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Everyone's Favorite Time of Day: Recess Brings Fun and Food to Upper Brand Avenue

When told his new café, Recess, is like Glendale's answer to Joan's on Third, chef and proprietor Sevan Azarian-Abdessian takes no offense. Rather, he's thrilled by the soon-to-be cliché comparison.

Recess' doors on upper Brand Blvd. have only been open since last Friday, but it's already doing a brisk eat-in and take-out business. Interior vintage-y details such as contrasting exposed wood and white hard lid ceilings, mable counters, white subway tile walls, polished dark concrete floors, and pastel color accents in the ordering/counter area and the adjoining dining room is a win-win aesthetic. Marketplace items (pasta, legumes, fancy sodas, etc.) evoke obvious associations with the West Third Street establishment, too.

Everyone looks forward to Recess.
Everyone looks forward to Recess.
Photo credit: Jessica Ritz

Azarian-Abdessian, an alumnus of the Joaquim Splichal/Patina school, says he wants Recess to be a reminder that a restaurant need not "be stuffy to be nice." He aims overall for "something fun" with whimsically named menu items ("Pig Headed" and "Bully" sandwiches, "Detention" and "Kaleidoscope" pizzas) and a deli case that's classy and fitting for the 1931 building, which had been previously occupied by a copy shop for many years. Stare at the desserts on display while you eat, and then end the meal with red velvet cake, brownies, pecan bars, and chocolate-dipped macaroons that have the right mix of crispy and soft textures.

Fully loaded and ready to play: Recess' deli case.
Fully loaded and ready to play: Recess' deli case.
Photo credit: Jessica Ritz

Hours are 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the moment, but Azarian-Abdessian plans to add blackboard dinner specials any day now, and then he'll let the recreational eating needs of his clientele direct Recess' future.

Recess: 1102 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale; (818) 507-0592.