Elabrew (Hollywood) - CLOSED
One of the most rewarding parts about traveling to all these coffee shops has to be when the baristas actually talk to me about the coffee. Coffee bars tend to physically divide the barista from the customer. On the occasional lucky day, I get to interact more than handing over a credit card and repeating that "yes, my espresso was good" when it's usually not even the case. Elabrew Coffee was one of those lucky days. This quite frankly random and well-designed coffee stand is beneath the CNN Tower on Sunset. There is no indoor seating but instead the coffee hut has a front window to order at and a back window for coffee delivery. I'm not going to lie, this place surprised the hell out of me. Wary of Groundwork Coffee across the street (not my favorite), I was lucky to find that Elabrew carried Heart Roaster's Stereo Espresso: Good sign #1. And then after I ordered an espresso, the barista who handed it to me took the time to explain the roaster and the origin of the beans: Good sign #2. And then I took a sip before I could even think to take a picture. I couldn't imagine the next sips of espresso could be even better or even smoother. I've tried Heart roasters at G&B and if you read my review, you will know that I'm not a fan of the way they pull their espresso. However, this Heart espresso took me by surprise. It was like biting in to a cherry that you think might have a tang of sour but is smooth sweetness: Good sign #3! Even better, half way through drinking it the barista came out from the coffee stand and started talking to me more about the coffee! And he quickly realized my secret identity. He literally called me a coffee junkie. I wholeheartedly approve. Naturally, I had a second espresso: Good sign #4. And with that, I'm sold on Elabrew Coffee.
Recommend: Alex was my barista and he killed it with great espresso! They change up their pour-over coffees way more, so if you want variety, I'd recommend that.
Note: Parking can be a bit difficult and there is no indoor seating. Also, it's more of a coffee-break place than a coffee-study place (although they do have free wi-fi?). So sit down and eat a damn good pastry or cookie... Also, they have a location in Santa Monica that I haven't checked out yet!
Vibe: People on their work break, random Hollywood
Espresso Rating: 9/10
Overall Rating: 9/10
Hours: Mon-Fri 7 am - 6 pm