Demitasse was in the LA coffee game long before the city’s coffee scene exploded. Its first location in Little Tokyo opened a little over five years ago and is still the go-to destination for coffee aficionados in the area. Now, Demitasse has four locations spread all over the Greater LA area. The newest location is in West Hollywood—unlike the other more off-the-grid shops, this Demitasse sits on Santa Monica Boulevard, right in the heart of it all.
What’s surprising about Demitasse WeHo is that it was in the works for almost two years before finally opening in early March. Demitasse founder Bobby Roshan had been keeping his eye on the location, in part for the neighborhood’s welcoming feel. “Everyone is super friendly and really cares about the community,” Roshan says. “It’s great to be a part of that. It’s also a community that emphasizes acceptance and openness, two things I feel like the specialty coffee community embraces as well.”
There are a few other specialty coffee spots nearby, but Demitasse offers more than what you’ll find anywhere else. For one, indoor seating. Ample space can be found around and behind the coffee bar for a patron looking to get some work done. If you’ve been to any of the other Demitasse locations, you’ll know they’re all designed differently. For WeHo, Roshan worked with Kelly Architects to create a seated bar in front of the siphons. The WeHo cafe also features a large mural on one of its walls. It’s a pretty eye-catching piece by LA artist Greg “Craola” Simkins—a surreal, steampunk-type artwork filled with various fantastical creatures. Roshan is a big fan of Craola’s work. “The rest of the space is light and airy, but that mural is definitely the design centerpiece and in a way contrasts with the rest of the space,” Roshan says.
The other fun factor is that every Demitasse cafe features unique drinks. Depending on which barista is on the bar, each one has its own creative take on either tea, coffee, or both. On the day I visited, the signature barista drink was the Rise Above—a ginger and carrot juice shot with espresso layered on top. Every Demitasse cafe has a different drink each day, but the WeHo location is the only one with a shrub on tap. It’s a strawberry-rose pomegranate shrub created by the manager of the cafe, Brantly Irakleianos. The fizzy, tart drink is perfect for hot days or when you’ve hit your caffeine overload.
“We’re brewing coffee in three ways,” Roshan says of the new location. “Batch brew on a Curtis, siphoning coffee on our halogen-light siphon bar, and Kalita pour-over. We also got an under-counter Mavam espresso machine.” Other options include Kyoto iced coffee and nitro cold brew on tap, as well as both sweet and savory Sugarbloom Bakery snacks.
The prime location of Demitasse WeHo will no doubt attract local foot traffic. The fact that Roshan is working with local businesses is also something to look forward to.
“So many plans,” Roshan says. “We definitely want to do a slow bar. We also are reaching out to folks for collaborations and pop-ups. We just hosted Good Gravy Bakes downtown and we’ll be sure to bring them in and others at this location, too. We are looking for some really talented chefs to do a takeover, as well, which would be a lot of fun.” For a neighborhood that values community, West Hollywood has a great new addition with Demitasse.
Tatiana Ernst (@TatianaErnst) is a Sprudge staff writer based in Los Angeles. Read more Tatiana Ernst on Sprudge.