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Non-Starbucks coffee joint in Hollywood?

I'm looking for a quiet cafe or coffeeshop in the Santa Monica/Highland area that is not Starbucks or Coffee Bean. Someplace like the Alcove Cafe on Hillhurst would be ideal, if it were closer to that area. Anyone have any suggestions?

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  1. Definitely not quiet, but I love Urth Caffe's spanish latte and organic teas.....

    Great breakfast and lunch items as well as baked goods too

    1. There was a place I once stopped in for coffee after going to the Hollywood Farmer's Market one Sunday. It was very close to the market, and I think it was near Amoeba because I know I stopped in there after picking up coffee. I really liked it, and there seemed to be several people just chilling inside reading a book or working on their lap tops. I wish I remembered the name of the place. I think it was on Sunset and Cahuenga.

      3 Replies
      1. re: avena

        I looked up the place I was thinking of, and I think it is Groundwork Coffee Co.

        1501 N. Cahuenga Blvd

        1. re: avena

          Also, up the block on Cahuenga are two more non-chain coffeehouses.

          Caffe Latte
          Karma Coffeehouse

          1. re: SauceSupreme

            I keep calling it Caffe Latte, It's Caffe Etc.

            Karma Coffeehouse
            1544 N Cahuenga Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

            Caffe Etc
            6371 Selma Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90028

            Groundwork Coffee Company
            1501 N Cahuenga Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

      2. Sabor y Cultura on Hollywood & Gramercy, north west corner.

        Sabor Y Cultura
        5625 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028

        1. Few of these kind of places have a full menu as does the Alcove.

          In addition to the places listed upthread, there's the Green Room on Hollywood Blvd. near the Egyptian, and the Bourgeois Pig on Franklin in the Bronson Village (which can get ... boisterous ... on Friday and Saturday nights).

          3 Replies
          1. re: maxzook

            I'm usually all for boisterous, but this is for a tame and boring business meeting in the afternoon...

            1. re: thegingerbreadgirl

              Bourgeois Pig is pretty mellow in the afternoon, and it has really big tables in the front room. On the down side, the parking sucks and it's pretty dark for a business meeting.

              I think your best bets are either the Karma or the Green Room.

            2. re: maxzook

              Haven't been to the Pig in awhile, but it used to use Illy beans, which are my absolute favorite. I studied for the bar exam there, so I can definitely say that you can conduct afternoon business without it being overly boisterous.

            3. Above are all good -- especially Sabor y Cultura and Bourgeois Pig -- with the exception of Groundworks. PAINFULLY bad service. (I think the staff gets paid in heroin.) But none of them are that close to Santa Monica & Highland.

              Stir Crazy on Melrose just west of Highland would be the best closer bet for an indie coffee hang.

              And the new Doughboys on Highland might be a good alternative to Alcove-style food.

              Stir Crazy Coffee Shop
              6903 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

              Doughboys Bakery
              1156 N Highland Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038

              1 Reply
              1. re: wutzizname

                Two more options which might be better for the mid-day meeting, both a little further west on Beverly:

                Susina (great coffee and bakery, not so great sandwiches and salads)


                Insomnia Cafe
                7286 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

                Susina Bakery & Cafe
                7122 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

              2. Groundwork is fantastic. I go there almost every day. Really good quality coffee and close to Amoeba / ArcLight, which is a plus for me.

                The staff is very friendly. They often start my drink as soon as they see me coming.

                1 Reply
                1. re: bsquared2

                  To be fair, it's been about a year since I gave up on that place, so perhaps there's been some improvement. But in the year and a half that I tried to like the place, wanted to like the place, desperately wished the not-Starbucks place with the casual atmosphere and free wi-fi right by my house would be a great coffee shop to frequent every day, I consistently met with the most laughable, over-the-top bad service of my life. Three or four hipsters behind the counter and no one ever paying attention to anyone or anything. And the crack about the heroin was only half a joke. On two occasions I saw different dudes with loose fitting bandages back there handling stuff in a most unsavory way. The first time I let it slide. The second, I emailed the owner and never went back.

                2. Not many respondents are paying attention to the OP -- he's looking for Santa Monica/Highland, not Gramercy, Bronson, Cahuenga, etc.

                  Beverly Blvd????

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Muskrat

                    SHE (for those who ARE paying attention) has already heard about virtually every option close to the requested location, which unfortunately are few.

                    Since nothing seems to quite fit all her needs right there, it would seem appropriate to mention places slightly farther out that might make a better choice for her.

                    Susina on Beverly is 1.3 miles from the intersection of Santa Monica & Highland which, other than Stir Crazy (which I already suggested but which does not serve food), is about how far she may need to go -- if atmosphere is as important as location.

                    1. re: wutzizname

                      Ha - thank you for setting that straight. I might try Stir Crazy, as food isn't a necessity for this meeting. But there are plenty of good suggestions I think I'll have to check out on my own another time!

                      1. re: thegingerbreadgirl

                        Stir Crazy's okay, but it ain't no Alcove. That suggestion came before you mentioned the business meeting hook. It's a little on the BoHo side (as is Karma) so depending on the nature of your business it may not be as "presentable" as you'd like. It's also very intimate so a business meeting there might effectively include everyone in the place, which is usually 4 or 5 solo dudes with laptops. There are a couple tables on the sidewalk which might ironically give you a little more privacy.

                  2. Didn't see Kings Road Cafe on here. More of a lunch place, but the coffee is among the best in the city.

                    1. Not far from that area is Cafe Verona (2nd and LaBrea), which is busy on weekends but quiet on weekday afternoons. I've had business meetings there a few times; nice outdoor patio, as well as a screened-in outdoor seating area.

                        1. re: Woolsey

                          Lift just opened at the corner of Hollywood Blvd and Hudson. Its on the east corner of a "pink" newly renovated shishi apartment building. Its actually quite good, save a few newly open type glitches. It serves Graffeo coffee, which is super duper and croissants and such. I went there first day and was glad to have another addition other than Starbucks, Coffee Bean to the neighborhood. Yippee! Lift, 6531 Hollywood Boulevard, at North Hudson Street, Hollywood (323-469-1848