The boys at Triniti in Echo Park want to bring you home for a dinner. Well, in this case, it’s a lunch affair, since the cafe-restaurant hybrid only offers food in the afternoon. Your first steps inside this modern goth glam “household” may startle you. You might even think you’ve stepped inside a culinary museum, whose intense splashes of marble, black, and white make you frightened to accidentally knock over their curated shelf of locally made ceramics and books.
However, take a step back and relax.
Breathe in a sigh of comfort at the slushy machines on display, and the humble open kitchen offering a preview of the goods you’re about to inhale at this fast-casual-meets-upscale-dining affair.
“It’s like if we invited you home to a dinner party or a brunch, and we were just cooking and serving food into the dining room. That’s what we wanted it to feel like,” says co-owner David Wynn, a former Cognoscenti barista and native-Angeleno-turned entrepreneur, who opened the space with world chef Joseph Geiskopf (Destroyer, Noma, and Californios to name a few) in the midst of the winter holidays. Its name stems from the team’s three pillars of hospitality—good food, good coffee, and good service.
You probably recognize your “dinner hosts” at Triniti as those new neighbors spotted on the block last summer running a lemonade stand. Well, it was actually that slushy machine, pushed to its limits on a more than 100-degree day at Echo Park Rising, a free neighborhood festival that showcases local music and businesses every year.
Several months later, Wynn and Geiskopf are still keeping the summer slush flowing as part of their greater cafe and restaurant vision—they’ve even incorporated it into their zero waste motto. Triniti strives to be as compost-friendly as possible, from its takeaway cups (provided by Repurpose) to these frosty beverages, which are made from leftover cuts of their own foods. Just think of it as having a fresh-pressed juice, but with more ice thrown in the mix.
Coffee is backed by San Francisco’s Coffee Manufactory, whose rotating single origins fuel a menu of standard espresso-milk drinks and drip coffees, as well as spice-heavy seasonal concoctions like a buttered yam or turmeric Thai latte. Espresso is pulled on a stylish white Mavam and pressed with even more fashionable New Levy tampers from Saint Anthony. This curation of finely presented goods extends naturally to their dishware, which comes from artisanal makers Hasami Porcelain and Miro Made This.
Naturally, the food served on these beautiful dishes is what completes the presentation. With a menu that changes on a weekly basis, plus all pastries and ingredients created in-house, you’re in for whatever they’re in the mood for, really—you’re meant to feel you’re in their (very fancy) home dining room, after all. Whether it be golden beets with jackfruit fresh from the farmer’s market, or an heirloom faro and broccoli bowl, you’ll find it tossed into a myriad of what the gang feels are truly L.A.-inspired dishes.
“Just because L.A. is such a city defined by diversity, I think that’s what we embrace here,” Wynn explains. “I think our dishes kind of represent just the mismatch of what we’re influenced by, places we eat at, places we go, the taco truck down the street or the nice restaurant. I think that’s what L.A. is. It’s a casual, fine, luxury, edgy, independent mismatch.”
With its upscale yet cozy Japanese and Nordic feel, fine coffee from Coffee Manufactory, and even finer food from a seasonal kitchen, you’re in for a treat that extends beyond your usual affair of coffee, waffles, and burritos on Sunset Boulevard.