No, there aren’t any potions here, but the coffee sure is magical. Elixir, located in the heart of La Jolla, CA, is an espresso and wine bar that also offers a unique food menu to pair with both kinds of beverages. A sleek modern look, in-house bean grinding, and inviting baristas makes this cafe appealing to anyone.
To quench coffee thirsts, we sipped two classic coffee options and one tea latte. House coffee is the cheapest on the menu, though quality isn’t sacrificed. The Americano, another budget-friendly option was simple as expected — dark, smooth and so easy to drink that I finished my cup in minutes without even noticing. We enjoyed both without any added milk, cream or sugar. Our chai tea latte, on the other hand, was far from simple. To start, Elixir earns bonus points for the intricacy of the latte art; the baristas truly have advanced artistic ability. The next point of interest was the texture. Foamed milk is a core part of any latte, though the consistency of it varies from cafe to cafe. This foam is as soft as a cloud and just airy enough to introduce the taste of the drink ever so delicately. At last, the taste; the chai blend at Elixir is actually quite sweet, rather than lightly spiced as is traditional. We learned this and were shocked that the barista hadn’t even added sugar to their naturally wonderful mix. Overall the espresso and tea menu at Elixir cannot be beat … and just wait til you hear about the food.
The Boards and Bites options can be paired with the selection of wines available, though we enjoyed them with our coffee. The Brie and Pear Bites consist of six small toast points with slices of cheese and pear stacked on top, and drizzled honey to finish off the beautiful presentation. The brie is incredibly soft alongside the slightly baked pear; and the honey adds just the right about of sweetness atop the toast. This is a larger appetizer than expected, but it still left room in our tummies for crepes.
The Classic and Turkey crepes were raved about so we decided to dive in. The Classic crepe upholds great presentation standards, served on a long plate with drizzled Nutella and powdered sugar on top. The Turkey crepe, however, is boring in presentation but made up for it with the sheer amount packed inside. Cheese dominated, with some spinach leaves and a few slices of salty turkey. The taste is a stark difference from the vast sweetness of the Classic, stuffed with solely rich Nutella and any chocolate lovers dream. Both served warm, these breakfast items are satisfying and delicious.
Though breakfast offerings are impressive, lunch options are not to be overlooked. We indulged in Chicken Pesto Flatbread, which has a thin crisp crust, a generous amount of melted cheese, tons of arugula and sliced tomatoes that added even more flavor, and a balsamic drizzle. As good as this flatbread appears, it wasn’t as pesto-like as it’s name suggests. This option is best for those looking for something less sweet and more savory.
After such an good meal with amazing coffee, you’d think it can’t get any better. Think again! Think gelato. Chocolate and vanilla are available for the purists but we recommend the Tiramisu and Nutella flavors. Tiramisu is incredible; you can taste ever layer of this Italian pastry throughout the swirls of this smooth dessert. Hopefully you haven’t had enough Nutella yet either, because this flavor is also a must try.
Good for breakfast, lunch, coffee hour, happy hour or dessert hour, Elixir dominates the clock. This espresso bar has great coffee, an array of wine options and cheeses board, attractive crepes, and phenomenal service. Northern San Diego’s gem cafe is definitely the place to be.