A new neighbor opening its doors along sunny North Cahuenga Boulevard in Hollywood brings the sweet, lovingly-addictive scent of hand roasted coffee to the heart of Los Angeles. Introducing Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen; Demitasse’s flagship café boasting house-roasted small batches of ethically-sourced coffee beans, along with an extensive menu of globally-inspired dishes, natural wines, local beers and signature Demitasse Shims beginning Wednesday, February 17th, 2016.
At Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen, everything begins with the coffee bean. From farm to roasting to cup, much love, care and consideration goes into each; from a growing roster of direct trade coffees from Columbia, El Salvador and Guatemala (with more countries and regions to come) to roasting their own beans on their shiny, new Probat, Demitasse is at the forefront of forward thinking in the coffee world. A process established and perpetuated by Owner Bobby Roshan, a former corporate lawyer and coffee lover turned café owner in 2011, when his unyielding passion for java led him to open the first Demitasse in Downtown L.A.’s Little Tokyo, followed by two more café locations in Santa Monica and mid-city on Wilshire Boulevard. Now Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen in Hollywood expands beyond coffee, extending the same passion and detailed focus to food, wine, beer and their new signature shims.
“This is something we have wanted to dip our toes into for quite some time,” says Roshan. “We love this neighborhood and are excited to be in the heart of Hollywood.” A bright and vibrant space with a floor to ceiling glass front that lends way to white marble countertops, red-brick walls and the eye-catching centerpiece of Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen: a gorgeous Probat, where expectedly, all of the roasting is done by hand with love for each location. Another unique fixture that is one-of-a-kind to Los Angeles is a limited edition La Marzocco Mistral espresso machine, which Roshan and his coffee geeks have tinkered with and added modifications to, as one might do to a shiny racecar to streamline until it purrs with perfection. As for a little lounging, there are cushy banquets, a walk-up counter and patio equipped with a full fire pit. They plan on having a slow bar in front of the roaster, soon, too.
Getting to the crux (and cup) of it, Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen, offers a full range of Espresso Drinks and Teas, including a House-Made Chai Tea, four Brewed Coffees each ground and brewed to order on their Curtis Seraphims, Nitro and Kyoto-Style Cold Brew, and their famous Lavender Liquid Hot Chocolate with a torched jumbo marshmallow. And now, the menu moves beyond coffee, adding an extensive list of creative and delicious dishes perfect for pairing from Executive Chef Jeff Lustre. Every season the shop will feature an ingredient that is pervasive throughout the menu. They will start by featuring Blood Oranges – there will be a coffee drink, shim and three dishes that feature the citrus.
“What I love about Chef Jeff is that he is always thinking. It is going to be hard to keep up with him,” laughs Roshan. A partnership that began in 2014, Roshan and Lustre presented a series of Demitasse gastronomic pop-ups, showcasing an array of elegant and refined dishes. Lustre, whose career began under former White House Executive Chef and James Beard Award Winner Frank Ruta at Palena restaurant in Washington D.C., Lustre is a globe-trotter to say the least, honing his skills in China, Southeast Asia, Italy, Spain and Hawaii, before working with Julien Shapiro at Bouchon Charcuterie and further developing his passion for local, seasonal and sustainable cooking.
Lustre’s wide-range of cultural influences can be found in a globally-inspired Dinner Menu with Small Plates, Large Plates, along with Breakfast and Lunch, boasting fresh, locally-sourced ingredients, “You can literally walk out the back door to the Hollywood Famer’s Market and find delicious ingredients,” says Roshan, which he and Lustre intend to do weekly.
Far from your typical coffee-shop selections, the new Demitasse Dinner Menu brings new meaning to café-style dining with intricate Small Plates like the delightful Heart of Palm with beets, Cara Cara orange, an egg steeped in black tea and a Mousseline vinaigrette, along with a Crudo of Hamachi, Ogonori seaweed, Inamona (Roasted kukui nutmeats and sea salt used in classic Hawaiian cooking), crispy bite-sized Japanese crackers of Bubu Arare and avocado. The Purple Yam Gnocchi is served with Mais fonduta, cauliflower and balsamico; the Calabaza is rich and warm with Heirloom pumpkin, farro and pumpkin seed sauce; the Kabocha-Coconut Soup brings briny ocean flavors of sea scallop, sea asparagus and seaweed froth and the Spanish-influenced Octopus comes with Papas bravas, Romensco purée and salsa pimento.
Moving on to the Large Plates, Lustre impresses further with light and hearty dishes alike, starting with the A La Marinera offering of pan-seared cod in a Fisherman-style stew with garbanzo beans and potatoes and the Besugo; a whole red sea bream served with thin pancakes and black garlic. There is a succulent Duck Breast with rainbow beets, sweet potato dauphine and blood orange sauce, Grilled Half Chicken with an Achiote-vinegar glaze, a Niman Ranch Pork Belly accompanied by Jerusalem artichokes, Quince and Adobo sauce, as well as tender Creekstone Farms Beef Cheeks with Mung beans, Beluga lentils and persimmon mushrooms.
