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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.

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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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