If your hobbies include sitting for hours, reading the paper, running into friends and losing track of time over turmeric lattes and healthy bites, then we have just the cafe for you: West~bourne, a new LA-centric eatery in New York’s popular SoHo neighborhood.
So how did founder Camilla Marcus, a Los Angeles native, bring a dose of California to New York? She started by conceiving a vegetable-focused menu set inside a space designed to conjure up the irreverence of 1960s Los Angeles. Think dishes such as Center Your Chai with coconut chai pudding, rose halva and toasted almond crumble and brown rice bowls like Over the Rainbowl with lentil falafel, sweet potatoes and jalapeño tahini to be enjoyed inside cozy nooks brimming with bohemian pillows and palm-tree prints.
Inside the eatery, which has been designed by an LA-based firm, patrons will also find a small shop with a selection of products created by LA-based artisans, including Robert Siegel Studio custom mugs, Inna Jams, Grove 45 extra virgin olive oil, Norden candles and PURE dog food. Even better, Marcus has partnered with the Robin Hood Foundation, which means a portion of every purchase made at the eatery benefits The Door, an organization that supports local job training. “People are willing to go that extra mile and care and contribute to something that matters,” Marcus has said of her decision to infuse a non-profit model into the business.
In addition, on each table at West~bourne you’ll find a guide packed with recommendations on where to dine, shop and enjoy art in the SoHo neighborhood. Suggestions include everything from dinner at Le Coucou to vintage shopping at What Goes Around Comes Around. For the art-inclined, Marcus advises going to check out The Drawing Center a not-for-profit fine arts institution that focuses on historical and contemporary illustrations. The point being that this little spot on Sullivan Street feels blissfully bi-coastal; packed with equal parts California charm and local New York pride.
Photography: Connie Zhou | West~bourne