cognoscenti coffee

an architect’s coffee dream

In a very crowded landscape of local (and regional, national) coffee shops in LA, there are a lot of very solid coffee options out there and many (but not all) do pass the test of true coffee snobs. Cognoscenti passes with flying colors. Without the loud brand recognition of Alfred, the signature drinks list of Philz or even the elite minimalist design of Maru, Cognoscenti has grown to be a trusted presence in the coffee community of the city. Founder Yeekai Lim spent years working as an architect before he doubled down in the coffee world. Cognoscenti began as a pop up, or rather pop in cafe teaming up with Proof for a few years before opening up the first brick and mortar in what used to be a very quiet part of Culver City (which has now been branded as the Culver City Arts District and is a growing hot spot).

Cognoscenti is for people who are care for the coffee not the vibes, though the vibes are a perfectly sleek backdrop for coffee making — Lim designed the space himself. Rather, it is coffee-first in that the menu sticks to the classics, coffee, milk, little more to distract from the quality of product itself, and expert baristas behind the bar to craft the perfect cup. Over the years, they’ve built up a network of farmers and producers, emphasizing high quality, sustainable and ethical buying as they expand to home brewing products as well.

the details


Culver: 6114 Washington Blvd, Culver City
DTLA: 868 S Olive St, Los Angeles
Roastery: 1118 San Julian St, Los Angeles


Culver: 8am – 4pm every day
DTLA: 7am – 2pm every day
Roastery: 8am – 4pm weekdays only

Price$$ – on par with any other independent coffee shop in the city
Aestheticminimal and modern

good to know

Go here for: your morning coffee, your midday coffee

Order this: keep it simple with a batch brew (which rotates from various origins throughout the week), or get your go to espresso drink, it is sure to be great

Amount of time to spend: 10 minutes for a quick stop by, or a little longer for a sit down coffee break or coffee meeting

When to come: any time you need a caffeine fix


  • in Culver usually isn’t too bad, you can find metered parking on Washington or street park on the side streets.
  • in downtown it’s always bad, so probably better for a quick stop by if you’re running errands in a place with parking like Whole Foods nearby (roastery location is probably better for finding metered parking)


Other things to note: Both the Culver and Downtown locations have indoor and outdoor seating.

Last visited: February 2022

Last updated: February 2022

while you're here