South Pasadena’s newfound hipness is epitomized by this tented bistro, which is bright by day and romantic by night. Owners/chefs/spouses Monique King and Paul Rosenbluh turn out an always-interesting and usually wonderful menu of multiethnic offerings, from five-spice pork egg rolls to warm spinach salad, braised lamb shank with creamy polenta to grilled rare ahi with vegetable chilequiles. The lunchtime salads are excellent, the desserts comforting, and the wine list creative and affordable.
1009 El Centro St., South Pasadena, 626.441.2443, eatatfirefly.com, Modern American. L Tues.-Fri., D nightly; brunch Sun.; closed Mon. Beer & wine. AE, MC, V. $$-$$$