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Roy Choi Revives 3 Worlds Cafe With Surprise New Location in Watts

And you’ll never guess the address

The upcoming location for 3 Worlds Cafe, Watts
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Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

One of Roy Choi’s least-heralded concepts, but arguably among its most important, is 3 Worlds Cafe, another in a line of do-good enterprises for the Kogi BBQ founder. Now he’s relaunching the brand nearly next door to arguably his biggest current project: LocoL in Watts.

Originally envisioned as a coffee and smoothie shop run with a bit of corporate backing and operated by at-risk students from a nearby high school, the first 3 Worlds Cafe spent a few years on Central Avenue just south of Downtown. Ultimately that location shuttered, with Choi moving the menu into the food truck space to continue serving his signature Dole whips and boba.

Choi first hinted on his Instagram feed at the new opening inside a former nutrition store on E. 103rd Street. That puts 3 Worlds Cafe just a few doors down from the corner address of LocoL, his fast food-defining restaurant run in partnership with Daniel Patterson. Together, the pair of projects should help to further shine a light on Watts, its food needs, and Choi’s commitment to giving the neighborhood what it wants in a way that works for everyone.

As of this morning, the 3 Worlds Cafe Facebook page has been updated to show the new address, with a loose reopening date scheduled for January. While Choi has previously called this the “2.0” version of 3 Worlds Cafe, it’s safe to expect at least some of the same menu items as before, including those smoothies. As for coffee, that’s still to be decided, considering nearby LocoL already offers inexpensive brew for customers. More on this as it comes.

3 Worlds Cafe
1924 E. 103rd St.
Watts, CA