Last year, a lot of exciting developments happened around the historic PacMutual Building in Downtown LA. Exciting eateries like Tender Greens, Le Pain Quotidien, and Earth Bar signed on to open here while an amazing historic courtyard — sandwiched within the PacMutual and hidden since post-WWII — was revealed for the first time since being covered up. And the good news continues to come out of PacMutual as another exciting eatery called Tartine is slated to open later this year.
Located near 6th and Olive, Tartine (not to be confused with the other one in San Francisco) will be a new French bakery — a boulangerie, pâtisserie, and café to be exact — brought to us by French native Frederic Soulies. He was swayed to consider downtown instead of Culver City when broker Franck Morineau of WilshireWest introduced him to Downtown LA, which immediately captivated Soulies enough to alter his decision to open here instead of the Westside.
Currently under construction on the east side of PacMutual along Olive St, Soulies is striving to bring a slice of the authentic Parisian experience to Downtown LA with traditional French breakfast and lunch complemented by a 600 square foot outdoor patio dining space like those you would find in the French capital.
The 3,700 square foot restaurant space designed by architect firm bB|A Studios will evoke a warm and welcoming ambiance using “earthy” building materials like reclaimed woods, natural clay bricks, and Carrara marble complemented by the exposed ceilings and brick walls original to the PacMutual Building. The space will center around a large oven allowing restaurant patrons to peer into the bread making process live. In addition, underneath a beautiful new living vertical green wall (click here to see what it’ll look like) will be a see-through fireplace between the indoor dining area and outdoor patio connecting the two spaces.
The word tartine, which literally means open-face sandwich, is the way a day begins for most people in France according to Soulies. “A coffee and a buttered tartine” to start the morning off. His new downtown bakery will be based on a small-scale bakery tradition using natural leaven (yeast) and organic flours.
“Our breads with organic flours will be kneaded, shaped by hand, placed on a linen cloth and baked each day at the bakery in our oven,” Soulies explained. “We are proud to use a long-fermentation and a high-hydration process that produces naturally nutritious breads with complex flavor profiles.”
In addition to fresh breads, Tartine will have artisanal and gourmet sandwiches, tailor made salads, daily home-made soup, a wide selection of French cheeses, rich desserts and chocolates, organic coffee and espresso, and yes, there will be a large selection of wine as well (80 different kinds planned) sourced from mainly France and California. For those in a rush, Tartine will offer a grab-and-go section for breakfast and lunch.
“Our everyday goal is to provide great tasting food that is not only convenient and affordable, but freshly made from scratch using locally sourced organic ingredients to provide the best quality to our customers,” said Soulies.
Tartine is slated to open in late summer 2014. Hours will be Mon and Tue from 7 am to 7 pm, Wed thru Fri from 7 am to 9 pm, and Sat from 8 am to 3 pm. Later happy hours will offer diners tapas with a large selection of French cheeses and charcuterie to go along with that glass of wine.