Hi - the NYT had an article on artisinal coffee (link below) today and I was wondering if there were any places in Los Angeles that made coffee in a similar style (where the barista controls the roasting of the beans, water temperature, tamping, etc. rather than leaving it to the machine). Thanks!
donny at SABOR Y CULTURA(hollywood blvd. at wilton) pulls the most unbelieveable shot and does beautiful latte art. he placed somewhere around 15th in his 1st regional barista championship. he doesn't roast, but knows his roasters well. we do our own at home too and can't figure out how he does it so well. you can get another barista at this joint, same milk, same beans, same machine...different latte. right now i think her works until the mid-afternoons everyday except fri. we come from PAS, my sis from LB, and my dad from DT all for his espresso.
also, PAZZO GELATO pulls a very good shot using Intelligensia from chi-town. i think it's the only l.a. outlet for the beans. we're there usually at the end of the day and end up getting a macchiatto. this is where we usually buy beans. never seen latte art here.
COFFEE KLATCH in san dimas and rancho cucamonga roasts and makes very good lattes. heather perry is a repeating world champ (first woman, first american i think) and is the lead trainer here. never had a latte by her here. her dad is the owner/roaster and just got some great accolades for heather's competition beans, bella kara or belle espresso. we buy this when we're out that way, which is not very often.
concur wholeheartedly about caffe luxxe. here's the website: http://caffeluxxe.com/
BTW, they have 2 of the synesso cyncra machines mentioned in the NYT article. they don't roast their own at this time, but there are plans to do so.
another good choice for espresso is the euro caffe on little santa monica in beverly hills (across from the sharper image). they use danesi beans.