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Beaujolais Boulangerie. This charming bakery and lunch spot is delightful — or, as one friend happily sighed, “paradise.” Breakfast is a Continental affair: coffee, baked goods, juice. But the lunch menu, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., offers an appealing selection of soups, quiches, sandwiches and meal-size salads. 1661 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock, (323) 255-5133. Mon.–Fri. 7 a.m.–5 p.m., Sat.–Sun. 8 a.m.–5 p.m. No alcohol. Takeout. Street parking. Nothing over $10. MC, V. French. MH ¢ ¤ *
Clementine. Annie Miler, a food-historian-turned-chef, makes delicious versions of great American regional favorites at her sunny breakfast, lunch and takeout café across from the Century City Shopping Mall. 1751 Ensley Ave., (310) 552-1080. Mon.–Fri. 7 a.m.–7 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.–5 p.m. No Alcohol. Parking in rear lot. AE, CB, DC, MC, V. Entrées $7–$10. California. MH * ¦
Dish. With lots of light, lots of room and smart, friendly servers, Dish is a prime example of the new American coffee shop. The look is scrubbed-California-farmhouse, and the all-American menu showcases our national love of sugar, salt, meat and crunch. 734 Foothill Blvd., La Cañada, (818) 790-5355. Breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon.–Fri. 7 a.m.–9:30 p.m., Sat.–Sun. 7 a.m.–10 p.m. Beer and wine. Lot parking. AE, D, DC, MC, V. Entrées $7.95–$15.95. American. MH ¤
Europane. Pastry savant Sumi Chang, once the breakfast chef at Campanile, runs this inspired bakery/café. Her croissants are like crispy butter, her chocolate biscotti a study of cacao’s dark, sweet depths. More and more regulars — soccer moms, Caltech profs, Art Center students, chefs, writers — seem to live there part time. 950 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, (626) 577-1828. Mon.–Sat. 7 a.m.–5:30 p.m., Sun. to 2 p.m. No alcohol. Street parking. Cash only. Pastries and sandwiches $5.75–$7.50. California Bakery. MH *
Flossie’s. Flossie’s, located on the eastern edge of Torrance, is the closest you can get in Los Angeles to Mississippi boarding-house cuisine. What Flossie’s serves is mostly daily specials, except for the perfect — and I do mean perfect — Southern fried chicken, which is always on hand. 3566 Redondo Beach Blvd., Torrance, (310) 352-4037. Lunch and dinner Tues.–Thurs. 11 a.m.–8 p.m., Fri. 11 a.m.–9 p.m., Sat. noon–9 p.m., Sun. noon–7 p.m. No alcohol. Takeout. Lot parking. Cash only. Food for two $12–$18. Southern. JG ¢
Grub. Grub is a charming incongruity in the concrete heart of postproduction country. The coffee is a lot fresher than Charbucks, and they serve a homemade ginger ale with fresh lime wedges in a tall cup rimmed with raw sugar. Try the decadent After School Special, a grilled cheese sandwich made with Cheddar and Swiss, on sourdough and fried in, oh, maybe a half-stick of butter. 911 Seward St., Hollywood, (323) 461-3663. Lunch Mon.–Fri. 11 a.m.–3 p.m. No alcohol. Takeout and delivery. Street parking. AE, D, MC, V. Entrées $3.95–$10.95. American. Nancy Rommelmann $ ¤ Ü * ¦
Julienne. Beethoven scherzos skitter through the plant-strewn patio, and regulars park their dogs just outside it. The basic currency of the restaurant seems to be the sandwich, including soft chicken-salad sandwiches of a sort many of us haven’t tasted since the Bullocks Wilshire tearoom closed down. 2649 Mission St., San Marino, (626) 441-2299. Mon.–Fri. 7 a.m.–3:30 p.m., Sat. 8 a.m.–4 p.m. Dinner during summer only. No alcohol. Lot parking. AE, MC, V. Entrées $8.95–$15.95. California. JG $ *
The Kitchen. Here is the quintessential Silver Lake canteen. Its former subtitle — “Lunch to Late Night” — reflects the circadian rhythms of its neighborhood clientele. The interior is early East Village — deep colors, battered tables, crumbling cement, loud music. 4348 Fountain Ave., Silver Lake, (323) 664-3663. Open Mon.–Fri. 5 p.m.–mid., Sat. noon–2:30 a.m., Sun. noon–10 p.m. No alcohol. Lot parking. AE, D, MC, V. Entrées $10–$18. American. MH ¢H
