hour drop-in writing circle, an all-day “Write-O-Rama” event or fully commit with a course spanning six weeks. Seattle nonprofit literary arts organization Hugo House has provided a central place for writers to meet and learn since 1996. Get started on your sci-fi novel, discover flash fiction or listen to an author read. Everyone has a creative voice, but sometimes it takes a guide to help you find it.


VIEW the city from within the discreet landscape of Seattle’s Volunteer Park. While others crowd to the (narrow) Kerry Park on Queen Anne Hill, or down to the newly renovated waterfront along Alaskan Way, those in the know are strolling through the park surrounding the Seattle Asian Art Museum, relaxing on the vast lawn, or finding shade and plant life inside the landmark conservatory. This multifaceted experience is tucked away on north Capitol Hill, where you can enjoy the July Fourth fireworks exploding over Lake Union from above. For the holiday, save time and park a few blocks away in the neighborhood.


DISCOVER salad while you shop at Nordstrom. Yes, the clothing store. No, not among the shoes and cosmetics. Head to the Nordstrom Café on the fourth floor of the downtown flagship location. There’s an array of menu options, but everyone I know orders one of the salads. My favorite is the shrimp and arugula with sweet corn. This one’s dotted with beautiful cubes of polenta croutons. You will stand in line to order, but the café seating is pleasant and comfortable, the service is efficient, and at the end of your meal, you’ll be served a delicate, individually wrapped chocolate mint with your receipt. Enjoy it. You’ve just eaten a salad.


EXPERIENCE the work of modern artists from around the world this summer at the Seattle Art Fair. A four-day p(art)y showcasing new, innovative art from more than 80 galleries nationally and internationally, including museums and institutions. There’s so much creativity to display that it requires the vast Lumen Field Event Center to feature it all. Founded by the late Paul Allen, this event is one to attend even if you’re “just looking.” Plus, it promises to offer the most interesting people-watching of the summer.


STEP into an oasis of simple, beautiful things at boutique Flora and Henri in Pioneer Square. Independent Seattle shops are scattered across the city, and it’s easy to miss them if you don’t frequent a neighborhood regularly. Guilty as charged. I was reminded by an acquaintance wearing a stylish crossbody bag that this shop was right where I’d left it before the pandemic. You’ll find an inventory of well-made clothing, fashionable shoes, gifts, books, and toys. The store is an easy walk east from the renewed waterfront.

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