The Trails Cafe

  • Veg-options Veg-options
    ( 6 reviews )

Fern Dell Dr (at Western Ave/Los Feliz Blvd, at base of Griffith Park), Los Angeles, California, USA, 90028

Serves meat, vegan options available. Little veg-friendly cafe in the woods on the side of the road and at the end of a walking trail (or beginning of another hike up to the Observatory). Order at the counter and eat at the outdoor tables amongst trees. Small but varied menu which includes organic espresso, vegetarian chili and vegan blue corn bread, avocado sandwich, granola and fruit. Specialty is their in-house baked goods which includes vegan items that are clearly marked. Uses environmentally friendly disposable utensil and to-go boxes. Open Mon-Sun 8:00am-5:00pm.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, American, Take-out, Non-veg

6 Reviews

First Review by bagwasher

Great trail side find! - Edit

Very cute longtime cafe stand at the base of a few Griffith Park trails. Amazing vegan blueberry banana muffin! Homemade almond milk option for coffee/espresso drinks.

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Cute little vegan friendly cafe in the woods - Edit

I had read about this place on happycow, and here's my The Trails Cafe review.

It's a delightful place. First, we walked through the Fern Dell trail (short, lovely, and green). At the end of the trail, there it was, the cute little cafe. Looked like a log cabin.

I started to almost drool just from looking at all the fresh baked goods on display: pies, tarts, cookies, scones, muffins - all handmade and fresh from the oven.

I've been here twice so far and have tried the vegan mushroom and cashew savory pie that came with a sage gravy dip (delicious though a bit greasy). The vegan cranberry and walnut tart was yummy, and the vegan blue corn bread was delicious. I've also tried the lemon lavender sugar cookie, and that was lovely as well.

The cafe also sells organic coffee drinks and a other foods.
Would love to return again. Highly recommend when in the area.

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Happy Trails for Vegans - Edit

It's obvious I haven't been hiking on the Los Feliz side of Griffith Park in some time or I would have discovered this little gem years ago. It is so refreshing to find a restaurant of any kind in a nature park that doesn't serve the standard chips and soda "vending machine" fare. In fact, I think The Trails should amend their roadside sign to somehow reflect that fact. "Pies, Soda, Coffee" does not accurately describe the amazing food they serve.

The first time I went I ordered the Ranger Pie which is a hand-pie with a puff pastry crust stuffed with veggie meat, potatoes, peas, celery, carrots, onions, perfectly seasoned with herbs and spices. I was surprised and delighted that it was served with a side of savory sage gravy! Imagine, piping hot, homemade VEGAN GRAVY in the middle of the wilderness! There was more than enough for the pie and I wished I had something else to dip in the left-overs -- it was that good!

A few days later my hubby and I stopped in after a strenuous hike. I was worried that there would be a long line of ravenous vegans and that they would be sold out of their vegan goodies, but the line was short, the food was served almost immediately and, once again, I left with a smile on my face. Here's what we ordered: one Mushroom and Cashew Pie and one order of Vegan Chili with Sage Blue Cornbread. I didn't have any of the pie as I don't like mushrooms (gasp!) but my hubby like it so much he almost got another one (and he finished ALL of his gravy). He had to help me finish my chili lunch because it was HUGE. The chili was medium-spiced and had three kinds of beans, tomatoes, peppers, corn and carrots. It tasted very fresh and not at all greasy. :) The carrots were cut into half moons, which was an interesting twist, but they could have been cooked little more, for my taste. The blue cornbread wedge was thick with a little bit of a crust, while still maintaining a moist, dense, cake-like center, with just a hint of sage. Quite possibly the perfect cornbread. A meal in itself, really.

I've gone back a few more times now and have tried the Snake Dog, the Agave Lemonade, an iced Green Tea Latte, and finally, their Mini Fruit Pies. All of the food was very good, but both the Strawberry-Rhubarb and the Cherry Pies are straight from heaven. Hubby loved the cherry pie's cinnamony oatmeal crumb topping. Both are large enough to share.

Kudos to Mickey Petralia for elevating the "snack hut" to a new level. Nature parks everywhere take note!

Pros: Excellent Food, Adorable Decor, Inexpensive

Cons: Closed on Mondays, Cash Only

1 Response
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ShellyBrown 09 Mar 2013 - Trails Cafe accepts credit cards. It is not cash only. So now the only con is that is closed one day a week!!  

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Great Little Cafe - Edit

I had the avocado sandwich which was very fresh, nicely prepared. I also had a delicious lemonade and cappuccino.
The outside seating area is lovely, and the setting in the park invites you to stay for a walk.
I also heard people raving about the pie, which I will be having on my return trip.

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Get there early! - Edit

Don't make the mistake I do each and every time. I tell myself as a reward for hiking up to the observatory I'll get a treat on the way down... well when you get down there the person in line in front of you will undoubtedly order the last vegan scone, pastry, etc! Twice in a row! You'd think I'd learn my lesson. Buy first, put it in your car or pack and enjoy up top while you're looking at the wonderful views. You can find tables in the cafeteria at the Observatory on the bottom floor.

Pros: great destination

Cons: sells out of vegan items

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Good vegan options - Edit

We recently visited this cafe after a hike in Griffith Park. Even though we had brought our own picnic we were delighted to find that this cafe had vegan pies. Their vegan items are clearly marked and the staff are helpful. The pies tasted great but could have been warmed a little more. They had sweet and savory pies.

Pros: Handy location, Tasty pies

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