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The Abbey Café
127 University Avenue, Hillcrest
www.theabbeycafe.com
619-692-0311

Every night at dusk, in the patio below the big wooden cross, some poor sucker gets the job of lighting the wall of candles, 250 of them. But for customers, it's magic. Just as atmospheric is the 1910 house's sitting room, with old furniture, a pew, metal chalices, black iron sconces, stone cherubim, and candles above a big fireplace. This is a sister restaurant to the famed Abbey in Hollywood. But somehow, this feels more real. The breakfast menu (served all day) includes "Heavenly" French toast (Hawaiian bread dipped in vanilla and cinnamon and topped with strawberries), buttermilk hotcakes with chocolate chips, and grilled chicken breast with eggs. Good lunch and dinner deals include the "Chef William" chicken sandwich, turkey burgers, or penne with turkey sausage.

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