Food

A Soho Café With Some Serious California Vibes

west~bourne Is Doing Tacos, Wine and Healthy Bowls for a Cause

By Ilana Dadras ·
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Photo: Oleg March

There are a lot of things we like about LA.

Being able to stand outside without your face hurting. The dearth of bomb cyclones. An excess of healthy-and-also-really-good lunch options. Other things, surely.

But to that last point, here's west~bourne: a friendly neighborhood café that's downright excelling at being California-inspired (you'll see why below), right down to the refusal to use caps. It's opening Wednesday in Soho. 

In the bright, wood-filled room, hanging in that front corner nook full of pillows is a good place to find yourself. Counter Culture latte or West~bucha (a bright green celery soda-meets-kombucha mocktail) in front of you. (New year, new you?) Maybe flipping through a magazine. Maybe talking to a health-conscious somebody who is definitely going to be frequenting this place for the coconut chia pudding with raspberries and toasted almond crumble.

Right, so, food-wise, it's the most Gjelina/Urth Caffé /[Insert other LA staple here]-esque spot in town. Whether you stop in at 8am or 9pm, you've got the same options of blackberry jam-crème fraîche-topped buckwheat waffles, onion-pepper-potato hash tacos, chopped salad with sheep's milk feta and charred scallions. The Trails sandwich is a particular winner: it's inspired by a much-loved sandwich from a little shack of a lunch spot in Griffith Park, and it's avocado, fennel, sprouts and other veggies on a chipotle aioli-slathered fresh focaccia. Come later in the day and you can pair it all with some wine from a California vineyard or a local Brooklyn IPA.

As if you weren't already feeling good about yourself for fulfilling your daily vegetable quota by just smelling this place, LA-native founder Camilla Marcus has partnered with the Robin Hood Foundation to donate a portion of all sales to The Door, a non-profit that funds hospitality job training for our community's youth—and a bunch of hires were made here through that very program. Sweet.

Now, before we go—you'll find the aforementioned pillow nook and very-necessary focaccia sandwich right through here

Ilana Dadras passes her days writing about good food, talking about good food and consuming good food. Occasionally doing other things, too.

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