Coffee and Flowers at Communal Coffee in San Diego

Since we spend so much time in San Diego, we get so excited anytime an awesome, gorgeous coffee shop opens! Communal Coffee is new to North Park, in a joint store with the Native Poppy flower shop! Coffee + Flowers, so perfect. 

Communal Coffee serves Sightglass Coffee from San Francisco, and they also have a delicious honey lavender latte. Besides coffee and flowers, you can also find a lovely collection of artisanal home goods from local vendors. 

The shop is also home to the Native Poppy flower shop, where you can see all their floral work in action. Or, you can make your own mini-bouquets at their stem bar, or just grab a few amazing flowers to freshen up your place!

But seriously, how amazing is their patio?!? It's perfectly shaded from the southern California sun, there's a decent amount of seating if you want to work outside or hang with your friends, and yes, it's totally Instagrammable. You can see more of our favorite spots in North Park here

We're going to be updating our San Diego City Guide this summer, so share all your fave spots in San Diego with us in the comments! 

3 of the Best Coffee Shops in Silver Lake, LA

When you're not walking down Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake browsing the gorgeous shops, you could be filling up on delicious iced coffee at some of the best coffee shops in Silver Lake! We love how iced coffee is a staple year-round in Los Angeles, and if you're really adventurous you can check out this big list of the best coffee shops in Silver Lake. We'll make it short and sweet - here are 3 of our favorite Silver Lake coffee shops:

1. Dinosaur Coffee

Dinosaur Coffee is probably the best name for a coffee shop ever. The good news is the coffee lives up to the name-hype, with beans from San Francisco's Four Barrel Coffee, tea from Song Tea, and pastries from local favorites Farm Shop. Time it right and you can grab street tacos from Guerilla Tacos, which is one of the best taco trucks in Los Angeles. Fun fact: the owner of Dinosaur Coffee also founded Cards Against Humanity. 

2. Intelligentsia Coffee

In Silver Lake's Sunset Junction you'll find Chicago's famous Intelligentsia Coffee, which has made an impression in Silver Lake for it's photogenic interior of blue and white tiles. And, yes, the coffee! You'll find some serious cold brew here. There's also an Intelligentsia in Venice, if you find yourself on the west side (you can check out our Venice City Guide here). 

After your coffee, you can wander over to Clementine Floral Works to check out their amazing floral shop and snag a bouquet for your hotel room (or home). In-between Intelligentsia and Clementine Floral Works, you'll find The Cheese Store of Silverlake. Here, you will want to pick up some artisanal goodies, cheese, and wine for later!

3. Alfred Coffee

LA's famous "But first, coffee" cups are making moves throughout the city, and you can find them on the eastside at the Alfred Coffee coffee shop in Silver Lake! Alfred has nitro cold-brew and kombucha on tap, along with goodies and awesome growlers for your cold brew. They serve Stumptown, and you can also check them out at Alfred Coffee in West Hollywood

Bonus! If you've had enough coffee for the day, quench your thirst at the Silver Lake location of Juice Served Here, one of our favorite juice bars! Want more of our LA faves? Check out our LA City Guide

A Vegan's Dream at The Butcher's Daughter in Venice, CA

One of the best things about travelling to Southern California is not only the good food, but the really really good HEALTHY food! Restaurants like Cafe Gratitude, Gracias Madre, The Butcher's Daughter, and a whole bunch of juice bars full of acai bowls are not only gorgeous and delicious, but they're also plant-based and super good for you. Definitely some of the best vegan restaurants in LA!

We fell in love with The Butcher's Daughter this trip, it's both a cafe, juice bar, gift shop, and an amazing vegan restaurant in Venice, Los Angeles. How cute is their take-away window?! Originally from New York, The Butcher's Daughter is a bright space filled with the local Venice community (and adorable yellow accents). You can stop by to grab a coffee or juice to go, or sit down and stay awhile. 

If you're feeling like some craft beer, a mimosa, or maybe an  "elixir shot," take a seat at this gorgeous bar with a friend. The Butcher's Daughter is open from breakfast until dinner, so it's a great spot at all times of day (or night). 

Best Vegan Restaurant in Venice

The restaurant seating is equally as beautiful, and their menu is 100% vegetarian and non-dairy. There's lots of vegan and gluten-free options too, so it's an easy choice for any diet. The menu is seasonal and changes depending on what vegetables are in season, and they make a mean weekend brunch too! 

