(Photo by Madelyn Esses)

Opinion

Review: The message behind La La Land Kind Cafe

La La Land Kind Cafe is not only a popular cafe but also a restaurant with the purpose for spreading kindness and helping foster youth gain life skills. In 2019, Francois Reihani, a 2021 Forbes 30 under 30 honoree, founded the cafe. They have four locations: three in Dallas and one recently opened on Montana…
<a href="https://highschool.latimes.com/author/madelynesses/" target="_self">Madelyn Esses</a>

Madelyn Esses

November 11, 2021

La La Land Kind Cafe is not only a popular cafe but also a restaurant with the purpose for spreading kindness and helping foster youth gain life skills.

In 2019, Francois Reihani, a 2021 Forbes 30 under 30 honoree, founded the cafe. They have four locations: three in Dallas and one recently opened on Montana Ave. in Santa Monica.

The colorful shop is filled with inspiring quotes on merchandise and around the cafe as well as accents of their signature bright white and yellow. Their mission is to spread kindness and embrace one’s authentic self. In addition, they believe that people are more important than profits by prioritizing their workers and customers, while still having a successful business. They also are encouraging businesses to give back to their workers and community.

While people are lining up for their matcha lattes and avocado toast, many do not know the message behind the creation of the cafe. In 2017, the owners of La La Land created the “We are One Project” to help teens who have aged out of foster care become self-sufficient adults. Initially, they provided mentorship, housing, job placement and therapy, but they found that many employers required job experience.

This new program helps teens earn work experience, learn how to work with others, build meaningful connections and add a job on their resume. A percentage of their profits go to this organization, which allows businesses to come together in order to employ foster youth. 

La La Land provides an eight week internship program for the foster youth where they teach life skills, on the job training, customer service training and mentorship. Thereafter, at the end of the program, they continue helping with job placement, housing, schooling, and therapy.

La La Land also hires special needs individuals, who work together with the foster youth in unison. 

“I admire how La La Land makes it their priority to take care of the wellbeing of the community, their employees, and customers. They manage to have a positive and upbeat cafe, while serving delicious food at the same time!” Esha Sangha said.

They are definitely a classic LA restaurant with a separate vegan menu and sections dedicated only to different toasts, lattes, and teas on their main menu. Their specialty drinks include a Lavender Bloom Matcha Latte, which is purple, and a blue Butterfly Matcha Latte inspired Fruity Pebbles. Their “truffle burrata” and “la la dream toast” are some of their most asked-for items.

The combination of positive message and delicious food provides a special dining experience that La La Land hopes will spread to other restaurants throughout the country.

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