It’s time to spring forward and get caffeinated (thanks a lot, Daylight Saving)

Spring forward with Daylight Saving Time! Or, if you’re more like me, shuffle forward towards the inevitable griping as we all lose an hour of sleep this Sunday. The morning after DST might be tough, but you can put a little pep back into your step by staying well caffeinated at these fantastic, vetted-by-yours-truly transit-accessible tea and coffee shops.

Note: I didn’t include Starbucks or Coffee Bean because well, they’re pretty much everywhere. And I skipped Intelligentsia on purpose because I just don’t like it that much. (Fight me if you feel otherwise.) But if there are any other places you think I should include on the list, let me know in the comments!

Groundwork Coffee

I won’t get too much into detail with Groundwork since this location was covered pretty extensively.

Hwa Sun Ji Tea & Coffee

Why I like it: A traditional tea house in Koreatown! It’s cute, it’s quiet and they also serve traditional Korean tea snacks. They have a good tea selection, and okay, they also serve desserts (bingsoo!). Don’t go here if you’re in a hurry though, this is a place for taking your time and relaxing.

How to get there: Take the Purple Line to Wilshire/Western Station or Metro Bus 20 to Wilshire/Wilton.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Gong Cha

Why I like it: They have really, really good milk tea. I’m a big fan of the Earl Grey Milk Tea and Panda Milk Tea, which features white pearl boba, whatever that is. (It’s tasty.)

How to get there: Take the Purple Line or Metro Rapid 720 to Wilshire/Western Station.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Document Coffee Bar

Why I like it: They put maple syrup in their coffee, and it’s pretty darn good coffee. The space is industrial chic, which I like. And best of all if you show your TAP card you get 10 percent off your drink. (Good, because maple syrup isn’t cheap.)

How to get there: Take the Purple Line to Wilshire/Western Station or Metro Bus 20 to Wilshire/Saint Andrews.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Haus by Coffee Hunter

Why I like it: The Dutch cold brew is a winner! They also have a long list of coffees from various origins just to make life hard for those who have difficulty deciding things. The space is nice, but the seating isn’t as comfy as it could be. The benches are kind of an awkward height in relation to the tables. But hey, that’s why to-go was invented.

How to get there: Take the Purple Line to Wilshire/Western Station or Metro Bus 20 to Wilshire/Serrano.

Yelp: 3.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Barista Society

barista

Why I like it: I really, really, really, like the mocha. The Casanova Latte is also good, especially if you like condensed milk. And your TAP card gets you 10% off your drink.

How to get there: It’s in the East Portal at Union Station — just steps from the Patsouras Transit Plaza — and also well served by the Red, Purple and Gold lines and multiple buses.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Philz Coffee

philz

Why I like it: I thought the iced mint mojito coffee would not live up to the hype and I was wrong. I’m also a big fan of the Tantalizing Turkish. I’m not a huge fan of their ordering process — it’s kind of confusing to me — but it’s a small price to pay for iced mint mojito coffeeeeeeeeeee.

How to get there: The DTLA location is walkable from 7th Street/Metro Center, or take Metro Bus 66 to 8th/Grand. The Santa Monica location can be reached via the Expo Line Downtown Santa Monica Sation, the Big Blue Bus or Metro Rapid 704 to Santa Monica/4th.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Copa Vida

copa vida

Why I like it: To be honest, I don’t like their coffee that much. It’s average (to me). But quite a few of my colleagues have strong feelings about it, so I consider this a shoutout to their tastes. One colleague also likes to perform a facewash with their chorizo egg hash on a frequent basis.

How to get there: It’s walkable from the Gold Line Del Mar Station, or take Metro Bus 256 to Raymond/Green.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Home Brewed Bar

home brewed

Why I like it: I like this place because they like me. (Ain’t that the way of the world?) But seriously, their staff is super friendly so it feels good when you visit. I am also a fan of the pistachio latte, chocolate peanut butter latte and the cold brew.

How to get there: Take the Gold Line to Memorial Park Station.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Bird Pick Tea and Herb

bird pick

Why I like it: One of my default places to visit if I’m craving tea I don’t have in my own overflowing tea cupboard. The fusion tea drinks are good because they don’t leave a weird residue in my mouth. (You know what I mean, that sticky taste from artificial syrups and drink mixes.) I’m particularly fond of the Tropical Sunrise, and the shop also has lots of beautiful tea accessories perfect for gifting the tea lover in your life (or for gifting yourself).

How to get there: Take the Gold Line to Memorial Park Station or Metro Bus 180 to Colorado/De Lacey. You can also get to their store at the Westfield Arcadia via a bus transfer from the Gold Line Arcadia Station.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Kindness & Mischief  Coffee

Why I like it: They have great coffee but also their cups are really cute. I know, I’m shallow. It’s okay.

How to get there: Take the Gold Line to Highland Park Station.

Yelp: 4.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

G&B Coffee

G&B

The fizzy hoppy tea.

