Top 7 Coffee Shops in Westwood, Near UCLA

A Guide to Westwood Coffee Shops

Alfred Coffee

westwood coffee shops

Originally founded on Melrose Place, near the heart of West Hollywood, Alfred was a first among third-wave cafes to place an instagrammable emphasis on customer experience. Their Westwood coffee shop is no exception, offering aesthetically inclined patrons a photo op per every beautified corner, for instance, there’s the budding blue and gold floral wall, a zebra-striped workbench made from smooth tiles, and an occasional touch of tropical plant life. The picturesque decor serves as an accomplice to daringly innovative, rewardingly delicious coffee beverages and a scrumptious selection of bagel sandwiches, croissants, and gluten-free blueberry muffins.

Alfred offers a variety of distinctly vibrant locations throughout Los Angeles, don’t hesitate to check out their glamorous vibes, after all, how often do you get the chance to walk out of a cafe as thrilled about the experience as you are with their drink?

Espresso Profeta

Housed within a scholarly-looking building that’s been externally embellished by the craftsmanship of artistic bricklayers, Espresso Profeta’s old-world windows emit an alluring warm glow worth exploring. Once inside this bastion of java excellence among Westwood coffee shops, guests can expect to encounter an abundance of seating, exposed brick walls dappled with locally sourced paintings, and an adjacent, natural stone tile courtyard enriched by greenery.

Based on a traditional Northern Italian style of espresso extraction, their skilled baristi pull a double ristretto for each and every cup. The milk is then free poured and topped with the classic Rosetta design, perhaps making for the tastiest, most photo-worthy coffee experience near the University of California, Los Angeles campus.

Ministry of Coffee

Imported from Australia’s glistening Sydney shores, Ministry of Coffee finds resounding success by capturing the highly mature Aussie coffee culture and infusing it with flavorful Turkish elements. Their coveted signature blend brings together full-bodied Columbian beans, with Costa Rican bite, Honduras dark chocolate flavors, and a honey-comb-like Ethiopian finish. All the beans get hand-roasted in Sydney before being air freighted to their final destination, the eagerly awaiting hands of studious Angelinos.

This Ministry of Coffee location, frequented by bruins, is furthermore appreciated for its friendly work environment, diverse array of comfortable seating arrangements, and spacious interior, which is complemented by high ceilings.

Elysee Bakery & Cafe

photo by Jose Ubeda

Inhabiting a vibrant, verdure-laced corner store and originally opened in 1979, Elysee Bakery & Cafe is a Los Angeles hallmark and has garnered considerable recognition for offering scrumptious baked goodies in a cheerful setting. The roomy grounds are typically rife with college students, youthful couples sharing sweet treats, and tourists indulging themselves in a hard-earned break from the exciting sights and scenes to be found throughout Westwood village.

If you happen to be there at the end of the day, being extra courteous to the staff may just earn you a free pastry before closing; not that a mouthwatering pastry made from scratch should be the moral reasoning behind human decency, of course!

Upside Down

A coffee-fueled arts and events space in Westwood Village, Upside Down is a place to connect with friends and meet new ones. Owned and operated by the non-profit Jews for Jesus, it’s designed to be a resource for the neighborhood, with this being said, coffee gets served for the much-appreciated price of whatever you’re willing to pay; that’s right, customers get to pay whatever they feel like the coffee is worth. Don’t take that as a sign the handcrafted java isn’t amazing, in reality, Upside Down has partnered with Golden State roasters to build a meticulously crafted menu of exceptional beverages, such as their L’Chaim or delicious seasonal specialties.

Keep in mind, the priority here is showcasing local, emerging artists, especially from the neighborhood and UCLA. The monthly exhibitions hosted at Upside Down are built on relationships made through the community and are expected to resume as local restriction measures loosen.

Espressoteric Coffee

Espressoteric had the less than ideal fortune of opening on January 1st, 2020, just a couple of months before city-wide lockdowns forced most Westwood coffee shops to reimagine operations. Despite encountering these early challenges, this cozy cafe’s steadfast dedication to providing delicious takes on timeless java favorites from lattes and cold brew to matcha and chai helped them navigate the last trying year or so. As restrictions ease, Angelinos will be pleasantly surprised by Espressoteric’s vintage charm, gorgeous exposed brick walls, and overall comfy atmosphere.

Junbi

Junbi translates to “preparation” in Japanese and this adorable little hole-in-the-wall Matcha outpost encourages visitors to step out of their comfort zone and prepare daringly. The founders are a team of two couples (four best friends: June, Dan, Anna, and Jeremy) who seek to create a movement that draws on the strength of the earth, delivering energy and goodness through matcha, to help people push their limits and walk their own path.

Matcha is packed with high levels of L-Theanine, which cancels out negative effects of caffeine (such as the jitters & crash) by helping the body gradually absorb caffeine over a period of 4 to 6 hours rather than all at once.

 

If you enjoyed this guide to the best Westwood coffee shops, be sure to check out our list of the Top 10 Coffee Shops in Orange County!