At the base of the NEXT on Lex Apartments stands Love You Latte, the Glendale coffee shop that’s frankly more than a cafe. Its physical position as a support for a residential building draws immediate parallels to its place in Glendale’s community. This full-service, family-owned establishment opened its doors during the early days of pandemic. It was a time when the community was starved for a sense of togetherness. Therefore, it’s only fitting that founder Talin Stephen has kept a social aspect central to her vision. And the absolutely delicious food and beverages are just a byproduct of that love.
The Potential of a Vacant Glendale Cafe
Stephen was no stranger to hosting friends. But something about coffee at her place began to feel limiting. When she noticed a “for lease” sign in a coffee shop window on the first floor of a residential building, it almost seemed too casual to be fate.
But the spark lit a raging fire in her heart and mind. Perhaps this was the next level for which she’d been longing. Yet Glendale restaurants were a dime a dozen. What would elevate her establishment to greatness?
From the very beginning, Stephen knew this space would house more than a Glendale coffee shop. It was fertile ground for a philosophy of togetherness. A sacred space where a diverse community could bond over excellent food, coffee… and company. It’s centered on a commitment to customer service that starts and ends every experience at Love You Latte.
The Love You Latte Family
Now Stephen had the space. But she needed the team that could bring her vision to life. Looking back on her journey, she feels like the kitchen staff were with her from day one. And they in turn brought along their families. Perhaps this is what contributes to the familial vibe so evident amongst the staff.
Ultimately, it’s this team that instills Stephen with the greatest feeling of pride. Her staff doesn’t dread coming to work. In this day and age, that’s nothing short of a miracle!
Aesthetics That Differentiate from Other Glendale Restaurants
But Stephen also worked hard to create an atmosphere that keeps her customers just as comfortable as her staff. Pop art peppers vibrant walls, soothing recessed lighting complements sassy neon, and lush greenery contributes to a sense of abundance. It’s part of Stephen’s passion for aesthetics.
She subscribes to the philosophy that we “eat with our eyes first”. In fact, she considers it central to her lifestyle.
A Calling Steeped in History
Having grown up in Glendale, Stephen recreates the atmosphere that made her instantly feel at home in a city so far from her place of birth. Prior to moving to Glendale, she’d spent her formative years in Armenia. Coffee always had a place at family get-togethers and social gatherings for as long as Stephen can remember.
Of course, in those days, coffee was “soorj.” This Armenian coffee is created by grinding coffee beans into an ultra-fine powder. It is then added to water and boiled in a specialized pot. Noted for its robust flavor and caffeinated kick, it’s traditionally served in three-ounce demitasse cups.
Stephen recalls a sense of awakening when she arrived in Glendale as a teenager and opened her eyes to all of coffee’s potential. You can still get an Armenian coffee brewed to perfection at Love You Latte. And many of her customers prefer this more traditional Armenian variety.
But as the name suggests, you’ll also find some of the most creative lattes, teas, and other delicious beverages Glendale has to offer. In a way, Stephen is tapping into the calling of her ancestors.
After all, it is widely believed that Armenian merchants were widely responsible for bringing coffee from the Ottoman Empire to Europe. In this way, there’s an almost sacred quality to Stephen’s mission that extends beyond her personal vision.
A Simple Glendale Coffee Shop with Complex Flavors
Stephen is quick to celebrate the simple pleasures of life: a riveting conversation paired with the comforts of a cup of coffee. But the flavors presented by Love You Latte’s menu are anything but simple. And while Stephen puts the community first, the food and drink are likely to be the first hook that reels you into Love You Latte’s cozy environment.
Plenty of Glendale restaurants capitalize on the city’s burgeoning Armenian population by sticking to Mediterranean cuisine. But Stephen takes her Armenian heritage more as an influence for endeavors that replace tradition with creativity. In this way, she sees many of Love You Latte’s dishes as offering gateways to Armenian cuisine for the uninitiated.
Customers count both the New Yorker and the Ultimate Croissant among their favored savory snacks. The New Yorker presents a parade of flavors as bustling as the streets of the breakfast sandwich’s namesake. Mellow mashed avocado and sour chive cream cheese play off tangy tomatoes and the bite of red onions on a blanket of scrambled eggs, hash brown, bacon, lettuce, and a razor sharp melted cheddar, held together by a bagel.
Meanwhile, the Ultimate Croissant more than earns its name. It’s similar to the New Yorker but replaces traditional bacon with applewood smoked bacon. It also pulls flavors together with a delectable slathering of house-made garlic aioli. And, as the name would suggest, it serves this scrumptiousness on a buttery light croissant.
On the sweeter side, regulars and newbies alike rave about the Berry Ricotta French Toast brought to decadent life with house-made compote and ricotta. But the more adventurous may find themselves swayed by the Oreo Waffles.
The Most Beloved Dish
However, the coup de gras of dishes offered by Love You Latte is hands down the Short Rib Sandwich. Pairing braised short rib with melted mozzarella, this sandwich sets off a fireworks finale of flavor with pickled red onions, garlic aioli, and arugula. Served on a substantial French baguette, it’s known for turning rookies into regulars.
The Glendale Coffee Shop’s Most Creative Concoctions
But since this is technically a Glendale coffee shop, there should be coffee, right? Oh, there’s coffee. Pretty much any kind you can imagine.
The Pink Latte is a crowd favorite with its double shot of espresso tempered with house-made organic vanilla bean syrup and milk. But it gets its distinctive cotton candy coloring from exotic organic pitaya (a.k.a. dragon fruit). And Stephen cites the Dirty Chai Latte as her personal favorite.
But the drink that most exemplifies the spirit of the Glendale coffee shop? That would be the Butterfly Pea Tea Latte, colloquially known as the Blue Latte. This latte utilizes an all-natural butterfly pea flower that is steeped in-house to get the striking blue color. House-made organic vanilla bean syrup is used to sweeten it. Between the vibrant colors, time-tested dedication, and complex flavors that go into this latte, it perfectly represents the Love You Latte spirit.
Fueled by caffeine and dreams, Stephen has plans for Love You Latte’s future. But in the meantime, she’s keeping those close to the chest. For now, you can explore their menu, at once comfortable and exotic, by visiting them at their flagship location:
Love You Latte, 275 W Lexington Dr, Glendale, CA 91203
M – F: 8am – 8pm
Weekends: 9am – 2pm