Japan knows their coffee. Thankfully, Cafe Dulce in the heart of Little Tokyo is a testament to this. Although it's a bit hidden in the pagodas of the Japanese Village Plaza Mall, it's worth finding. Cafe Dulce is probably the only place I've encountered in Los Angeles that carries MadCap Coffee out of Grand Rapids, Michigan, in addition to Verve, and Stumptown. Their menu offers a wide variety for everyone from coffee connoisseurs (with a variety of pour-overs) to people with a sweet tooth (Vietnamese Iced Coffee, Hong Kong Style Milk tea, Masala Chai, Green Tea Latte, etc.). Even more crazy are their selection of pastries--with maple bacon donuts and different flavored rotis. And I haven't even gotten to their espresso! I went in the morning of July 4 and they actually told me that they were using a blend of Costa Rican and Colombian from a friend's company called Andante. Served with sparkling water (finally! people have really stopped doing this these days), my Andante espresso had awesome notes of fruity strawberry and a bit chocolatey--and although most espressos will be either chocolatey or fruity, this one tasted quite unexpected and flavorful. Even better, the barista who served it to me voluntarily started telling me about the espresso and asked me to tell him what I thought. How refreshing! The baristas were not pretentious or snobby and just really love coffee. Overall, this place is fantastic and cute and has great coffee. And even if they took away all their fancy shmansy donuts and cute logo, I would still love the place for their quality and friendliness. Go here!
Recommend: Walk around Little Tokyo if you haven't been! It's right north of Downtown LA (basically Downtown LA I guess) and even get a fruity pebbles donut!
Note: Cafe Dulce also has a Popup Shop!! I can't wait to try it out but in the meantime the address is 777 Alameda!
Espresso Rating: 8.5/10-- I have returned recently (as of Aug 20) and their espresso quality has declined :(
Overall Rating: 9/10
Hours: Mon-Sun 8am-10pm