At this vibrant, fast-paced, and inexpensive New York-style lunch spot, you wait in line with other hungry diners in a cluster behind you, in a dash from work, breathing down your neck, jonesing for their Cobb salad. Friendly ladies behind the register swiftly guide you through the menu-that is, if you don't already know what you want, and you probably do-then they give you a number, you pick your table and, in less than five minutes, you've got a plate piled high with astonishingly fresh stuff. But here is when it all slows down a bit. A portobello mushroom burger with lightly melted mozzarella on a delicate foccacia is accompanied by some delightfully thin fries. The spring rolls have cold vermicelli noodles lovingly wrapped next to curly sliced carrots and cucumbers, all artfully arranged around a complex dipping sauce. And the habit-forming Cobb salad is topped with nearly every possible ingredient, impossibly fresh. Your lunch may come quickly, but you'll want to take all the time in the world to savor it.
930 Baca St., 955-1105. Breakfast and lunch Monday-Saturday. $.
Portobello mushroom burger.