Readers: Paxia could be just what the neighborhood needs -- or not

Paxia - Alta Cocina Mexicana is set to open today at 40th and Tejon, and while fans of the nearby Los Carboncitos are overjoyed, at least one is also dubious:

Dear Steve and Michelle: You really thought that the Sunnyside Neighborhood needed yet ONE MORE mexican restaurant?!?!? In the six years we've lived in Sunnyside, we have watched a fair share of Mexican restaurants come and go. I'm certain this place will last less than a year.

But UncleDave8 is more optimistic:

Sounds terrific. Hope they stay authentic and don't cater to the gringos too much. Chili Verde needs some competition in this particular market niche.

The space, which once held a second outpost of Benny's, had been slated to become Botto, an Italian restaurant that Steve and Michelle Gelman, who shuttered their original Gelman's restaurant last year, planned to open.

But instead, they decided to lease it to the brothers behind Los Carboncitos, which has grown into a chain of three restaurants. "We loved that it was a real family affair, and we loved what they wanted to do here -- upscale Yucatán-style cuisine with a lot of seafood -- so we finished out the space for them, built a great patio, a full tequila-lounge area and a fireplace," Michelle Gelman says. :Their success is important to us."

And to the neighborhood.

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