1.25.2010

Cruisin' Cafes: Los Angeles, CA

As the aptly-titled Golden State, far too many underestimate the true appeal and ability of uncovering captivating cafes teeming with history, and indulging in piping hot potations rich with chocolate, vanilla, and caramel flavors mingling with luscious layers of alabaster-hued whipped cream reminiscent of plush white clouds floating carelessly in the clear blue sky when traversing the sultry soils of Southern California – specifically Los Angeles. It’s a true tragedy if you ask me; an odium of sorts brought about by the unwavering, steady sunshine which makes everyday beach ready, coupled with the lyrical musings of Albert Hammond’s It Never Rains in Southern California. When it all comes down to it, however, so is not the case.

Dolls, regardless of the slew of beaches ripe for one’s picking, or the omnipresence of teeny tiny bikinis, flip flops, and cutoff denim shorts, Los Angeles is a luxurious location for hopping from one café hot spot to another. As the home of the culture-infused Little Tokyo, celebrity-spotting Hollywood, shopper’s paradise known as Olvera Street, and countless other can’t-miss landmarks; The City of Angels proffers a virtual plethora of pulchritudinous places perfect for reacquainting oneself with Americano’s, Mexican Hot Chocolate, and Green Tea – all it takes is a bit of browsing to find complete bliss!

Lost Souls Café To put it in simple terms, Lost Souls Café is that exclusive social circle you begged admittance to during your high school years; only instead of being turned away by the head cheerleader or cute boy playing the role of Rebel Without a Cause with a severe tongue-lashing and a villainous laugh heard round the world, Lost Souls welcomes you with open arms – as long as you’re able to find it, that is.

Camouflaged from prying eyes within a tiny alleyway draped with singular lines of fairy lights crisscrossing overhead, your only indication of its presence a small sign boasting the words Lost Souls Café spotted on the street; Lost Souls is, from external presentation, a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it scene. Nevertheless, once you find your way inside, you can’t help but fall under the enchanting spell effused by its sights, sounds, and scents alone.

Exposed pipes on the ceiling, and a roomy setup create a slightly grungy, warehouse vibe, which juxtaposes with a modernistic, artist’s loft aesthetic when the large metal tables – perfect for big groups – pristine white walls, and various pieces of kitschy art decorating the interior are taken into account. Yet, even through all this, Lost Souls extends a cozy charm to customers which give it a homey, hole in the wall atmosphere that is nearly impossible to tear yourself away from. The hush-hush high society structure will lure you in; the crepes, chocolate banana shakes, and cappuccinos will keep you coming back for more! Harlem Place Alley, 124 W. 4th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90013.

The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa Darlings, while the name will make you think otherwise, there is no admittance process one must go through to achieve entry into The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa; nor is there an enforced dress code prohibiting those not decked out in plaid from passing through the sole front door flanked by tiny tables topped with umbrellas to shield visitors with a desire to sit out of doors from the scorching sun.

Though the moniker will fill your mind with thoughts of pretentious prep schoolers, The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa serves up some of the finest latte art imaginable from its cushy Culver City cubbyhole, as opposed to presenting patrons with scholars seeking to further their artistic endeavors. Situated mere steps from Sony Studios, The Conservatory is a family-owned paragon which opened its doors back in 1995, and has remained a fabulous fixture in the community ever since.

Feed bags full of coffee beans from all over the world greet you upon arrival; while a stout tree sporting full branches, leaves, and even a little hidey hole with stuffed animals popping out from within stands tall front and center making one feel as if they are sipping right in the middle of the rainforest. Even better than the décor, however, is the ambiance, which makes you feel as if you’re amongst friends even when simply chatting with the baristas whipping up your requested beverage. Don’t depart without savoring the Vanilla Latte; you’ll never taste something as explosive! 10117 Washington Blvd., Culver City, CA 90232.

Which of these Los Angeles cafes would you like to cruise?


Fashionably yours!


Thanks to Tumblr for the pictures.


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68 comments

Dream Sequins said...

Culver City is definitely where it's at! I need to visit some more cafes other than my standby Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, when I'm in town! xx

Joanne said...

I think you'd find me at The Conservatory. I like the idea of Sony Studios right next door, maybe a bit of music ambiance influences the shop?

Victoria-H said...

Aw Thank you ^^
Oh, looove LA. I wish I had been to more local cafes and stuff during my trips there, but more will come :) I should def. check these places out :)

Jacqueline said...

