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La Brea's Shuttered La Boulange Pivoting Into a Starbucks Evenings Concept

Beer, wine, food, and frappuccinos

La Boulange, La Brea
La Boulange, La Brea
Wonho Frank Lee
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.

Remember the short-lived La Boulange on La Brea? It was meant to be a big, shiny stamp in the Los Angeles market for Starbucks, as the company peeled off the second concept as a casual all-day eatery. Unfortunately that didn’t last, and the place has been defunct since last September. That is, until now, as news continues to trickle in that the shuttered restaurant will become … a Starbucks.

Yep, after all that back and forth, it looks as though Starbucks proper will take over the La Boulange building on La Brea (they likely owned it anyway so it was only a matter of time before they sold it off or flipped it). Except, don’t just expect the usual grab and go airport fare — this is a fully-realized restaurant space (kitchen and all) so it seems likely that Starbucks will use that to their advantage.

The first inkling that there may be more at play here than just coffee is this ABC license, activated back in January and pointing to some likely beer and wine sales. That would fall in line with Starbucks’ more recent Evenings initiative, which aims to make the ‘bucks an all-day hangout that serves more fully realized meals plus beer and wine in the evenings. Sounds sorta like the old La Boulange, no?

Tipsters say work is underway inside, though there’s no official timeline for reopening. Either way, it’s nice to see such a beautiful new building get some love once again. It was starting to feel for a moment there like the only options for coffee and pastries along La Brea would be Republique or La Brea Bakery or Sycamore Kitchen or … you get the idea.