Magic Box @ The Reef

5 Must-Visit Coffee Shops in Los Angeles

5th Wave
01 August 2019

The 5th wave of coffee is well and truly established in los angeles, with established chains and independents adopting a boutique-at-scale approach to coffee and opening multiple sites with their winning recipes for success. here are our top picks.


People at Blue Bottle Bradbury coffee shop.

Blue Bottle Coffee Bradbury
300 South Broadway | DTLA


Located in the heart of Downtown, Blue Bottle’s signature store certainly sets the bar for the chain’s rapid expansion in the competitive US coffee shop market. The iconic late-19th Century Bradbury building is steeped in LA history and has even featured in famous films, such as Blade Runner and The Artist. With its high-vaulted ceilings, minimalist design and wide-open spaces, today Bluebottle’s flagship Los Angeles store is a magnificent setting to sample a celebrated array of specialty coffees.

Each of Blue Bottle’s trademark brews is lovingly prepared by an exceptional barista, and there’s plenty of ways to brew up your perfect pick-me-up – siphon, Aeropresss, Chemex and French presses are all lovingly displayed at the bar.

It’s also an oasis of calm in the bustle of LA. Bathed in natural light, this creative enclave is perfect for working, creative projects or simply to meet with friends.

This incredible location also houses Blue Bottle’s first library, so you can sip your perfect pour over while pouring over a great novel. What’s more, profits from all book sales benefit the nearby Library Foundation of Los Angeles.

Unique to this Blue Bottle outpost is the innovative Cold Bar. Here, baristas create spectacular infusions with sumptuous cold brew and single origin coffees to top off what is truly one of LA’s finest coffee shop experiences.

The interior of Verve Coffee Roasters on Spring St in LA.

Verve Coffee Roasters Spring St
833 South Spring Street | DTLA

With its floor-to-ceiling plants, solid wood counter tops and industrial-chic interior design, Verve Coffee Roasters’ flagship Los Angeles flagship location is a spacious haven of greenery in the bustling Downtown district.

But most importantly, the espresso is always on point here, and you can’t go wrong with any coffee made on the imposing Kees van der Westen machine. Make sure your beverage choice is paired with one of the delicious pastries on offer – the croissants are especially noteworthy. If you’re looking for a spectacular and unique Los Angeles coffee experience, and a moment’s peace from the heat of the city, Verve’s Downtown location is just the venue for you.

A hand holding a cup of coffee from Intelligentsia coffee.

Intelligentsia Coffee Venice Coffeebar
1331 Abbot Kinney Boulevard | Venice

Spot the neon steaming coffee cup and you’ve arrived. Sandwiched between two shops on the popular Abbot Kinney Boulevard, Intelligentsia’s legendary Venice location brings authentic slice of ‘rough around the edges’ Chicago to Los Angeles.

Inside, lofty ceilings, exposed beams and a glass overhang combine to give the store an achingly cool warehouse aesthetic. It’s also a popular workspace with locals and you’ll often find the capacious counters packed with busy professionals tapping away at laptops.

Intelligentsia serves coffee from its own roastery, so you’re assured that whether you choose and espresso-based beverage or delicately fragranced pour-over, the experience will be exemplary. If you’re looking for something a little sweeter than a coffee, sweet and spicy chai is a great alternative. Make sure to pick up one of the fresh baked goods too, you’ll be thankful you did.

The exterior of Maru Coffee in LA.

Maru Coffee Arts District
1019 South Santa Fe Avenue | Arts District

Expansive, airy and unmistakably chic, Maru’s second location is a veritable feast for the soul with its minimalist design and commitment to serving the finest coffees available. This coffee shop feels like walking into a day spa – it’s quiet, tranquil, and you’ll leave feeling at peace. The space is open and bright with exposed beams and a pared-back industrial aesthetic. The muted white and cream colour scheme is calming and therapeutic, giving way to the stunning Slayer machine, which takes centre-stage on the bar.

Maru collaborates with multiple roasters to craft its beverages, with roasts tailored for pour overs, drip and espresso featuring on a constantly rotating menu. The baristas are well-trained and know how to bring out the best flavours of each bean. If you’re not sure what to order, ask for a recommendation. The team know their ever-evolving menu best and are sure to help you find something you’ll love.

An espresso machine from Stumptown Coffee Roasters with the words "City of Angels" on it.

Stumptown Coffee Roasters
806 Santa Fe Avenue | DTLA


Nestled among the exposed brick facades and renovated warehouses of LA’s Arts District, Stumptown Coffee occupies an impressive ex-industrial building that oozes the brand’s signature Pacific Northwest charm. But more than just a coffee shop, the Santa Fe Avenue store hosts an impressive roastery to showcase Stumptown’s brand’s huge local roasting operation.

Stumptown’s signature nitro cold brew is available on tap, but it’s Stumptown’s espresso blend that steals the show, delivering balanced flavours of cherry, chocolate with a smooth caramel finish.

The store’s baristas are welcoming, knowledgeable and more than happy to introduce novices and aficionados alike to the huge range of coffees brewing methods available. Public tastings are also hosted weekly.

This article originally appeared in 5th Wave by World Coffee Portal.

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