The Coffee Shops That Fueled Our Launch

It all started this past Summer. The new Ideations team was getting ready to embark on a business venture together. It was growing, but we didn’t have a designated space to meet yet. We needed to find spaces that fueled our creativity, but also our stomachs while we initiated the pre-launch phase.

We started with The Merchant off of Long Beach Blvd. The Merchant is a newer provisions shop located in Bixby Knolls that sells everything from coffee and tea, to freshly baked goods. We absolutely loved it, and from there we began the unintended tradition of trying a new coffee shop for each of our meetings.

Along the way we discovered some amazing hidden gems in Long Beach, and appealed to our wanderlust as we scouted out our meeting locations. We visited so many great small businesses that we thought it was only right to share what we loved most about each of them!

The Merchant

The Merchant.jpg

The Merchant is where we first had the notion that working together on Ideations might actually be a possibility. We brainstormed over Iced Vanilla Lattes, Iced Mochas, a bacon cheddar scone, and a chocolate chip cookie. The Merchant deems themselves as putting “a modern twist on a country store,” and we couldn’t be more in love with their aesthetic. Every night the owner and baker Andrea Fleytas bakes simple and delicious baked goods to be served the next day. From brioche and sourdough to cinnamon rolls, you have to get there early if you want the best pickings! They also have a Provisions store next door that has everything from artisan goods to unique cookbooks. If you haven’t tried out the Merchant yet, be prepared to fall in love with the New Orleans, New York, and Paris inspired shop.

The Merchant is open Tuesday-Friday from 6 a.m. - 5 p.m. and 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Commodity Coffee


Finding Commodity Coffee actually happened by accident. Emily, our Digital Strategist, was with a friend headed to Urban Americana and saw the sign for coffee across the street and decided to check it out. She was immediately struck by the simplicity and loved the open and rustic floor plan. There were two motorcycles parked in the back of the store. Conversation flowed easily with the owner and barista about the history behind Commodity Coffee. The shop’s fresh donut and pastries and fit right in with the culture of the Zaferia Neighborhood. When we finally had our Ideations team meeting there we had a great time and enjoyed the bright and friendly environment.

Commodity Coffee is open daily from 7 a.m. - 5 p.m.!  

Caffe Bene

It was surely a sign from the universe how we ended up at Caffe Bene (also our featured image) for one of our meetings. Emily was dropping off a friend at a restaurant in the shopping center on the corner of Bellflower and PCH and wound up parking in front of the Cafe. She texted Jordan, the Brand Designer, saying that they should try it out one day and in the same hour, Jennifer, the founder, messaged the team to suggest the space for their next meeting.

They have a delicious menu with everything from pastries and panini’s to sweet breads, amazing coffees and teas. They also have tons of great seating with plugs nearby which makes ideal great for studying or meetings!

Caffe Bene is open on Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. - 11 p.m., 8a-Midnight on Friday and Saturday, and 9 a.m. - 11 p.m. on Sunday.

Portfolio Coffeehouse


Deemed “Retro row’s Finest Coffeehouse,” Portfolio was another great local meeting spot. Located on 4th and Junipero Ave., this is definitely a classic Long Beach coffee shop. Their mexican mocha was delicious, as well as their bagel and yogurt. They have a great selection of sweets and pastries, and offer more hearty options as well. Portfolio is always bustling and it is a great place to experience the diversity and culture in Long Beach. There were plenty of seating options located in the front area, as well as in the back dining area. It is the perfect place to go when you need some inspiration to feed your soul!

Portfolio Coffeehouse is open Monday-Friday from 5:30 a.m. - 9 p.m. and 6:30 a.m. - 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Berlin Bistro

 Photo from Berlin Bisro

Photo from Berlin Bisro

We finally took it over to the East Village Arts District in Downtown Long Beach when we tried out the Berlin Bistro (Fun fact: It’s owned by Portfolio Coffeehouse). It is located on 4th street, next door to Fingerprints. Not only do they serve great coffee and pastries, but they have a breakfast/brunch menu that was mouthwatering. They had options like a Greek Omelette, a fruit bowl, french toast, and much more. Berlin Bistro has a very friendly atmosphere and was a really great place to enjoy delicious menu options while still getting business done. What’s also great is you have the option to be seated and waited on while getting business done, or one can simply order coffee at the counter for those on the go! Once you’re done you have to take a stroll around the other great local small businesses in the area. You won’t be disappointed!

Berlin Bistro is open Monday-Friday from 6:30 a.m. - 9 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. - 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.