Cortados and A Secret Patio Make This LA French Café A Celebration in Gastronomical Pleasures
“I’ve seen a lot of L.A. and I think it’s also a place of secrets: secret houses, secret lives, secret pleasures…” – L.A. Story
Any committed foodie worth his or her salt bowl has made at least a few trips to the West Coast to checkout Los Angeles’ offerings, from the hottest raw kitchen, to the best new Michelin chef import, crafting handmade pastas or the best sushi on both coasts. And they’ll all tell you the same thing: in the sunshine state, it’s all about eating al fresco. The world’s best restaurateurs know that atmosphere is of equal import to the outstanding fare that they serve. Without LA’s private patios, outdoor fire pits, curtained-off lounges, sleek balconies, and roof decks floating amidst the twinkling backdrop of Sunset or downtown, restaurant and café visitors would just be enjoying so many mouth-watering experiences in, well… a room with four walls. And really – we can leave that to New Yorkers, can’t we?
Chef Eric Cuenin, owner of LA’s Westside’s French Café, aptly named Kiff Kafe, agreed – so he decided to create something uniquely special for his customers. Taking his cue from the signless alley-entry clubs and nameless VIP rooms of the 90’s, and the current private clubs that keep the city’s socials basking in exclusivity and draped in the anonymous privacy they crave, Kiff Kafe, a French café serving addictive coffee creations and delectable French food, has now opened its secret outdoor patio to regulars (and would-be regulars), who can now enjoy their recently added wine menu, in addition to other tasty items from their original and delicious French Mediterranean offerings.
I had heard some rumblings among friends about a friendly new neighborhood spot with to die for cappuccinos and cortados, and I’d planned to stop in for a date or a lunch, but once I heard they had added a “secret patio,” I promptly moved my trip up in my calendar. Spoiler alert: It was worth the rush.
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*Article published in French Quarter Magazine on September 26, 2021. Written by Dana Corddry.