Highland Park’s Civil Coffee, founded by brothers and Los Angeles natives Alex and Alan Morales, is spreading its wings to the Valley. This Friday, September 23, the industry-beloved purveyor of espresso drinks and cold brew will open its third location at the ever-growing Sportsmen’s Lodge complex in Studio City, which also houses Sugarfish, HiHo Cheeseburger, and a new outpost of Roberta’s. (Civil opened its second location in Downtown LA earlier this year.)
The 900-square-foot space is modeled after Mexico City open-air cafes and is the first Los Angeles Health Department-approved cafe with a coffee bar and kitchen with an operable storefront. There, chef Mezraim Llanez of ER Bar and Chicas Tacos will be heading up a small kitchen serving breakfast burritos made with Mejorado tortillas, brunch sandwiches, and grab-and-go items like turmeric arroz con leche; longtime partner Sugar Bloom Bakery will supply pastries and viennoiserie. In addition to two daily espresso and drip offerings, the outpost will also feature two Valley-exclusive drinks: a matcha tonic featuring ceremonial-grade Japanese matcha, and the Vanilla Oaty, an oat-milk espresso drink shaken over ice.
This Friday through Sunday, Civil Coffee will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Monday, September 26, it will kick off its regular daily hours of 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
A conversation about gentrification
Yesterday, L.A. Taco published a balanced deep-dive into the gentrification of Highland Park and its implications for both longtime residents and business owners. Kamren Curiel writes, “While everyone feels differently about gentrification, depending on their political views and individual privileges, the undeniable problem is that not everyone benefits equally from increased investment and sudden media and developer interest in a neighborhood.”
A Hollywood classic returns
Thrillist brings news of the reopening of Cinegrill at the legendary Hollywood Roosevelt hotel. The Old Hollywood-style theater and restaurant, which originally opened in 1936 and features a supper club-inspired menu of food and classic cocktails, will kick off its new iteration with a screening of Casablanca on September 21.
Keith Corbin chats with Roy Choi
This Thursday, September 22, Alta Adams chef-owner and author of the new memoir California Soul: An American Epic of Cooking and Survival Keith Corbin will sit down for a conversation with acclaimed chef and author Roy Choi at the California African American Museum. RSVP for the event here.
That’s a lot of nachos
This Sunday at Smorgasburg, Paramount+ will attempt to break the world record for the largest plate of nachos to celebrate the return of Mike Judge’s Beavis and Butt-Head to the streaming service. The current Guinness World Record™ stands at 4,689 pounds, set in 2012 by the University of Kansas, while Las Cruces unofficially set the world record for the largest serving of nachos, weighing in at 5,039 pounds and measuring 110 feet long, in 2019.
The Beavis and Butt-Head nacho platter will attempt to break both records and will be made with chips, jalapeños, beans, and cheese. Once the record is broken, nachos will be distributed for free to Smorgasburg attendees — and any nachos not eaten by 4 p.m. will find a home with one of seven partnering organizations that serve the Los Angeles community (LA Mission, Hollywood Food Coalition, Food Finders, My Friend’s Place, Seeds of Hope, The Midnight Mission, and the LAX Food Pantry).