You don’t need an owl’s invitation to visit L.A.’s latest Harry Potter-themed haven. All you need to do is venture Downtown.
Nimbus Coffee sits just a few blocks from L.A. Live, and the whimsical new café is dishing out lattes, pastries, giggle waters and vegan shakes with all the trappings of a trip into the world of J.K. Rowling’s best-selling series.
Near the door, a woman in a grey Ravenclaw sweatshirt types with the Hogwarts house’s signature studiousness on a laptop. At the tables in back, a group of cloak-clad guests wave wands brought from home. Seated on the purple velvet couch in the corner—the one near the massive hanging portrait of Prince (the placard underneath? “Half Blood Prince”)—there’s a trio wearing replica necklaces of Hermione Granger’s time turner.
As of last week Potterheads have a new home, and it’s highly caffeinated.
Nimbus Coffee opened on June 18, as first reported by Los Angeles Magazine, with croissants, muffins, pound cakes and other assorted sweets to round out a full coffee program. (It’s no Honeydukes at the Wizarding World, but what is?) The coffee bar features beans from L.A.-based Tectonic Roasting Co. as drip coffee, cappuccinos, Americanos, lattes, pour-overs and espresso shots, while the menu of non-alcoholic juice infusions offer something bubbly and bright for those sipping sans caffeine.
These giggle waters are in fact fizzy drinks of house-made fruit compotes, such as the bright-red Watermelon Wesley (we see you, Weasleys), made with cucumber and lemon verbena, and the Blueberry Polyjuice, involving basil and hopefully no shapeshifting à la the namesake potion. Plant-based “mock shakes” involve almond milk, almond butter and cashew in flavors like a PB&J spin made with real strawberries.
This isn’t a sanctioned Harry Potter café, but proprietor (and law-school grad) Eviana Farrar teamed up with her mother, Shawn Farrar, to build out a coffee shop that pays homage without—hopefully—blatantly violating copyright law. We'd hate to ever lose the Nimbus; they’ve certainly imbued hard work and a lot of creativity into the space, a romantic and casual spot dotted with antique books, teapots, hourglasses, and playful portraits of celebrities as Rowling-esque characters (Mariah Carey gets harried, greying hair and a “Mariah Le Strange” plaque, while Morgan Freeman gets the Dumbledore treatment as “Albus Freeman”).
There’s even a wall-size newspaper—The Daily Tea—with “moving” pictures, not to mention a wand-themed photo op lit by a pink-neon “levizzle”; after all, this is a DTLA coffee shop: far too cool for a full “Wingardium Leviosa.”
Take a peek inside the new Nimbus Coffee, below, then hop your own Nimbus and head Downtown to check it out for yourself:
Nimbus coffee is now open Downtown at 1115 S Hope St, from 7am to 6pm Tuesday to Friday, and 8am to 4pm on Saturday and Sunday.