I haven't been to LA so I would be happy to cruise any of them! xo

www.FashionSnag.com

Couture Carrie said...

Must check out the Conservatory on my next trip to the left coast!

Fab post, darling!

xoxox,
CC

Theresa said...

I should really take advantage of the fact that I live so close to LA. It's easily less than an hour away. I must go soon. :) And I will definitely make a point to stop by one of these Cafes when I go. I'm thinking the Lost Souls Cafe though. :)

Kristin said...

Wish I was going to make it out west so I could share some java with a certain two ladies before one of them head off to the empire!

That Chelsea Girl™ said...

There are so many little hipster coffee shops in LA, it's overwhelming. I think I'd probably be at the Lost Souls Cafe, reminds me a bit of LA native Francesca Lia Block's Weetzie Bat books.
Take care!

LAUREN said...

The Conservatory sounds absolutely lovely! Next time I'm down in the area, I'll have to make my way over there... I love love love vanilla lattes! xx

Lottie said...

great post! wish i could visit them but im a bit far away :(

The Trendy Fashionista said...

Thanks for your comment. Cute coffee.


-The Trendy Fashionista
http://thetrendyfashionista.blogspot.com

All Women Stalker said...

I think I want to go to Lost Souls now...:)

ediot said...

ahh how i wanna go to LA. do you happen to know any nice jobs avaliable therE? hihi. :)
thanks so much for your comment.youre such an darling! hope you had an great weekend. what did you do?
take care
xx ediot

nookie said...

I love every place wich has good coffee,doesn't matter:)

Polished Sense said...

That panda bear design just looks too cute to eat! Love that kind of creativity!

♡,
Jessica

ana said...

I'm planning a trip to LA I'll definetely write down the address of these two lovely coffee shops... :)

The Blonde Duck said...

You had me at fairy lights.

sootjeelina said...

This is going to sound wierd but: cute coffee :D
BTW I'd like to go to Lost Souls Café :D
Thanks for your comment!

xoxo Sootjeelina

English Rose ♥ said...

I wish I was there - although getting coffee would probably be quite far down my list!

j'adore the panda foam!!

thanks so much for your wonderful comment - apologies for the ridiculously late reply!

Stay safe and chic darling,
English Rose x
http://iamanenglishrose.blogspot.com

K said...

The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa sounds amazing!

Mary Jo from TrustYourStyle said...

Lost Souls is calling my name and it's so close to my work stomping grounds--(ha, pun not intended) anyway, I will bookmark this for my next downtown trip. Thank you!

xo Mary Jo

Elizabeth said...

Oh the one with feed bags of beans...that sounds right up my alley. Such a wonderful post!

Sabine said...

Difficult one, but in the end I like a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere - So the Conservatory it is! Sabine x

tess said...

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please stop by!

jayne/tess

Senorita Fashionista said...

I will just have to check out Lost Sould when I get back to my roots! xoxo Jolie

Bonnibella said...

I would go to both! but I think the Conservatory with the family owned business, beautiful latte art and a fine vanilla latte will get me. I visit L.A. quite often and put these cafe on the list.

diana said...

Lost Souls is one of the best cafes in Downtown LA. I discovered it through a friend when I was working in Downtown la. I was a frequent customer and the environment is very chill. I love their blended drinks especially the Cookie Monster!

Luana said...

I'm going to keep track on all of these for when I visit the U.S, no joke! They all sound amazing. Also I don't know how I missed your last post, but it is all kinds of wonderful!! So detailed.

bananas. said...

I go wherever the mexican hot chocolate is. That is my favorite. No other cocoa compares.

Scientific Housewife said...

27 lip glosses?! What a collection! Do you wear them all or are some forgotten?

Mimi said...

L.A. is my ideal place to go to a cafe. Perfect weather and people watching, what more do you need? I would love to go to all these places you've mentioned. Have a great week!!

Jennifer Fabulous said...

I agree with Luana above. I am definitely favoriting all these posts so when I visit these towns, I'll know where to go. These coffee posts really are a lifesaver. :)

Oh, and I gave you an award on my blog. Check it out!

Elizabeth Marie said...

ohhh I need to go to the one in Culver City!!

How are you lovey?!

Sarah @ Pandora's Box said...

The Conservatory sounds lovely! Thanks for doing some in LA, I'll have to check these out next time I'm over there.

