Though Blue Bottle Coffee made a big statement by acquiring two native L.A. companies in Handsome and Tonx, they decided to ease into their first original location here in Venice, with a 650 square foot espresso bar right on Abbot Kinney. Opened earlier this week to eager fans of the Bay Area brand, converged on the slick little storefront designed by Jensen Architects. In addition, Tekamaki installed a unique video display (they've done stuff with James Turrell), with 1700 LED pixels showing blue colors right now to reflect Venice's vicinity to the ocean. Eventually the colors will change with the seasons.
As for the countertops, find smooth big leaf maple wood salvaged from one tree in Washington state. Sitting on said counter, a state of the art Kees van der Westen espresso machine (the Spirit model) that's a bit like the Lamborghini of the coffee world. Since founder James Freeman's a fan of the old-school level machines, van der Westen installed that component, which allows variable steam pressure.
As for the wares, plenty of true Blue Bottle Coffee, along with pastries from FarmShop and signature Blue Bottle cookies. Think hand drip coffee, espresso drinks galore, and of course, that delectable New Orleans iced coffee with some chicory mixed in. The house espresso here will be Dandy, a blend derived from the old Handsome coffee, while almond milk comes from Almond Milk LA.
Blue Bottle Coffee
1103 Abbot Kinney Blvd
Venice, CA 90291
7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
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