We's in California

Saturday, September 23, 2006

LA County Dept of Health and Safety Notice 3847B.22 (rev C)

Although this policy has been followed for quite some time now in Los Angeles, we would like to officially inform you that real cups will no longer be used. So please, no more real cups. Serving coffee to customers in real glass cups will not only lead to swift punitive measures, but also to financial ruin due to the obvious astronomical overhead of purchasing and washing real cups, the loss of respect in your community and, in some rare cases, will result in bleeding from the eyes, ears, and nose.

Recently Dayna and I set out to find a place in the Valley where you can sit down and get coffee in a real cup and wasn't a Starbucks or a Coffee Bean. These two things mutually exclusive to begin with. We've tried this many times before to no avail, which would explain our shock and awe when we found such a place on Ventura Blvd. A small locally owned coffee shop. It had everything we've all come to expect from any local coffee shop worth its own salt:

Badly painted paintings by a painter someone who works there knows.
Mismatched, wait, no, eclectic tables and chairs, each with 13 layers of paint.
The girl behind the counter with short hair and one of those things on her chin.
The huge assortment of herbal tea with flavors like mother earth zen, earthy zen buddha earth, and raspberry femi-choco blast.
The table of asians.
The white unshaven university student in the corner with messy papers all over the place, but all he's been doing for the last 3 hours is playing with his iBook figuring out to get as many local hot babes as possible onto his myspace friends list.

And here's the kicker: paper cups, even if you're not taking it to go.

For shame I say, for shame. Why is this? I've seen this in other coffee shops trying to give off that indie environmentalist chique, but they still use paper cups no matter what. I know in Canada that still even corporate chains like Jim Hortons will actually give you a real cup if you're sitting in. And who can forget the Robbins Donuts cups of yester-yore: beige, yellow and brown with just a hint of cigarette smoke aftertaste. What's that? You say they're recycled? Doesn't matter. Although the environmental concerns, I feel compelled to resist our generation's apparent (and appalling for that matter) disregard for class the public space. Think about it, we are the least classy generation in quite a while. And I can say all this because, you all know, I'm such a classy guy myself. So let's bring back real cup, if not for our children....

I'm writing this on a plane by the way. We're going to Indianapolis for the weekend. It's to see Sufjan Stevens and it's our 2nd anniversary (in that order). When you read this please pray for Dayna, she's sitting beside a plane talker. I was disappointed when I discovered that NWA stands for Northwest Airlines, and not the rap group from the late 80's. Now that would be an airline! I hope there aren't any Snakes on This Plane.


  • Highland Grounds in Hollywood. Or The Coffee Table in Silverlake.

    They give you real giant pottery drinking vessels, just like the ones you used to see in "Friends" and everything.

    Can't help you with the Valley.

    By Blogger Scott, at September 23, 2006  

  • We've officially given up on the Valley (for it has given up on us) so we'll try the one in Silverlake. I heard somewhere that Silverlake makes you cool.

    By Blogger Gareth, at September 24, 2006  

  • Strangely, there are no indie coffee houses in Indianapolis...or rain for that matter.

    If you're still hanging around town by the time you read this entry, go tour the Broad Ripple area. Think you'll enjoy indie coffee, but lots of good indie restaurants and bars.

    Go Dawgs.

    By Anonymous w in w, at September 25, 2006  

  • Lulu's Beehive on Ventura and Ethel uses real cups... or they did really, really recently.

    By Anonymous Dave the Ubergeek, at September 26, 2006  

  • I think the Salvation Army still uses real cups. No arabica beans, but real cups.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 26, 2006  

  • Hi,

    Try Dupar's on Ventura Blvd. They have the best pancakes in the valley as well as nice mugs and even French Press coffee too! The other is the Tallyrand in Burbank.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at September 27, 2006  

  • French Press? That's a bit too Un-American for us. We are actually going to find and try some of these places, thanks to everyone for the suggestions. I should have talked about this a while ago.

    As for Indianapolis, it was great. What an amazing town. It's like Winnipeg, without the mayo. I will definitely write about it.

    By Blogger Gareth, at September 27, 2006  

  • Gareth, like you said,Tim Hortons gives you the ceramic, as does The Fyxx and Starbucks in Winnipeg. The Starbucks I went to actually had those "for your protection" paper toilet seat covers,I guess they are not perfect after all. What about the paper waste that occurs in the form of TPS reports and memos and such in office work everyday? TPS reports (and their cover letters) are not really waste per say, but rather a brilliant organizational construct that binds a company together in unity and community, the central factors comprising business as we know it. Kind of like how dodgeball forms the brilliant organizational construct that is seemingly inherent in gym class.

    By Anonymous Jeremy, at September 28, 2006  

  • Dude.

    You HAVE to experience the wonder that is the Tallyrand.

    You know those torn vinyl seats, the pies in the rotating display case, the G-d awful counter seats with the faux-wood formica?

    That's the Tallyrand. You'll be the youngest people in there by at least forty years. It's a throwback diner in a city that was dragged kicking and screaming out of the 50's.

    By Anonymous Dave the Ubergeek, at October 02, 2006  

  • I resent The Fyxx being lumped in with Tim Hortons and Starbucks, yes there are four in the city now, however there is a great local Winnipegger manning those espresso shops so back off!

    By Anonymous chandra, your friendly fyxx employee, at October 03, 2006  

  • I heard that owner of the fyxx now spends his winters (and summers) on the Figi Islands or something like that. At least he's not a businessman from Vancouver.

    I have no idea what/where the Tallyrand is.

    By Blogger Gareth, at October 03, 2006  

  • Here you go Garth.


    1700 W Olive Ave
    Burbank, CA 91506
    (818) 846-9904

    By Anonymous Big Mo, at October 03, 2006  

  • The Tallyrand is a restaurant. Good things to eat involve chicken club sandwiches, turkey dinners, sourdough bread, and pie. Salads are not good choices at the Tallyrand.

    By Anonymous Dave the Ubergeek, at October 05, 2006  

  • We will go to this tallyrand. And we will eat there.

    By Blogger Gareth, at October 10, 2006  

  • I will highly recommend the web site There you can peruse at your leisure a variety of funky/cool/retro (read:old) restaurants and bars throughout the Los Angeles area, even in the Valley.

    Some pictures are on there too. The only concern of the proprietor of this web site is whether the place is old, and feels like it has not been "updated" in several decades. Thus, a "time machine."

    There are also some intermittent mentions on there of how good the food is at these places. This is important to you, but secondary to the proprietor, who is more concerned with how the places look and feel. But, it's a fun web site to look at and if nothing else proves that LA does have some historical places to explore, even if you have to hunt them down. And you learn a little history as well.

    By Blogger Scott, at October 17, 2006  

  • Nat's Early Bite ... real cups, real everything. Same with Four 'N' Twenty Pies.

    By Blogger Steven Rosenberg, at October 24, 2006  

  • I think that when you enjoy your coffee -you get the maximum coffee health benefits:)

    By Blogger Happy, at February 02, 2008  

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