Near the corner of Santa Monica’s Broadway and 26th, a narrow alley leads to the newly opened Goodboybob. The tucked-away café has elements similar to many other third-wave shops: exposed brick, natural light, salvaged wood, and a menu filled with local ingredients. But the marble coffee bar is merely one attraction in the space; the other is a virtual reality studio—one of the best in the country.
This special project, brought to life by Tool of North America founder Erich Joiner, represents an innovative idea to blend the creative worlds of coffee and entertainment to make a place for the intersection of culture, connection, and art. The VR studio is visible to all guests that enter and will be in active use during business hours as well as after hours.
Dunsmuir Institute Architects and fullBRANCH led the interior and exterior design and construction for Goodboybob, showcasing the shared space by using a “temple of material senses” including old factory brick, marble mosaic, a hand-painted menu by the shop’s brand designer Madeleine Ignon, and old railroad wood trestle. In front of the VR theater is a private lounge space reserved for Tool employees separated by glass panels and a blackened steel screen.
Goodboybob welcomes guests with a large walk up L-shaped marble finished bar and includes an outside multiple tier design seating for patrons to take a load off and enjoy their conversations. Though the new coffee spot is housed on a creative campus with over twenty production offices and more than 500 employees, Goodboybob is open to the public as well.
“I decided to open a coffee shop to offer great coffee and delicious food to the immediate community of writers, editors, and artists in the surrounding offices as well as locals who live and work in the area. It’s fun to have the bar share space with our VR theater as well. Goodboybob can be the place to come grab a coffee and bump into someone you’ve never met before. I hope it will create opportunities for meaningful in-person conversation,” Joiner says.
Tyler Wells, a hospitality consultant and coffee dynamo, was hired to help drive and implement Joiner’s vision for Goodboybob; Ryan Fisher (Commonwealth Coffee Roasters, Progress Coffee) will lead the bar program.
Coffees at will rotate seasonally. The opening slate includes house espresso—Colombia Valentía de los Pijaos—and filtered coffee options: Kenya Nyeri Gatuyaini, Rwanda Kanzu Lot 17 and Colombia Cauca Maria Magnolia Acosta. The first Friday will also feature special brew Guatemala Acatenango Geisha Lot 2.
Every Friday, Goodboybob will feature a special micro-lot for pour-over and espresso, including geshas, Cup of Excellence auction lots, and single variety lots from Ethiopia.
In addition to a full beverage menu, which includes seasonal teas from Song and nitro cold-brew, the café offers a delicious food menu with both breakfast and lunch items, rotating daily sandwiches (both meat and veggie options) created with Gjusta bread, pastries from Sugarbloom Bakery, Noodle Jar (think a better version of cup of noodles), and Almond Butter and Jam Toast made with Welovejam and Solstice Canyon Almond Butter.