July 7, 2009

Frothy What?

Every weekday morning I drive to Santa Monica, get to work, turn on my light and go down the hall to brew up some coffee. I add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the grounds and then turn on the milk steamer. When it whistles, I steam up some milk and wait until I have a good foam. Then I pour a cup of coffee, add the steamed milk and top it with the froth, a spoonful of sugar and some more cinnamon (love it). But come Saturday, I'm stuck. My setup is gone. There's no coffee maker next to an espresso maker on my home counter. No Breakfast Blend or Mocha Java. There is simply the (cute) lone French press and a half gallon of milk in the fridge. Sure, I could head down to Starbuck's and order up the concoction, but then I'd be that girl; the-brewed-coffee-(not burnt please)-with-a-dash-of-cinnamon-a-teaspoon-of-sugar-1/3-steamed-milk-and-froth-on-top-girl. I realize there are more difficult people, but if there was just a name for even brewed coffee with frothed milk I would seem less ridiculous. Think I'm kidding? Let's discuss.

Traditionally, a café au lait is coffee or espresso (depending on what side of the pond you're on) with steamed milk. A cappuccino is espresso and hot milk topped with milk froth. A latte is 1/3 espresso and 2/3 steamed milk with maybe a bit of foam (if you aren't at the typical factory coffee establishment). So where does this leave the coffee with foamed milk drinkers? S.O.L. is where. But on Thursday, in my attempt to fix this problem, I posed a question to friends. What do we call it?

I only got one answer. Frofee. Thanks Arash!!

By Sunday, I was ready. Breakfast at Blu Jam Cafe. Fire it up. I ordered Blu Toast (French toast with blackberry jam, cream cheese, bananas and powdered sugar...yay carbs!) and then I said it: so, I was hoping to get a cup of coffee with some steamed milk topped with maybe...1/3 foam? She looks at me.

"OK. No problem."

That was easy. A few minutes later, the friendly coffee guy brings out the cup o' froth.

"Here's your Cappulatte or your Cappulait. . . no, maybe you should call it a Coffoamie. Here's your Coffoamie!"

Nice. Whatever it was, it was perfecto. I mean this guy pretty much was born to make foam. It was sweet and airy and the stuff that CoffeeGeek would be proud of. The coffee was also perfectly brewed with no bitterness. Amazing. With that, I left resolved to order my Coffoamie wherever I go. Call me weird, but if you ever get to Blu Jam you'll call nameless coffee guy a genius--with whatever you order.

Until then, below are some coffee places in L.A. that are worth skipping Coffee Bean for:

Silverlake/Echo Park/Eagle Rock/Atwater Village

Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea
323.663.6173
3922 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, 900

Sanjang Coffee Garden
213.387.9190
101 S. Virgil Avenue
Los Angeles, 90004

323.664.8248
1523 Griffith Park Blvd.
Los Angeles, 90026

323.906.8904
2106 Hyperion Ave
Los Angeles, 90027

Silverlake Coffee Company
323.913.0388
2388 Glendale Blvd., Suite B
Los Angeles, 90039

323.284.8962
2100 Echo Park Avenue
Los Angeles, 90026

Kaldi Coffee & Tea
323.660.6005
3147 GlendaleBlvd.
Los Angeles, 90039

323.258.8278
4126 Verdugo Road
Los Angeles, 90065

323.258.5600
2160 Colorado Blvd
Los Angeles, 90041

Mid-City/Hollywood/West Hollywood/Downtown

Black Dog Coffee
323.933.1976
5657 Wilshire Blvd Ste 150
Los Angeles, 90036

Massimo's Mudspot
323.936.1721
759 S La Brea Ave
Los Angeles, 90036

Stir Crazy Coffee Shop
323.934.4656
6903 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, 90038

Groundwork
(multiple locations)
323.871.0107
1501 Cahuenga Blvd
Los Angeles, 90028

Tiago Espresso Bar + Kitchen
323.466.5600
7080 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, 90028

Caffe Etc.
323.464.8824
6371 Selma AveLos Angeles, 90028

Cafe Audrey
323.465.5539
6701 Hollywood Blvd, Suite B
Los Angeles, 90028

Lost Souls Cafe
213.617.7006
Harlem Place Alley
124 W 4th Street
Los Angeles, 90013

Culver City/Santa Monica/Venice

The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea & Cocoa
310.558.0436
10117 Washington Blvd
Culver City, 90232

Teaforest Tea + Coffee Bar
310.815.1723
8686 Washington Blvd.
Culver City, 90232

Funnel Mill Rare Coffee & Tea
310.597.4395
930 Broadway, Suite A
Santa Monica, 90401

Bolivar Cafe & Gallery
310.581.2344
1741 Ocean Park Blvd
Santa Monica, 90405

Caffe Luxxe
310.394.2222
925 Montana Ave
Santa Monica, 90403

The Rumor Mill
310.397.5400
1739 W. Washington Blvd.
Los Angeles, 9066

The Cow's End Cafe
310.574.1080
34 Washington Blvd.
Venice Beach, 90292

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