As for Breakfast and Lunch, light dishes come in a myriad of unique and tasty bites. Morning nibbles include Sweet Potato Pancakes with whipped yogurt, dates and maple syrup sauce, a Breakfast Sandwich featuring a fried duck egg and Grilled Toast with a choice of Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen General Manager and Artisan jam-maker Laura Ann Masura’s jams, served in farmer’s market fresh flavors Apricot Ginger, Bourbon Blood Orange and Raspberry Habanero. Midday appetites can be appeased with Lunch options like the Fennel Soup with pistachio condiment, blood orange and cremá, an Eggplant Torta with arugula, celery root and a mustard dressing, Creekstone Farms Brisket served with caramelized onions and Chimichurri on a Cemita bun and a sweet snack of Chocolate Con Churros: Madrid style churros with Lavender hot chocolate for dipping.
Shifting into beverages that separate Demitasse Hollywood from its aforementioned coffee-shop counterparts is a curated list of Natural Wines and Local Beers, and for this task, Roshan tapped Wine Consultant Ian Harris. Harris, who is now the General Manager and Wine Director at Seven Beef in Seattle, Washington has worked with the likes of Sommelier Chris Goodhart at Balthazar and Wine Director Lee Campbell at Marlowe’s and Achilles Heel, all in New York, before introducing a natural wines program at the ACE Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. “Natural wines are my passion; wine should taste like where it is made,” says Harris, who preaches that consumers tend to put too much emphasis on varietal, when good wine should always start with the growing practices. And just as Demitasse sources its coffee so ethically, they do the same with the Natural Wines, presenting one Sparkling, three Whites and three Reds that are each procured from organic and sustainable farms, utilizing honorable practices from vine harvesting to bottling.
“With wine, it is very important to start with the guest’s perspective and what they usually drink,” says Harris. “There is no judgment, only validation,” and every single wine is poured as a taste first to find the guest’s needs when it comes to a glass of vino. Current selections range from the French Raphael Bartucci Sparkling Wine produced from Gamay, Poulsard and Chardonnay grapes that tastes like “fresh strawberries” and the jasmine-pear Rein Winery Riesling from Mendocino County to the rich Laurent Habrad Croze Hermitage from Marsanne and the “not your mother’s Malbec,” the Mas del Perie “Escures” Malbec.
From vino to brews, four Local Beer selections include the light and easy Angel City Pilsner, Saint Archer WHITE, Firestone Marlin Milk Stout and Bootlegger’s Brewing Company Far Out IPA that is “nicely balanced and not overly hoppy,” according to Harris.
Taking these libations to a creative level is Cocktail Consultant Marissa Grasmick from Aestus in Santa Monica, whose pedigree also includes time behind the stick at The Varnish craft cocktail lounge in Downtown L.A. “The Signature Demitasse Shim Menu’s footing is in classic culture,” says Grasmick, who uses wine, sake, vermouth and even coffee to create swizzle, julep, and greyhound-like beverages. Take a playful “favorite” of Grasmick’s, The Iggy; an Italian greyhound with Antica vermouth and grapefruit juice poured over ice in a half-rim-salted Collin’s glass. Then there is the fresh and energizing Green Arrow crafted with Dolin blanc, muddled mint and Demitasse Kyoto, topped with honey cream and the Adult Spice Latte with Cardamaro and cinnamon syrup. Herbal notes are showcased in the Blood Orange Sake Swizzle with sake, lime and a rosemary and black pepper garnish, along with the Soju Julep built in a Julep cup with a powdered sugar garnish.
From food to beverages, much will be rotated at Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen, and additional events include Taco Tuesday, along with a myriad of offerings centered around One Monthly Seasonal Ingredient which will be showcased in special coffees, dishes, beers and wine cocktails. As previously mentioned, the February featured ingredient will be Blood Orange.
“From coffee and food to natural wines and local beer, everything is paralleled in value of farming practices, sustainability, ethics and overall love for any product we put forth for our guests,” says Masura. With that passionate sentiment aside, it is very clear that Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen is the new café of its generation. Stop in soon and taste the movement!
Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen is open daily for Breakfast from 7:00 am to 10:30 am, Lunch from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm and Dinner from 5:30 pm to 10:00 pm. For more information or reservations, please visit www.cafedemitasse.com or call Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen directly at 323.498.5155.
For photos of Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen, please visit the Dropbox link below:
Photo Credit: acuna-hansen
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Demitasse Roastery & Kitchen
1542 North Cahuenga Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028
Lawrence Moore & Associates Inc.
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