— PASADENA —
What more could you want? The folks behind Chibiscus in Hollywood bring us Again Cafe in Pasadena, and they've combined their ramen with coffee. But not at the same: during the day, it's a good spot to sit down with your book/laptop with an espresso and plate of curry and rice (or a charcoal waffle, if you're into that sort of thing). In the evening, it's all ramen and baos. Coffee during the day, noodles at night, there's an awesome sketch of a dog on the wall. What more could you want?
132 W. Green Street | Coffee: Hidden House Coffee Roasters
To eat: Pastries, charcoal waffles, salads, the occasional curry and rice
Also try: The Japanese plum soda
This spot near PCC offers up a good selection of coffee, including a variety of lattes (matcha, red velvet, etc) and hot chocolate, sometimes topped with bears and other super cute latte art.
101 S Madison Avenue | Coffee: Four Barrel
To eat: Avocado toast, pastries
Also try: The military latte
This is a big, beautiful coffee shop just off of the main drag that is Colorado Boulevard in Old Pasadena, big enough, really, to practically be two shops in one. The main area of the cafe is painted white, with huge windows that let in swaths of sunlight; follow the counter around the corner to the next room and the space becomes a little darker, a little more rustic, a little more intimate. The main counter in this room is a slow bar where a special menu of coffee drinks is available on select nights. It's an ambitious space, and the quality of the coffee matches the ambition. Copa Vida also makes great pots of tea via its Alpha Dominche machine, that steampunkish contraption on the main counter.
70 S. Raymond Avenue | Coffee: Copa Vida
To eat: Doughnuts from DonutSnob, housemade sandwiches and salads
TWO KIDS COFFEE
A small shop inside SPACE Arts Center in South Pasadena, Two Kids is a nice spot with all the coffee shop standards. It's an especially convenient place to grab a cup if you're on your way to or from the 110; if you have more time, there are a few stools at the small counter, or take your coffee for a walk around the gallery.
1504 Mission St. | Coffee: Gotham Coffee Roasters
The largest Intelligentsia outpost in L.A., this one is a cafe serving not only coffee, but craft brews and wine, too.
55 E. Colorado Boulevard | Coffee: Intelligentsia Coffee
JONES COFFEE ROASTERS
A much-loved shop among many longtime Pasadena residents, Jones Coffee Roasters has been roasting and selling its coffee in the area since 1994. Coffee is sourced from the family's farm in Guatemala.
693 S. Raymond Avenue | Coffee: Jones Coffee Roasters
— ALTADENA —
CAFE DE LECHE
Cafe de Leche's second location in Altadena is not too far from its first in Highland Park. Decked out in nifty blue tile, this outpost is smaller than the first, with a few seats inside and a few more tables and seats outside. The menu is pretty much the same, meaning, yes, there are horchata lattes here, plus your usual espresso and drip standards.
2477 Lake Ave. | Coffee: Stumptown Coffee Roasters
To eat: Pastries
Nearby eats: Roma Deli
— SAN GABRIEL VALLEY —
Until recently, your best bet for coffee in the Arcadia area of the San Gabriel Valley has been limited to the excellent ca phe sua da (Vietnamese iced coffee) at Fresh Roast; sometimes, though, it's just a simple, no-frills cappuccino that you need. Enter Taza, billed as "A Social Coffee House," not far from Din Tai Fung, which is as interested in making good coffee as you are in finding it. Note that as of August 2016, Taza, which was originally housed in a small shop on Huntington, hsa moved across the street to the Rusnak Mercedes lot. A little fuel while you'e shopping for your next Benz, yes?
101 N. Santa Anita Ave., Arcadia (park on Morlan) | Coffee: Taza
To eat: House waffles, Fosselman's ice cream
Nearby eats: Din Tai Fung, 101 Noodle Express
In the space formerly occupied by Regent Coffee is Cafe Floret, which, as the name suggests, combines coffee and flowers. Sometimes in the same cup (rose lattes), sometimes not -- in fact, the menu is fairly similar what Regent Coffee offered here, with sea salt mochas, various matcha options and a line-up of various types of cold brews. Fruit sodas and smoothies are also available.
1841 S. San Gabriel Blvd., San Gabriel | Coffee: Regent Coffee
To eat: Pastries
Nearby eats: Pho Filet
As the name suggests, you'll find freshly (dark) roasted coffee here. It's not hard to find great Vietnamese coffee (iced or hot) in the San Gabriel Valley, but there's a reason why quite a few folks always end up here when the craving strikes.
308 S. San Gabriel Boulevard | Coffee: Fresh Roast
Nearby eats: Golden Deli, Hui Tou Xiang Noodles