Porta Via Italian Foods

Pasadena/Glenadale/San Gabriel

Pasadena has scored a new lunch staple with this bright, bustling Italian deli. Order sandwiches—we like the roasted leg of lamb with eggplant, the house-made meatball, and the Kobe-style roast beef—at the counter. A glass case shows off shaved fennel salad with oranges and pecorino, plus squares of lasagna bolognese and bowls of orecchiette with broccoletti. Browse the selection of olive oils, dried pastas, salamis, and cheeses like local Gioia burrata (the same variety Nancy Silverton uses at Mozza) while you wait. Then take it to go, or dine on the popular back patio. » 1 W. California Blvd., Ste. 312, Pasadena (626-793-9000 or portaviafoods.com). B-L daily. No alcohol. Italian Deli     $