If you walk down Pardall Road, arrive at 6550 Pardall, take a right down the alleyway, and follow the arrows on the ground, you’ll find Isla Vista’s newest hidden gem: the United States of Espresso food truck. With its casual setting and convenient location, it’s the perfect spot to grab a coffee, tea or pastry.
United States of Espresso, also known as USofE, is an Australian-based coffee company specializing in espresso drinks, pastries and toasts. The food truck originated in Venice Beach, which is currently its only other location. According to their website, the name “United States of Espresso” comes from their mission to “bring espresso culture to local communities across the United States and unite coffee lovers.” The baristas, Kevin and Aivarey, told me that USofE will be a permanent fixture in Isla Vista and that they are “here for the long haul.”
The menu features their specialty, espresso, as well as a variety of espresso drinks — lattes, cappuccinos, flat whites and more. In addition to coffee, they also serve tea, hot chocolate, chai, matcha lattes and turmeric lattes. If you’re looking for food, try one of their pastries, their avocado toast or Aussie-inspired Vegemite toast.
I decided on an iced latte and a cream cheese danish. The cream cheese danish ($4.25) was rich and sweet – the perfect indulgent pastry. I also thought the latte was delicious, with a full body and smooth flavor, as well as notes of fruitiness and acidity. This comes from their signature blend of ethically sourced espresso beans which are “handcrafted to highlight the natural qualities of espresso.” Although a bit expensive ($5.75 for a plain iced latte), the high quality of the espresso makes it worth the price. According to Aivarey, they say “not all good coffee is espresso, but all espresso is good coffee.” They definitely live up to their motto!
So next time you’re craving an aromatic espresso or a homemade pastry, stop by United States of Espresso! They’re in Isla Vista Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and you can keep track of any updates by following their Instagram, @ivcoffeetruck.
A version of this article appeared on p. 12 of the March 3, 2022 print edition of the Daily Nexus.