Written by:
Ryan Thompson
Photographed by:
Caleb Thal

Tags: Eat

Map It: 1820 Industrial St.


Alley Chats

Within the bustling, industrial grid of Downtown LA’s east side lies a haven from 18-wheeled madness. Here, brick covers old railroad tracks, vines scale the walls, and strands of lights illuminate outdoor picnic tables. This haven is Daily Dose Cafe, and it’s the perfect spot to get one’s daily fix of serenity.


It was 2009 when owner Sarkis Vartanian came across the peculiar location along Industrial Street. An unassuming and hidden walkway divided two warehouses, connecting Mill St. to Industrial St. The normal eye would see the space as simply a walkway, but Mr. Vatanian saw something else.


Months earlier, he had stumbled upon a chic outdoor space during a trip to Toronto that inspired his vision for an urban garden nestled among east side warehouses. Daily Dose Cafe personifies the Arts District, and maybe that’s why it’s such a neighborhood favorite. “We got lucky with this crowd,” Vartanian said. “They love the Arts District. They love us.” Over four and a half years, Daily Dose has kept true to its mantra: serving good coffee, food, and desserts . . . daily.


If you’re just stopping for coffee, chief barista Ebbie Echeverria insists on the Iced Buena Vista. With caramelized brown sugar and two shots of espresso, it’s the house’s signature drink, served extra frothy by request.


At lunchtime, Vartanian insists on leaving meat out of the picture. He’s not a vegetarian, but says he can deliver the same flavor and nutrients without turkey or chicken. He serves first-timers The Guildsmith. Filled with a warm center of sautéed cheeses and topped with tomato, guacamole, mint, Aleppo pepper, and the house-made chipotle tomato sauce on a warm baguette, it’s truly a culinary masterpiece. Like the other dishes on the menu, its an intersection of nutrition and taste.


In a city known for its diverse culinary makeup, Daily Dose Cafe’s cuisine plays to American staples. No, you won’t find burgers and milkshakes here; but rather a fresh and filling cuisine. Vartanian, who also wears the head chef hat, takes pride in using organics: “It doesn’t take much to make good food”. He had only aspired to open a simple coffee shop, but ended up creating his hidden oasis that speaks to the heart and stomachs of the Arts District’s faithful.