Coffee from paradise

I had the best coffee in Los Angeles  last week at Caffé Luxxe. Following  a tip from the director of Coffee Quality Institute—aka the Cupper Gods—I experienced the joy of having a real espresso outside europe: “espresso should have a rich honey-like texture topped off with a velvety, dark red-brown “crema.” This is the sign of una bella tazza di espresso: a beautiful cup of espresso.”

Here is my first cappuccino:

caffe luxxe cappuccino michele roohani

I was so sick and tired of (at best mediocre and at worst just plain bad) coffee served in the chain stores. The horror in the eyes of my european friends  after receiving a bit of bitter coffee in the bottom of a big paper cup has always amused me! It looks like they are serving you what’s left from the previous customer…

caffe luxxe cappuccino michele roohani black and white

I went back this morning for an early cup and standing at the counter, Italian bar style, I read a horrifying article about Putin and Georgia (call me a masochist) and remembered all the problems I was trying to forget… The great coffee brought back the vanished smile to my face!

café  Huntley michele roohani santa monica view

They have a great Synesso machine and Yaniv, the talented barista creates these fabulous cups with panache! To see how, watch this short clip and if you have a better attention span (read more than 30 seconds) watch this one on the craft of making coffee art.

So is coffee good for us? An excellent article on the subject by Jane Brody in New York Times has some answers.

Finding a European style café that serves great espresso in Los Angeles can almost make one forget the world’s problems.  Now If you really want to be scared just look at this map from Le Monde Diplomatique.

balkan map le monde diplomatique michele roohani

How is that for a nightmare in the making? Not only we are not at the End of History  but people like Fukumaya should start paying attention to the latest conflict involving Russia!  You take Kosovo, we take Georgia and Moldova!! Be scared people, be very scared…

“I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma: but perhaps there is a key. That key is Russian national interests.”  Winston Churchill

These are sobering times – now you know why I needed to find a good cup of joe.

9 thoughts on “Coffee from paradise

  1. Thank you so much for the impute. I am a coffee drinker and I could not agree with you more, we do not have a good coffee place in LA.

  2. It is interesting how you have woven good coffee making, its great decorating schemes, and world politics all in one article. May be if everyone drank more coffee (or none at all?) the political problems of the world would be less.
    Many people may not know that there are many steps in the coffee production and selection process, including taste and aroma classification, which are by far more complex than those for wine.

  3. For all you LA dweller if you want a fantastic cup of espresso, you don’t need to go all the way to Paris or Rome. Fly a couple of hours north. We have some of the best coffee shops in Seattle; I am not talking Starbucks. You are hearing this from a real espresso drinker who had been to both France and Italy, and had drank coffee everyday.

  4. The number one globally traded commodity is Oil. What’s number two? Coffee! It seems to me that we’re buying oil to turn on the lights and drink coffee to stay up way passed our bedtime! Whether its because of work, TV, a social occasion, or even to solve the world’s problems, we just don’t want to go to bed (unless it’s for something we want to go bed for! 😉 So, although there is much sophistication surrounding this drink, and certainly its uncle the Tea, the essence of these drinks is basically the drug caffeine. It’s their raison d’etre and the cause of their popularity! But recently, this drug has been the cause a whole branch of vulgar drinks – the so called “Energy Drinks!” These potions have single handedly derailed man’s evolution into the half evolved, Homo sapiens discotecatus, or Mr. Good Bar! “Two Vodka Red Bulls please!” “Oh yeah!” I hear this nasty tasting drink uttered all the time now. I don’t know why, but we mix the two drinks probably for the same reason we now take pills to treat the side effect of other pills we take! We’re nuts! No wonder a recent report indicated that Manhattan’s sewer water is highly caffeinated! The stuff is in an out in a jiffy! This explains the behavior of all the fish getting giddy around the Hudson river!
    I only drink one cup of coffee in the morning and it works for me. Of course, now that I’ve read this post and see your beautiful pictures of thee espresso cups with the tantalizing froth, I’ll have to make a stop at a local coffee shop after work….oh crap.. I’ll be up all night again!!!

  5. I’m very late, but how pleasant is your article about coffee!
    Should you come and visit me one day in my place, you will enjoy the dark smelly coffee I will make for you.

    I always drink the best coffee I can find. I prepare it myself and believe me… i’m addict to coffee as I’m addict to flowers, and you already know this!

    Anyway, to share a table at a terrace wherever it is in the world, is a wonderful moment.. BUT with a dark strong tasty and smelly beverage with the name of coffee, is just a moment I treasure!
    Want a noisette ?? ok… I would have it with you.

    I Love the way you took the photos, and, yes coffee is camaraderie, friendship, It is a great moment to have a coffee when you are a student with your books (and in our youth with cigarettes -Gauloises or Gitanes- or P. Stuyvesant- or Dunhill which I loved so much).
    It is a great moment to enjoy coffee while looking at people walking the streets…. Coffee is one of the best beverages I appreciate, and thank you Michele for that beautiful writing.

  6. I applaud that you now know the difference between good coffee and the other kind. Good coffee is hard to come by, but easier still then it used to be. Your images are lovely, your weaving of the themes interesting, so I will be eagerly watching what comes next in this to me new world of bloggers. I am glad your site was pointed out to me! om

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