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Guatemalteca is a sprawling space with a dining area at one end, a small market at the other and a long glass counter separated into a bakery area and a hot food area, cooks stumbling from the kitchen with steaming pots of beans, chicken in cream sauce or the tomato-laced beef stew hilacha, which seem to be served almost as soon as they are put into the steam table. The continuous loop of marimba music, innocuous enough when you first enter the restaurant, will take over your brain after a quarter hour or so, bouncing between cortexes in a tropical game of Pong, and emerging in your thoughts for days afterward in a musical equivalent of post-traumatic stress disorder.
View more photos of Guatemalteca pastries in the "Pastry Gazing at Guatemalteca" slideshow. If you’ve driven down Beverly Boulevard in the last 30 years, you may have noticed the line that forms outside Guatemalteca on weekends, a queue that... More »
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