Coffee shops. Whether I’m traveling alone, with my husband, my family, or with my in-laws -- there is something our trips have in common. We all enjoy visiting cafes and experiencing specialty cups the way locals in the neighborhood do. When we find a place we love nearby, the staff usually gets to know us -- and our orders -- right as we’re about to leave! I was in Los Angeles last month, and I enjoyed reacquainting myself with some old favorites and introducing new concepts into the mix. The demand for coffee and snacks in between shopping, hiking and walking is real.
Here are some of the places we went to.
This list is in no particular order, but I love Aharon. Twice now I’ve stayed blocks away, so it has became a frequent destination for me. They roast on site, their staff is super friendly and baked goods are from Milo + Olive. Everything that’s done here is with 1,000% passion. The owner, Aharon Vankin, is said to be the Walter White of cooking coffee. One of my favorite additions to a latte was homemade ‘nutella’ -- roasted chocolate hazelnut syrup from scratch!
With Belcampo and Sweet Greens as neighbors, you’ll definitely want to head over to over to this 3rd Street hangout. I can see how Verve can fast become a second office or meeting place in the area. Originally from Santa Cruz, Angelinos are fully embracing the northern coffee roasters and supporting their Farm to Street level initiative. I was told to get a cold brew, but I opted for an iced latte with almond milk.
Choosing where to eat at Grand Central Market can be tricky, as this downtown landmark brings together various cuisines and cultures of LA. My family members all ended up in different places. Thank goodness the caffeine option was straightforward for us all; G&B. When their iced coffee is on The New York Time’s list as one of the best in America, it was a no brainer with regards to where we were going to queue up. The secret, I found out, is their almond-macadamia milk; music to my ears. It was sooo good. I look forward to more dairy-free lattes from founders ‘G’ Glanville & ‘B’ Babinsk!
Walking along Fairfax, my husband and my brother were doing most of the dictating as to which shops we walked into. The PCPLA storefront caught my eye and the boys had no choice but to follow me in. I was told that the Paramount Coffee Project was from Sydney and recently moved to LA, introducing their format to an American audience. If there’s anything I trust, it’s some good Aussie coffee!
If you’re in Venice, you must stroll Abbot Kinney and you have to go into Intelligentsia as you make your way to the water. Their open space is pretty industrial and you can tell they take both coffee and community seriously. I got an iced Americano with a splash of almond milk. If I may quickly add, good luck with the line in the summertime.
I first had Blue Bottle in New York City. I remember posting a picture on Instagram to find out the brand was beloved amongst many. Now, I understand why. Birthed in Oakland, yet there has been movement down the coast with a network of cafes in Los Angeles. I went to both the Beverly Grove and South Beverly locations. Every time I’ve gotten the same drink, New Orleans Style Iced Coffee. Try it and you’ll be in the fan club as well.