Happening: Cafe Desmo 2011

HFL, Positions -



If Italian and vintage bikes are considered sexy, then walking around this year’s Cafe Desmo 2011 at Pro Italia in Glendale, CA was a lot like checking out a porn convention. Everyone hangs out and has a great time laughing, ogling and awkwardly touching exotic toys that shake and vibrate at various rpm when you turn them on. I could have taken lots of pictures of over 2,000 sweaty dudes in leather and denim staring inappropriately at inanimate objects, but that might have caused me to reflect on the possibility of my own perviness. Okay, okay, so maybe I did some touching too. Click below for the feature.

Happening: Cafe Desmo 2011

  • Deep6Dive

    Dude you’re making some photoshopped article about ducati’s but you missed Ducstock in Barber. Vintage motorcycles on an american track. I guess that’s the best LA is offering……and I paid paid for this, thank god I’m FTW……

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      You don’t like it, I get it. So now I’m going to be just as clear.

      I’m not going to go out my way, spend my own money for flights and hotel and food just to cover some one-brand exclusionary event that can’t be bothered to send a press release, much less a friendly invitation. I’d much rather shoot homegrown stuff like the Brooklyn Invitational, Cafe Desmo, a Deth Killers Rally, or the OC Bike Cop Rodeo. Every day of the week.

      Oh, you want vintage bikes on an American track? ARHMA, dude.

      • Deep6Dive

        yeah but those cops didn’t let you on their track, rally’s are on roads and they have limits I dont know how far they went (miles), the other two sound like bike shows. I just did that all in a weekend on top of seeing some of the most amazing motorcycles that were just road from NM to AL (miles). I can make a stupid pdf full of photos for you, just calm down. It will explain everything. Remember you’ll meet some of the best people on two wheels…….the arhma is what brought on the pfd. FTW.

        • Richard

          I’d love to see your PDF full of photos. If you can do it better than Grant and Wes, have at it. We’re waiting……

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      if that’s photoshopped, then Grant must be superhuman (as in, damn, that was fast!). Are you insulting his ability as a photographer? Personally, I was just looking at those gorgeous pictures, excited to see the ol’ Pro Italia shindig in a way I’d never seen it before- from the eyes of a true aficionado of the details of these bikes. I just like riding them and sorta like looking at them, so I never saw Cafe Desmo quite like this. I didn’t even bother going this year, opting instead to ride my bicycle in CicLAvia. But I’m really glad Grant’s on the Best Coast now so we can see more of his gorgeous photographs.

  • JRl

    I’ll take the Missione R Desmo, thanks!

    • http://pinkyracer.com pinkyracer

      good luck. they don’t plan on manufacturing ANY. They’re just showing it off for publicity. And I hate them for that. I totally know what blueballs feels like every time I see that bike and the MotoCzysz.

      • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

        Yeah, that’s like a dude trying to tell a woman he knows what going through a menstrual cycle feels like.

  • Campisi

    There’s just something special about an 850 Le Mans, regardless of series or viewing angle.

  • Thomas

    Missed these features from Grant in the last months. More frequent please ;-)

    • Ceolwulf


  • Scott-jay

    Bravo, Grant!
    Virago rat bike and closing MV…
    Brand exclusive bike gathering bore me compared to Subject gathering and events like Barber, Mid-Ohio, etc.

  • ak

    I really enjoyed this. The picture of the little guy on the mini moto and what appears to be grandpa in the background is priceless.

  • jonoabq

    What’s the B&W motorcycle about nine photos in with the wrapped pipe?

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      Pretty sure that’s a Virago.

  • robotribe

    I dig this event; so jealous. The parked bikes of attendants can be just as interesting. Mr. Buell was there last year. Was there a slow ride up the Crest this year as well?

    • Sean Smith

      They decided that maybe the hosted Crest ride was a bad plan and not worth the trouble. No one seemed to mind.

      • robotribe

        I can see why; last year’s was more of a hassle than fun.

  • noone1569

    There should be an 1190RS there too.

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      I’m going back today for a little private photo session with that one.

      • noone1569

        Awesome, can’t wait. Bet it beats the crappy pics of the naked one I sent you guys. LOL

  • noone1569

    That picture of the kid with the sunglasses on the baby duck. . . Awesome. You should find a way to send him that picture so he can use it to get laid in ~13-15 years.

    • http://www.desmoworks.com desmoworks

      That kid won’t need the photo to get laid. He was rocking that bike all day long with pure style. He’s all set I’d say!

  • andy727

    Outstanding feature!

  • super20

    Speaking of Buells was that the flip-up seat from the original RS 16 pics or so into the gallery?

    • noone1569

      I’m thinking so after looking back at it now.

  • http://www.firstgenerationmotors.blogspot.com Emmet

    love the last photo, leaves so much for the imagination. also just realized it’s Shinya Kimura’s bike. awesome!

    • http://hellforleathermagazine.com Grant Ray

      Thanks! That’s actually Shinya starting the bike before he drove it home.

  • KP

    Awesome content. Moar!

  • M

    that’s a nice lookin’ gp 550. they’re usually kind of ungainly in person, but something about that one pops.