Just when you think it couldn't get any better, there's the sprawling outdoor patio. It's perfectly shaded for the Los Angeles sun, and we loved sitting and people watching as everyone strolled along Venice's famed Abbot Kinney Boulevard. For more of where to eat in Venice, check out our Venice guide here!

The Prettiest Patio at Gjusta in Venice, CA

Venice is one of our favorite neighborhoods in LA, and we are so excited to share some of our fave Venice spots with you this week! If you can only go to one place in Venice (before you spend the day at the beach, of course), you must go to the amazing bakery and cafe Gjusta

First things first, the backyard patio is amazing. Like the Venice neighborhood itself, the terrace is both comfortable, chill, and gorgeous. Pull up a seat at a mismatched common table and just enjoy good company over really, really good food. Gjusta is the bakery arm of Venice Italian restaurant Gjelina, but since we're in LA, there's plenty of gluten-free options too. But who can resist a freshly baked breakfast pizza?!

Inside, you'll find so many delicious options that you might be overwhelmed about what to choose. Our recommendation is to look at all your options and walk down the cafe until you reach the back before you decide what to try! 

At Gjusta, you'll find your classic bakery items and fresh baked bread, but there's also sandwiches, salads, other treats, and a coffee bar too. What we love most about Gjusta, though, is that it really feels like a "locals" kind of place. It's located a little bit away from the busier parts of Venice (the shops on Abbot Kinney and the beach boardwalk along Venice) so it really doesn't feel touristy at all. Add this one to your list if you want to get a taste of that Venice life! 

Seventh Flag Coffee in South Austin

 Photo by Renee Klenkee

Photo by Renee Klenkee

Austin! We love Austin, and with so many people visiting over the next few weeks for SXSW, we thought we would share some new places and some old faves to help you find your way around. One of our dear friends Adam, who we met on our very first road trip and has joined us for many since, has moved all the way to Austin to flex his coffee skills at Seventh Flag Coffee on South 1st.

Seventh Flag Coffee is housed in an actual house, which is over 100 years old! They're serving up beans from Huckleberry Roasters, and the espresso presentation is super cool: the espresso is accompanied by two tall shot glasses, one with the local Topo Chico water and the other with Tibetan Tiger black tea. 

When it comes to the name Seventh Flag, it's a play on the "six flags" that have flown over Texas (Spain, France, Mexico, Republic of Texas, Confederancy, and the United States). With the seventh flag, they're creating an identity as a country unto themselves living by their themes of "all welcome, all ways" and "our country of friends." 

 Photo by Jacob Simmons

Photo by Jacob Simmons

Stop in while you're in Austin, and say hi to our friend Adam for us! He is the best.

For more, don't forget to check out our local Austin City Guide!

Photos by Adam Van Houten and Zach Hetlage, unless otherwise noted. Thanks for sharing with us, guys! 

Coffee at Blue Bottle's W.C. Morse Cafe in Oakland

One thing you'll notice about the Bay Area is that Blue Bottle Coffee is everywhere. This homegrown coffee chain has grown and expanded outside of the Bay Area to New York, LA, and beyond, but it's the cafe in the W.C. Morse building here at home in Oakland where you really have to visit! With Blue Bottle HQ only a few blocks away, this is definitely the spot to come to if you want to experience a pioneer in the Bay Area coffee scene.

In addition to the cafe, the space is also home to an espresso machine repair shop, where you can bring your loved one for some maintenance. The space used to be a car dealership parked with lumber trucks, so it has gorgeous, high ceilings and a light and bright atmosphere. In addition to coffee and teas, you can also nosh on some Belgian street-style waffles, yum! Elaine loves the chia bowl with an almond milk macchiato too.

While there's a ton of Blue Bottle's in the Bay Area, the ones in Oakland are definitely our favorite. If you're near Jack London square and the embarcardero in Oakland, the Webster Street cafe is a cute little spot for a pick-me-up too. 

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Want more Oakland love? Check out our Local Oakland City Guide

Camp Lifestyle + Coffee in Whistler

If you're looking for good coffee, local west coast products, and a rad patio, look no further than Camp Lifestyle + Coffee in Whistler's Function Junction. The beautiful, open space is so different than most of what you'll find in Whistler, and we are big fans of their gorgeous design. They sell a wide variety of goods that are all designed, sourced, and crafted in North America (and mainly the west coast!)