Monsieur Marcel. Imagine one of a thousand small Parisian cafés or wine bars with sidewalk seating and classic plats du jour, then plunk it down in the southeast corner of the Farmers Market on Fairfax and Third, and you have an excellent idea of Monsieur Marcel. Grab a stool in the bar area, or stake out the one communal table; or, for a more self-contained dining experience, plant yourself on one of the market’s typical folding chairs at a wobbly table. 6333 W. Third St., Los Angeles, (323) 939-7792. Mon.–Thurs. 9 a.m.–9 p.m., Fri.–Sat. 9 a.m.–9:30 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.–7 p.m. AE, MC, V. French. MH $ ¤ Ü
Orso. The West Coast branch of New York’s Orso has fully embraced Southern California’s resemblance to the Italian countryside; the high-walled garden bursts with Mediterranean plants and grasses. The wood-paneled interior has its own rustic, candlelit romantic allure — and a cozy bar. 8706 W. Third St., Los Angeles, (310) 274-7144. Lunch and dinner daily 11:45 a.m.–11 p.m. Full bar. Valet parking. AE, MC, V. Entrées $18–$27. Italian. MH $$
Pacé. It’s pronounced “pah-chay” and means peace; certainly this quiet Laurel Canyon nestler is peaceful and cozy. Both the small, leafy patio and cavelike dining room are ideal for an intimate dinner with friends. 2100 Laurel Canyon Blvd., Los Angeles, (323) 654-8583. Dinner 6–11 p.m. seven nights. Beer and wine. Valet parking. AE, CB, DC, MC, V. Entrées $12–$28. California Italian. MH $ ¤
Le Pain Quotidien. Coffee is served in cunning footed bowls and the bakery features huge disks of artisanal breads, crusty baguettes and straightforward pastries. Antique pine shelving holds Le Pain Quotidien products — olive oil, olive paste, sun-dried tomatoes, sea salt, capers and so on, an almost complete Mediterranean palette. 9630 S. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, (310) 859-1100. Lunch and dinner Mon.– Sat. 7:30 a.m.–7 p.m, Sun. 8 a.m.–7 p.m. Beer and wine. Takeout. Street parking. AE, MC, V. Entrées $6.50–$18, pastries $3–$6. French. MH ¢ *
Pie ’N Burger. This is the best neighborhood hamburger joint in a neighborhood that includes Caltech, which means the guy next to you may be reading a physics proof over his chili size as if it were the morning paper. When the fruit is in season, don’t miss a cut of the epochal fresh-strawberry pie. 913 E. California Blvd., Pasadena, (626) 795-1123. Mon.–Fri. 6 a.m.–10 p.m., Sat. 7 a.m.–10 p.m., Sun. 7 a.m.–9 p.m. Beer and wine. Street parking. Cash only. Entrées $5–$10. American. JG ¢ *
Say Cheese. A dual storefront in Silver Lake houses this gourmet store on one side and espresso café on the other. The lunch menu features salads, sandwiches, quiche and the house specialty, tartiflette (baked diced potatoes with onion and bacon topped with melted reblochon cheese and served with a mixed green salad). 2800 Hyperion Ave., Silver Lake, (323) 665-0545, fax (323) 665-6465. Open seven days 8 a.m.–5:30 p.m (store open until 6:30). No alcohol. Lot parking. AE, MC, V. Sandwiches $8–$9.50. MH * ¤
Soda Jerks. The ice cream served at Soda Jerks, an old-fashioned soda fountain in Pasadena, is Fosselman’s — an excellent local brand that’s been made in Alhambra by the Fosselman family for the last 80 years. Soda Jerks is a kid-friendly place, with cheerful college-age attendants behind the counter. 219 S. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena, (626) 583-8031. Open weekdays 8 a.m.–9:30 p.m., weekends till 10 p.m. No alcohol. Takeout. Parking lot. $3–$7. AE, MC, V. Ice Cream. MH ¢ *
Tanino. The high, decorated ceilings, marble floors, impressive woodwork and sparkling chandeliers all conspire to form one of L.A.’s loveliest restaurants — an unlikely, urbane, sophisticated European refuge in a trafficky neck of Westwood. The service is charmingly warm and professional, and the earthy-yet-refined Italian cooking is most often excellent. 1043 Westwood Blvd., Westwood, (310) 208-0444. Lunch Mon.–Fri. 11:30 a.m.–3 p.m. Dinner Mon.–Sat. 5 p.m.–11 p.m., Sun. 4–10 p.m. Full bar. Takeout. Valet parking. AE, DC, MC, V. Entrées $12–$25. Italian. MH $$ ¤
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