Coffee Tomo is just off Sawtelle, next door to where Tsukemen ramen will be opening at the end of the month. I read about it in this last week's LA TImes and decided to give it a try Sunday
Like Conservatory, all their beans are roasted small batches in-house, in the front-of-the-house actually, as the coffee roaster is just to your left when you walk in. Unlike Conservatory, all their coffee drinks are served pour over. I initially ordered their Yirgacheffe, but they suggested I try another because they had just been roasted that day. As coffee geeks will know, beans need a day or two to de-gas after roasting before they're at their best. I tried the brazilian. I got it for there, and they asked if I wanted a ceramic cup, I said yes and they served it to me in a to-go cup, oh well. The pour over was excellent, better than Intelligentsia. Overall I'd grade the coffee a phenomenal A-, only topped on the westside by Funnel Mill.
I also tried one of their pretzels...
I got the red bean and cheese one, this is a horseshoe shaped pretzel, with some decorative knots tied on it. It was fresh (took about ten minutes) and steaming hot when served to me. Stuffed inside the pretzel was a combination of red bean and mozzerella cheese. the combination is an odd one, but to me (a lover of red bean filled pastry) very delicious. The pretzel was not large, but it would be fine to share because it was very rich--it is quite a lot of cheese stuffed in that pretzel. My biggest caveat is that I'm not sure how well it went with the coffee, tea might be a more appropriate order if ordering a pretzel, they have some sweeter pastry offerings that I may try next time I go.
I'm looking forward to going back, trying some of their other pretzels and other food options. Next time I intend to try the espresso, which sounds absolutely fascinating, based on the LA Times review. I've so rarely had a good espresso that I have high hopes Coffee Tomo can become my go-to.
Also, I noted that there is a new ramen place, Tsukemen, opening next door to them at the end of June. They had a sign up which indicated that their opening or soft opening would be announced on facebook, but I couldn't seem to find them on facebook, at least not in English, and my rudimentary abilities to read kana has apparently disintegrated away to nothing in the past few years. :-p It looks to me that Tsukemen is a popular chain in Japan, ala Santouku, but I'm not certain about that. If it is though, I'm very excited, hopefully this will be the first decent ramen on Sawtelle.
930 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA
18707 Devonshire St, Northridge, CA 91324