Mara said...

ooh I'll have to check out some of these coffee spots! Have you ever been to Aroma in Studio City. It's ridiculously popular and crowded on the weekends now but it's a cute neighborhood spot! They're also related to The Alcove in Los Feliz.

Savvy Gal said...

I like to have that cup of coffee with the cutest little face. : )

Christen said...

This post totally makes me want to curl up with a great cup of tea or hot chocolate and a great magazine!

la petite fashionista said...

the conservatory sounds right up my alley! i LOVE your cafe spotlights :)

Jessica said...

Let's just say that I need a cup o' panda. Please and thank you.

Emily said...

Lost Souls Cafe sounds heavenly!!

Fashion Court said...

that panda is too adorable.. i wish i could visit la! ohhh, one day! haha :p

fadetoblack said...

ive never been to LA but its next on my list for sure :)

FashionJazz said...

I so want to go to LA, after reading your post, maybe one day : ) Hope u having a good week! xxx

labelllefille said...

I am so excited that you did an LA post! I will be trying BOTH of these cafes out soon! xo

B a la Moda said...

OH! I am feeling melancholic now. The conservatory was my friend´s Daniela favorite Coffee shop and we used to go there a lot. It was very closed to my how. Tiny but cute and with good coffee. Thanks for putting a smile in me. Did you get the package?

xoxo
B* a la Moda

Stéphanie said...

So great post ! I adoore every pictures !

Nina said...

I wonder when we can have our coffee together?

Cafe Pasadena said...

Thanks Erika for this cafe posting! I gotta try Lost Souls mainly becuz it's closer to Pasadena than CulverCity.

Q: What do you recommend I order from there?

Leah said...

Erika, any of those cafe will do as long as I can have coffee with you. xoxo

Eden said...

thank you so much for dropping by my site love! yeah, too bad the contest is open only to the PI, as i do have readers elsewhere.:( oh and i love your blog! do you mind exchanging links?

<3
eden

Miss Caitlin S. said...

I hope you know what a gifted writer you are. Seriously so wonderful and especially paired with your beautiful hot-drink pictures! :)

Sherin said...

I am dying to go to LA one day! It seem slike such a beautiful place. The Lost Souls Cafe sounds amazing. I would love to see the grungy feel to it.

Inspiration in Italy said...

Lost Souls Café is calling my name with the mention of crepes! :) Loved this post, just so enticing and informative...who can resist cafes such as these? I have been to LA many many times when I lived in SoCal but never did I go to a cafe but now I know where to go!

Hope you are having a great week, Love! xo
Rachel

S.Elisabeth said...

Oh sounds absolutely charming! I must keep this in mind if I ever go to LA (which hopefully I will one day!)

Audrey Allure said...

awesome, and that cup with the panda is so cute!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

Wow, love the selection and the panda face foam - aww!

Sara Lynn said...

what an awesome post! I love that pic of the coffee with the panda face on it :) very cute! I just discovered your blog, and I am going to start following :)

♫♥Oana Roxana♥♫ said...

Yay!'Panda coffee' is ♥ly!

annoiii said...

The panda coffee is very cute!

kirstyb said...

a panda in the cup! thats so cute x

Rachel said...

I've actually never even been to California so it would be lovely to check out either place. But the Vanilla Latte at The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa sounds so delicious!

The Haute-Shopper said...

These sound amazing! The Culver City one would be at the top of my list... the rainforest ambiance sounds lovely! And that Panda latte art is adorable :)

miriam (Björn Borg) said...

loving the theme! i've always wanted to see LA, now i have the perfect reason!

Midtown Girl said...

I will go to whichever one you will take me to - you are the Queen of the Coffee Bean houses, love!!

XOXO

lucy said...

love the panda shape on the top of the coffee, very cute

Join the Gossip said...

As a LA gal myself, I need to check out more cafes! There is so much to explore that I haven't. I am way excited to check out new restaurants this week and next for dineLA!

Lost Souls sounds cool, I think it's probably closer to my neighborhood, since I'm on the LA/WEHO border. It sounds like a Los Feliz or Silverlake type of place =)

Can do mom said...

Mmmmm - sounds yummy but I'm too far away to check them out. It's cold here in WI, I need a hot tea or latte to warm me up!

Thanks for your comments on my blog. I'm a new blogger, just plugging along. Oh, and my girls would tell you that I'm not very fashionable! I used to be but these days practicality seems to win the day...

casual jackets said...

Great post! Really enjoying your blog!

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