Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Intelligentsia Coffee!


Bless my little broken down Dyson vacuum!

Because, if it hadn't been in need of repair, I would have never gone to Intelligentsia Coffee today! (Sorry I can't hyperlink for some reason on blogger lately....check it out at www.intelligentsiacoffee.com

I had seen Intelligentsia on the Food network last year, on Giada's travel show, when she visited Chicago. We were about to travel to Chicago about that time, so I made a note of it, and wanted to try and seek it out while I was there. The one-cup-at-a-time brewing method (for coffee, not just espresso) fascinated me, as did the piece of chocolate zucchini bread Giada ordered! I never got anywhere close to it, so it never happened - but then to my delight I realized there is a location here in L.A. In Silver Lake though, not an area I find myself in too often.

But today, my darling bumble-bee yellow Dyson vacuum needed a little tune-up, and the place I needed to take it was, you guessed it - right by Intelligentsia! Bingo!

So I went on a little adventure. I had fun driving, all by my lonesome, through the charming and interesting neighborhoods of Atwater Village and the like. People were jogging, walking their dogs- a real sense of neighborhood was felt. And, I just love old neighborhoods, so I really enjoyed the drive. There were a few times I felt nervous in my top-less Jeep, but never fear, I always have my pepper spray nearby! Seriously, I do!

I arrived at Intelligentsia and was fortunate to find a parking place right on Sunset. The place was SO very hip. I sized myself up to see if I was as hip as everyone else there and concluded, NO I wasn't. But whatever. I ordered a cup of decaf and a lemon ricotta almond muffin about the size of my face. Of course, I told myself, I would not eat it ALL. Yeah, sure.

So I got my coffee and muffin and plunked down my (ouch!) $7. I threw in the mandatory large splash of half and half and one raw sugar into my coffee, and off I went. When I got to the car, I took my first taste - WOW! I have never ever tasted coffee that good or even remotely that good. I was stunned. And very happy. I just kept saying "wow" even though I had no one to hear me!

I then took a bite of the muffin -DOUBLE WOW. It was soft, moist, tender, lemony and with some sliced toasted almonds on top that had a great almond-extract/sugary taste. And, it was not in a muffin wrapper - my pet peeve! After the second bite, I made the executive decision to skip lunch in favor of eating every bite of this muffin in my hand. It was just that good.

As I drove, I continued with an alternating sip of coffee, bite of muffin - cruising down Los Feliz with the morning sun on me - feeling like this was a really special treat. I don't usually find myself alone, drinking gourmet coffee and muffin, and it was kind of nice, you know? Responsibilites out the door for a momentary time of enjoying a simple pleasure.

And I can't wait to pick the Dyson up later this week....hee hee...

***UPDATE 7/30.

I picked up the Dyson today, and swung by Intelligentsia, too, of course. This time I dressed a little hipper to fit in. I decided to try the latte today, as that is usually my normal coffee drink of choice. Don't get me wrong - it was good and all, the milk had a fabulous taste but their regular coffee is really something special and I definitely preferred it over the latte.

Funny thing was, after I returned to my car today, I realized I had parked in a spot that required using a parking meter machine nearby. DUH. Double duh, really, as I did it the first time I came, too. Thankfully, no mean parking enforcement person got me. That would have been one EXPENSIVE cup of coffee.

Incidentally, if anyone has a Dyson or any kind of vacuum for that matter, I highly recommend Leonard over at Garland Vacuum on Los Feliz. He has been in business for 50 years (his parents used to own the shop)and knows what he's doing. I don't like his large poodle that barks incessantly and looks ready to bite, or the fact that both times I went Leonard forgot to zip his fly, but he was sweet as sugar, was reasonable in price, and knows his vacuums for sure. He was quick and accurate with my Dyson. And, you could get a cup of coffee at Intelligentsia while you're at it. Think about it.

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The Leoness said...

I am laughing as I read this as my beloved friend, Jen Crawford, and her husband are self-proclaimed "coffee geeks" and that is their FAVORITE place to get coffee in the greater LA area. My apologies for not telling you about it sooner! Glad you enjoyed it and have a reason to return again soon! ;)

the e-wife, Karen said...

Is this Laura?

I have talked to Jen about this place on several occasions! I know she knows her coffee.

Lance said...

Lance and I grew up in Silverlake....way before it was hip and trendy. We will have to try this place sometime. Giada has a recipe called Nonna's Lemon Ricotta Biscuits. They have lemon, ricotta, and almond. One of our favorite places in that area is Cafe Tropical. An earthy, urban Portos--way better than Portos.

the e-wife, Karen said...

Hi Bonnie...

Yes, the next thing I want to do is try Giada's biscuits. I even have some fresh ricotta in the fridge so I may do that today... I love all her food and I'm sure they are delish.

Thanks for the tip on Cafe Tropical. You know I love tips on food. I'll take Rich there soon!


Lance said...

If you do ever make it to Cafe Tropical, don't bother with the pastries-they are average. Actually, the guava cheese pastry is great. What to try-the Cuban sandwiches, cafe con leche and the smoothies. Be forwarned, lots of pictures of Castro on the walls! Have a great week Karen. Bonnie