Coffee Break: Obet & Del’s

Cheerful mural inside the entrance of Black and Filipinx-owned Obet & Del’s.

Obet & Del’s in the heart of Thai Town is my retro coffee shop escape these days. Whenever I need to just get away from my environs for a break, I drive across the city to my old neighborhood just get to one of their delicious iced coffees or teas and a Sugarbloom Bakery pastry and bask for a moment in their airy, cheerful, and colorful space filled with natural light. Post-pandemic, I’d love to follow the different parts of the bright mural that greets you as you walk in, like Dorothy following the yellow brick road in the Wizard of Oz, just to see where it all goes.

Menu plus Bicycle Coffee and teas for sale.

The menu, inspired in part by Filipino flavors and Thai Town, has all your well-made hot and iced espresso, cold brew, and drip coffee drinks made from Bicycle Coffee, plus an assortment of teas, matcha, lemonade, ice cream, and a kids menu with fun items like “Fruit Tea Punch” and “Ube Milk,” that I want to try enough that I might feign having a child. I always look a little lost when I walk in, because I think I know what I want, but then my eyes get too big staring at the exciting menu board and the pastry case. With the summer heat, I find myself coming back again and again for two favorite iced drinks, depending on whether I’m in a tea or coffee mood – the Thai Town Latte and the Filipino Iced Coffee. Both just feel like such a treat, and make trekking through the dodgy freeway driving that is LA pandemic traffic these days totally worth the hassle.

The Thai Town Latte is a tea latte made up of sweetened plant-based oatmilk, cha yen, star anise, vanilla, and sweet tamarind. It’s far lighter than the traditional Thai Iced Tea it resembles at first blink and not as sugary and creamy (though I do love a good Thai Iced Tea). I love the scent of the softly floating star anise that transports you right away when you take a flavorful sip.

The Filipino Iced Coffee is what I get when I need a happy kick in the pants to restart me during a mid-day slump. A sweet and creamy ube oatmilk latte, served with a single origin dark roast, it’s just as “powerfully caffeinated” as the menu description suggests. Like the Thai Town Latte, it’s a wonderful sensory experience. I love the delightful violet color of the ube oatmilk at the bottom of the cup. I never swirl it all together so I can get a hit of the milk on its own before the dark roast wakes me up right.

Sugarbloom Bakery Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Their pastry case sourced from Taiwanese-Am owned Sugarbloom Bakery also has some stand-out hits. I’ve tried the savory Sour Cream Biscuit, Blueberry Donut, and the Chocolate Chunk Cookie over my trips – and all were incredibly delicious. But, hot tip, if you’re pastry and confection-inclined, get to the shop in the morning because they tend to sell out of these gems as the day gets later. My greatest regret about Obet & Del’s is that I moved away from the neighborhood before they opened. Otherwise, I’d be here first thing in the morning for the perfect, happy-making coffee and pastry experience every day of the week.

Obet and Del’s is located at 5233 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027.

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