Opened in 2007 and located among the elegant homes of Seattle’s North Capitol Hill, Volunteer Park Cafe (VPC) is chef Ericka Burke’s quintessential neighborhood meeting place. There are mismatched vintage chairs, throw pillows tossed along banquettes, and a communal table running the length of the inviting, sunlit room. The food is home-style, ranging from house-made pastries in the morning to a selection of fresh salads, soups, and sandwiches come lunchtime. As the lights dim and the candles are lit, table service begins and rustic pizzas make their way to tabletops, alongside seasonal offerings like burrata with bing cherries, lemon verbena, sweet cicely and pistachios and a vegetable-loaded spring pappardelle. Finally, a generous selection of boutique wines can be enjoyed at the cafe or taken to go.