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For La Brea Bakery, It's a Small World After All

Cafe will be part of California Adventure, a complex scheduled to open next to Disneyland in 2001.


La Brea Goes to Mouseland: When Disney's new theme park, California Adventure, opens next to Disneyland, La Brea Bakery will be there. The California Adventure complex (scheduled to open in early 2001) will include Downtown Disney, a collection of shops, cafes and entertainment venues not vastly unlike Universal's CityWalk. And at one end of this happy street will sit La Brea Bakery Cafe, "an expanded version of our retail store," says Manfred Krankl, the bakery's general manager. It will look like a Craftsman-style building with an undulating roof. Inside there'll be a counter for sipping specialty coffees, wines, micro-brews and juices. Next to that is a grab-and-go section of packaged salads, sandwiches, breads and pastries. If you want full table service (most seating is outside), you can order grilled sandwiches, soups and other "bread-based" meals from the breakfast, lunch or dinner menu. And yes, you can dash outside the park to eat here (there's no admission fee for Downtown Disney) and then run back inside for another ride on Big Thunder Mountain Railroad.

Peaceful Axe: The first Axe (pronounced "ah-shay"--it means "go in peace" in the Yoruba language of West Africa) was a neighborhood Mediterranean restaurant Joanna Moore opened in Santa Monica back in 1990. After it closed in 1995, Moore traveled, worked as a chef and landed a job with the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy for a couple of years. "It helped me find that this [running a restaurant] is what I really do," Moore says. The time away from Axe led her to realize how much she admired purity, simplicity and clean flavors. At breakfast she serves porridge, nine-grain pancakes, eggs and grilled tofu. For lunch there are mixed green, Nicoise and bean thread noodle salads, sandwiches on homemade bread and soba noodles in miso broth. Dinner will be served as soon as Moore finds the right chef. The decor is open and minimalistic with strong horizontal lines. Says Moore: "The idea is to come into a peaceful place."

* Axe, 1009 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice; (310) 664-9787.

If Performance Art Makes You Hungry, Read On: A Silver Lake alternative theater named Glaxa Studios has never had any food service but a coffee bar--until now. The coffee bar has become Cafe Glaxa, and the chef is none other than Magenta, who about five years ago graced the kitchen of the Silver Lake fixture Millie's. Magenta brings her signature dishes to the high-ceilinged 1920s building. That means breakfasts and light dinners that go easy on meat. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. there are omelets, devil's mess (spicy eggs with vegetables), potato latkes and French toast. The place reopens at 5:30 p.m. for dinner: soups, salads, sandwiches and vegetarian dishes such as a brown rice burrito or curried potatoes and vegetables.

* Cafe Glaxa, 3707 Sunset Blvd., L.A.; (323) 663-5295.

More Breakfast News: La Serenata Gourmet--the casual, less expensive branch of La Serenata di Garibaldi--is now serving breakfast on weekends from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (10924 W. Pico Blvd., West Los Angeles). If you're nostalgic for the Mexican breakfast served at the original East L.A. location, you're in luck. You can also get Belgian waffles, crepes and oatmeal. No reservations are needed, but the phone is (310) 441-9667.

Sure, Mom, I Remembered: If you haven't made plans for Mother's Day yet (and you'd better--it's Sunday), here are a couple more restaurants to consider:

Rix Restaurant (1413 5th St., Santa Monica) will have a jazz band playing after 6 p.m. and three-course dinner deal for $45, exclusive of tax, tip or beverage. Served from 5-9:30 p.m., the dinner includes choices like chilled tomato soup with shrimp and fresh mozzarella purse; John Dory with spring peas, pea shoots, tomatoes and onion; and fresh baked peach in brioche with blueberry ice cream. Call (310) 656-9688 for reservations.

Xiomara (69 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena) offers a Nueva Latina (that's Cuban, Spanish and South American) brunch on Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. All moms will receive a complimentary Xiomara's Mambo, a drink of rum, lime juice and freshly squeezed sugar cane juice. There's also a three-course meal for $35 with, among other things, gingered codfish pot-stickers as an appetizer, cured beef hash with a fried egg over sweet potato stew for an entree and a Napoleon (layers of cream cheese flan, guava puree and fresh strawberries) for dessert. Call (626) 796-2520 for reservations.

Pagani (8800 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood) also will open for Sunday dinner in Mom's honor. Chef Claude Segal will be whipping up menu specials in addition to the regular dinner menu, served from 5-10 p.m. Roses will be handed out to all the ladies (and to any men who want them, for that matter). Call (310) 858-5801 for reservations.

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