I won’t pretend to know how to roast the best coffee beans, or that I’m a coffee connoisseur, but I do know that more than half of American adults drink coffee on the regular.
And I’m one of them.
Lucky for me, Los Angeles has an insane amount of coffee shops and a growing coffee culture to go with it.
A visitor will find the convenience of a Starbucks or Coffee Bean in almost every neighborhood. However, if you want something high-quality and local, these places will make your pour overs, cold brews and iced soy chais in the swankiest of settings and jazziest of playlists.
Here are five coffee spots to know and love:
You’ll find this place in DTLA’s historic Grand Central Market with a shiny new bar. The experience is like ordering an alcoholic drink: customers chill on a barstool and wait for the barista, as opposed to forming an orderly queue. It’s pricey, but I love sipping their iced almond-macadamia latte (with house-made milk) or dreamy milkshakes with a dose of espresso. There’s also free 5-minute parking right outside the stall, which is a game-changer.
The guys behind the G and B (Kyle Glanville and Charles Babinski) also have a second location called Go Get ‘Em Tiger with a small kitchen in Larchmont Village.
G&B Coffee is located on the Hill Street side of Grand Central Market.
Java Man—Hermosa Beach
Located at the corner of Manhattan and Pier avenues, this 1920s beach bungalow is a favorite in the South Bay. Come for the coffee, breakfast burritos and free Wi-Fi. Stay for the cozy “living room” atmosphere and location next to the beach. They also have local art installations on the walls which add to the ~community~ vibe.
There are two Starbucks locations within walking distance, but if you want to support the neighborhood — Java Man is the place to go. The owner also owns nearby Ocean Diner on Aviation Boulevard, a popular brunch spot.
Java Man Coffee House is located at 157 Pier Ave.
If you’re in Los Angeles and coffee is your thing, you should probably hit Intelligentsia in Silver Lake a.k.a. LA’s urban paradise. The team opened its first location outside of Chicago at Sunset Junction in 2007 (and then two additional spots in Venice and Pasadena). The place buys their beans directly from farmers around the world. I love the Silver Lake location because it is prime people watching in LA. Between the so-called hipsters—cringe, I hate that word—to actors and models and Internet dog celebrities with their human owners, there’s really something for everyone.
Oh, and the coffee is good too.
Intelligentsia’s Silver Lake location is at 3922 Sunset Blvd. | Tap here for a list of other Los Angeles locations.
Menotti’s Coffee Stop—Venice
This place is ideal for people who live near the boardwalk, or anyone visiting for the day and wants to get a quick grab-and-go cup. It’s small and not a place to spend seven hours typing a thesis paper, but rather to sip some of their Four Barrel coffee and soak in all the weird, creative and beautiful that is Venice, California. I usually order the iced brew with their delicious almond milk. The staff is chill and the drinks are like, really pretty. Seriously, one of their baristas is a Coffee Fest World Latte Art Champion.
Menotti’s Coffee Stop is located at 56 Windward Ave. (near the V-E-N-I-C-E letters)
Groundwork Coffee Co.—Arts District
I first went to Groundwork Coffee’s tiny Venice boardwalk location while in dire need of some caffeine after a night out on the town. I liked the barista, and I was secretly excited about the frequent customer card he gave me. Then I discovered the Arts District location—and the rest was history. Parking can be a hassle, but once you find a spot, it’s the best location.
They have a wide selection of drinks and food. I love the Vietnamese iced coffee, the house-made edamame hummus and the Green Fiend juice they carry from The Raw Juicery. The split-level design also offers a great view of other people working on their laptops, so you’ll be more inclined to get some work done too.
Plus they have a lot of outlets which should be the staple of every coffee shop, amirite?