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Critic's Preview

May 29, 2008|S. Irene Virbila | Times Restaurant Critic

Morning Pastries at Euro Pane Bakery Going to or returning from the Pasadena City College flea market (first Sunday of every month), the required stop is Euro Pane bakery for Sumi Chang's delicious morning pastries. The Campanile alum has a dedicated following for her buttery croissants, blueberry danishes, cheese danishes, cinnamon rolls and caramel sea salt macaroons. Morning pastries, $2.35 to $4.50 950 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena; (626) 577-1828

Mojito at Xiomara on Melrose Summertime calls for a mojito. And the best in town can be found at Xiomara on Melrose where Cuban-born owner Xiomara Ardolina insists on making her version (called the Mambo) of the classic Cuban drink with freshly squeezed sugar cane juice. She serves it in a tilted glass that makes you feel tipsy before you've even taken a sip. You might want to stay for a bowl of her Cuban black bean soup, some spicy duck ropa vieja or, at lunch, a Cuban pressed sandwich. Mojitos, $9.50 including tax. 6101 Melrose Ave., Hollywood; (323) 461-0601; www .xiomararestaurant.com

Chameau When that couscous craving comes on, chef Adel Chagar at Chameau (French for "camel") in the Fairfax district is ready with half a dozen varieties, including market vegetable couscous and baby lemon chicken served with couscous and olive sauce. But first, an order of duck bestila -- the Moroccan savory pie of poultry layered with almonds and sugar -- is obligatory, and some of the subtly spiced salads too. End the feast in this charming bistro with the ineffably light bastilla au lait with wild berries and cream. Entrees, $19 to $28. 339 N. Fairfax Ave., L.A.; (323) 951-0039; www .chameaurestaurant.com

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