You can find so many different kinds of beautiful items here, like unique ceramics, jewelry, clothes, and these totally awesome scarves and pillows made from extra chunky wool. It's the perfect place to find a gift to take back home.

Outside, they have a pretty unreal patio. Yes, this would be lovely and serene during the summertime, but we thought it was extra rad in the winter. Something about snow-capped trees and a running waterfall that makes you go "ahhhhhh." Bonus points? The fire pit.

And we can't forget about the coffee! Camp Espresso Bar serves local 49th Parallel coffee from Vancouver, along with tea and locally baked goodies. There's no drip coffee here, so you'll have to "make do" with an Americano. 

In the downstairs shop you'll find even more local products, like everything you need to keep your beard soft, to candles and Canada-print throw pillows. In true form, you can find camping essentials too, with rain gear, tents, and even canoe paddles. This is a must-see place during your stay in Whistler! Don't forget to check out our full city guide too :) 

On Taylor: jacket from Sorel, toque from Brixton, tee from Wildfang, boots from Sorel
On Elaine: jacket from Topshop, jeans from Free People, boots from Sorel

Coconuts + toast at Trouble Coffee, Oakland

We talked a bit about Trouble Coffee in our post about the Outer Sunset, but the coffee shop you'll find in West Oakland is a stark contrast to the original- it's big, bright, and oh-so-white. Fear not, the toast and coconuts are still to be found!

Here to tell you the story of Trouble Coffee is our friend (and talented photographer!) Cory Maryott. Cory is a California native and a freelance photographer who now calls the Bay Area home, and you can get to know him more on his Instagram! Take it away, Cory.

I’d heard of the original Trouble Coffee from a friend a while back. Their original location is a few blocks from the beach, on Judah street in the Outer Sunset neighborhood of San Francisco. I was told of their wondrously delicious cinnamon toast and coffee, and of the other intriguing menu choices—whole coconuts, and grapefruit juice shots. I was also warned that Trouble is quite unlike other coffee shops, and that the staff and culture could be a little “intense”. When I heard a new location had opened close to me in the East Bay, I was excited to check it out and see what the buzz was all about.

My friend Ellie and I met one morning and enjoyed coffee, toast, and a coconut in the beautiful light filled cafe. Large windows flank both the south and east walls, and light bounces around the nearly all white interior. 

The culture here is very different from other coffee shops. The space is designed to get people to talk to one another, so the use of laptops and other electronic devices is not allowed. Instead, customers are encouraged to grab a coconut or toast and some coffee and strike up a conversation with someone next to you, or the staff there.

Trouble's owner Giulietta has a very compelling story, and you should definitely listen to this episode from This American Life to hear it all. Every element of her coffee shop is derived from her experiences: cinnamon toast was one of Giulietta's comfort foods, and coconuts were a nutritious source of sustenance for her. At Trouble, the coconuts are served with both a straw and a spoon, to scrape out the meat. Coconuts were also a way for Giulietta to start conversations with people and make new friends.

I had the latte and cinnamon toast, while Ellie went for the coconut and a drip coffee. You can learn more about Giulietta's story here

We both enjoyed the airy space and Giulietta had a conversation with us. I actually didn’t know what she looked like, so I had no idea she was the owner until she talked about her vision for an all white coffee shop with us. She and the other staff are very kind and welcoming, don’t be shy about talking with them!

Some things to know before you go: the cafe is cash only, so be sure to bring cash! Otherwise there is an ATM on site. Trouble has been known to reprimand people for taking photos in their other locations, but it seems that rule has now been relaxed a bit. The staff kindly requested I do not include them in any photos, so please be sure to double check if you go!

All photography in this post is by Cory Maryott. Thanks for sharing your story, Cory!

Mojo Coffee in Lincoln City, Oregon

Coffee is essential for roadtrips, and we found the cutest little place in Lincoln City, Oregon on our way up the coast! The best part? You don't even need to get out of your car to "refuel" on espresso.

The drive-thru window at Mojo Coffee Co is so cute, and the baristas are super friendly. Grab a cup of Stumptown (or a cold brew!) and you'll be all set to drive the coast. There's also a small menu of breakfast burritos, sandwiches, and other snacks that are a way better alternative to fast food drive thru!

Cycles, runners, walkers....have no fear! There's also a "walk up window" for you to order from too. We love this spot! 

