Nestled in the heart of Downtown LA, Frederic and Fabienne Soulies’ bakery and cafe offers a vast, eclectic French cuisine, pastries, and a full European-style coffee program beautifully paired with a genuine French cafe experience.
Pitchoun, which translates into French as “kiddo,” is tucked under the landmarked, historic Sentry Building across from Pershing Square.
Being no stranger to the baking and french cuisine, the Soulies’ menu balances the traditional french bakery, a European experience, and the SoCal prerequisite of sustainable, local, and organic ingredients.
Walking into the cafe on a empty, caffeine-flooded stomach is like a match made in food-heaven. If it’s not the crisp, alluring aroma of fresh baked baguettes and espresso in the morning it’s the savory redolence of pizza just pulled from the oven in the afternoons.The low-lit ambiance, drizzled with bright colors of the macaroons and pre-packaged meringues is complemented by high ceiling and creates a an intimate, home-y vibe with a urban, modern twist.
After perusing the entire pastry case, telling yourself, No! You can’t have one of everything, it’s time to butcher your French. After ordering, you’re handed a laminated, numbered table marker—one of many that Federic’s grandmother sent him from France. Details, folks. The dining area is warm and welcoming: interior walls are lined with bricks, genuine wood tables and chairs, and gray-scale, framed photographs of Pitchouns hovering around the cafe. Inspired by Fabienne’s childhood exposure to a Italian-Mediterranean cuisine, Pitchoun’s menu offers a vast array of European-style dishes, from the Brussels salad and the Frankfurt sausages, to French crepes and the classic tartines, a classic French dish served as an open-faced sandwich on different varieties of bread topped with a customized spread.
Served on a slice of wood, the North Pole is definitely the go-to dish if you’re looking for something light with a full-range of flavors. Not to be outdone, most of Pitchoun’s dishes are served with mixed greens topped with a tangy, slightly sweet vinaigrette. Pitchoun also makes a hell of a croissant, each one has that perfect level of flakiness, with a slight buttery taste.
Ideal for client meetings, a day date with yourself or your bonafide, or simply for the best breakfast in Downtown, Pitchoun serves up a surprising level of French authenticity in a city that bodes many options.Photography by Anne Fishbein