Why I like it: A confession: since their prices went up I’ve been frequenting it less because a person has to draw the line somewhere. But as an occasional treat, I still visit for the fizzy hoppy tea and almond macadamia cappuccino. And if you want to spend the next four hours doing the jitter-bug, drink an entire G&B shake. Accept my challenge. Join me at my level. 😉

How to get there: Take the Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square Station and exit towards 4th Street, or use Metro Bike Share. G&B anchors one end of Grand Central Market.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Demitasse

Why I like it: They have weird special drinks that are really good. I’m partial to anything with black sesame and they offer toasted marshmallows with their sipping chocolate. Plus, look how fancy the cold brew is.

How to get there: Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station, or take the DASH A, Metro Bus 30 or 40 to 1st/San Pedro. There are also locations on Wilshire Boulevard, accessible via Metro Bus 20, and in Santa Monica near Downtown Santa Monica Station.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Chado Tea Room

Why I like it: One of the tea rooms I really enjoy going to. They have an extensive selection of teas — the milk oolong is fantastic and I’m pretty sure there’s no milk in it, yet it tastes like milky tea??? And their tea sandwiches are good.

How to get there: For the DTLA location, take the Metro Gold Line to Little Tokyo/Arts District Station, take the DASH A, Metro Bus 30 or 40 to 1st/San Pedro, or use Metro Bike Share. For the Pasadena location, take the Gold Line to Memorial Park Station or Foothill Transit Bus 187 to Raymond/Union. For the Hollywood location, take the Red Line, Metro Bus 212 or 217 to Hollywood/Highland Station.

Yelp: 3.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Tilt Coffee Bar

A post shared by 安nna (@annanotation) on

Why I like it: One review called it a “coffee hobbit hole” and described like that, who wouldn’t want to visit? Both of their signature drinks, the cloud latte and cloud mocha, are insanely good and made with Grade A maple syrup.

How to get there: Take the Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square Station, or use Metro Bike Share. You can also take DASH D or Metro Rapid 733 to Main/4th.

Yelp: 5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Blue Bottle Coffee

blue bottle

Why I like it: Actually, I don’t. Gasp and shock! I think their coffee is a little bit sour and honestly doesn’t meet the hype. But, I also know lots of people would disagree. So here are directions on how to get there, drink and judge for yourself!

How to get there: For the Arts District location, take Metro Bus 18 to 6th/Mateo or use Metro Bike Share. For the DTLA location near Grand Central Market, take the Red/Purple Line to Pershing Square Station or Rapid 745 to Broadway/3rd. For the Echo Park location, take Metro Rapid 704 to Sunset/Echo Park.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Verve Coffee Roasters

Why I like it: The super spacious cafe offers excellent music with lots of seating for you and friends, yet they are able to create a vibe that feels very personal as well. Exceptional quality espresso that’s especially good with almond milk.

How to get there: For the DTLA location, take the Red or Purple Line to Pershing Square Station or use Metro Bike Share. For the Beverly Grove location take Metro Bus 16/17/316 or 218 to 3rd Street/Crescent Heights.

Yelp: 4 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 


Caffe Vita
 

Why I like it: If you’re looking for a place to caffeinate, have I got the cafe for you: Silver Lake’s hottest coffee bar is Caffe Vita. As Stefon might say, it’s got just everything. Coffee, milk foam, non-dairy milk alternatives. The coffee is so good you’ll feel all warm and roasted inside after drinking — just like how they roast their own beans. And Caffe Vita doesn’t have much of a food menu, which tells you how serious they are about their coffee.

How to get there: Take the DASH Los Feliz or Metro Bus 2/302 to Sunset/Virgil.

Yelp: 3.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

LAMILL

Why I like it: The other super hip spot in Silver Lake. They have créme brùlée cappuccino and if you hate it then we can’t be friends. I also enjoy their teas. It’s not exactly what I go there for, but it’s nice to have the option. (And DO get the maple espresso donut.)

How to get there: Take Metro Bus 201 to Silver Lake/Effie.

Yelp: 3.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

Alfred Coffee

Why I like it: Alfred’s a cute neighborly coffee shop that is aesthetically pleasing. It’s colorful, Instagrammable and has fun coffee sleeves for you to choose from. The lattes have a strong kick to help you conquer the day, which is why they’ve coined the term, “but first, coffee.”

How to get there: Take Metro Bus 2/302 or 4 to Sunset/Micheltorena.

Yelp: 3.5 out of 5 stars (reviews)

 

 

All photos, unless otherwise noted, were taken by Anna Chen/Metro.

4 replies

  1. There’s a new one that opened just last month in downtown Santa Monica. Espresso Cielo is now at 1431 2nd St, on the lower level of parking structure 6, not quite 4 blocks’ walking distance from the DTSM Expo Line station. This is in addition to their older location on Main St. at the corner of Marine, right next to the border with Venice, which is accessible by whatever buses go down that street.

  2. Great piece! Out of the 20 coffee shops, I love Alfred Cafe, Copa Vida, Caffe Vita, Cafe Demitasse, and Home Brewed Bar. There’s also this coffee shop I love called Paper or Plastik Cafe in Picfair Village. You can take Metro Lines 217/780 or Santa Monica Big Blue Bus Lines 7/Rapid 7 to Pico/Fairfax. In addition, Philz Coffee has a location in Downtown Glendale. You can take Metro Lines 92/183 to Brand/Colorado, or Lines 180/181/780 to Central/Colorado. 🙂