Our Range Rover Sport was provided to us free of charge by Land Rover USA for our trip. 

Coffee + Apothecary in Portland

Oh hey, Portland! We're so excited to share our awesome Oregon adventure with you guys, and there's no better place to start a trip through the Columbia River Gorge, Mt. Hood, and the Oregon Coast than some quality time in Portland. Here's a few of our recent faves!

Portland is home to good coffee in general, but it's also home to the coffee shop Good Coffee. It's a friendly, comforting place that is cute without being pretentious, and yes, they have good coffee. They're serving up local essentials like Heart and Coava, and beans from Roseline and MadCap. Plus, they serve tea from San Francisco's Song Tea and Ceramics.

Wildfang is already a rad online store, but they also have a storefront in Portland! Their shop is filled with "menswear" inspired clothing for the ladies, including their popular "Tomboy" tanks and tees. If you stop by, don't forget to take a swing on the indoor swing! Because why not? 

Airstreams are cool, but boutiques that live inside airstreams? Even cooler (and so Portland).

Menagerie PDX is a small shop full of products that are good for both the body and the environment. Double the love, double the happiness. Stop in to discover their unique small-bath cosmetics, fragrances, and everything else you could ever need to look (and feel!) your best. 

Thanks for reading! We triple extra love you with a cherry on top.

The Best Coffee Shops in Las Vegas

The first thing we do when we arrive in a new city is scope out the coffee scene. We always feel at home as soon as we've found our new favorite coffee shop, but to be honest we were a little skeptical of what we would find in Vegas! The good news is that there's actually amazing coffee programs here, and here's a list of the best coffee shops in Las Vegas. 

Mothership Coffee Roasters is a local micro-roastery located in the "real life" part of Vegas,  known as Henderson, NV. Instead of the glitz of the strip, the shop is located in a strip mall, and they're one of the only roasters in town. Try their ntirogen cold brew or farm-to-table pastries! 

Located in Vegas' new Arts District, Makers & Finders is a bright and beautiful spot with amazing coffee. They have 7 brewing methods and 5 different single-origin beans on hand, so they know what's up. Bonus: the iced almond milk chai latte is a real winner, it tastes like cake in cup.  Come in with friends for lunch and the Latin comfort food will make you want to stay a while! 

If you go one place in Vegas, make it PublicUs. The coffee program is so rad, featuring "cocktails" like an Espresso Old Fashioned. Plus, the man behind the menu is Cole McBride, one of the most competitive baristas in North America. Try a charcuterie plate, enjoy a craft beer, or get some work done with the best wifi in town. 

Last but not least is Sunrise Coffee, Vegas' first micro-roastery and parent to Mothership Coffee, and it's a warm and inviting neighborhood coffee shop. The food is healthy, affordable, and there's tons of gluten-free and vegetarian options - try the famous Alien burrito!

More Favorite Places in San Diego

Sometimes it takes a while to get to know a city, and we've been falling more in love with San Diego this summer. Here's a look at some of the new (and new to us) places that we've added to our San Diego city guide! Like this brother-sister shop that's a bright corner full of cookies and clothes. 5 and A Dime is a local street style brand, and The Good Stuff Cookie Co makes cookies filled with cheesecake. Yes, cheesecake. OMG. 

East Village is industrial-chic, full of high ceilings, exposed brick, and tons of light. Bar Basic may be called basic, but you won't find any Uggs here. Instead you'll find a cool, modern loft space with delicious thin-crust pizzas, a good beer list, and a cool but chill vibe that's perfect for groups. See our East Village neighborhood guide here!

There's a few Cafe Gratitude's in Southern California, and for good reason: it's California cuisine at it's best! This bright and beautiful space features an entirely plant-based menu (vegans rejoice!) and it's sooo delicious. Each dish is an affirmation, so when you order you end up saying things like  "I am strong" or "I am beautiful." But mostly, you'll just be satisfied. 

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We've also added a couple places in Normal Heights, like the good pizza / better beer at Blind Lady Ale House and the delicious sandwiches at Burnside

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Finally, there's Holsem Coffee in the ever-hip North Park 'hood. Have you ever been to a coffee parlor? Think cocktails, but with coffee instead, like espresso shakes, banana bread iced coffee, and Nutella cold brew. There's also a breakfast and lunch menu, and wifi that you can totally work on. See all our North Park faves here!

Thanks for reading! Don't forget to check out the rest of our San Diego finds too!