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by Inlander Staff

Go Go Burrito -- Go Go Burrito's interior is modern, functional and stylish, with an understated psychedelic design motif featuring love beads, day-glo signage and a pink go-go boot lamp. The hefty fish burrito ($5.50) included marinated cod fish (not the deep-fried stuff you sometimes get), rice, pinto beans, cabbage, salsa, guacamole, chipotle sauce and a squirt of fresh lime, all neatly wrapped up in a wheat tortilla. It was excellent -- easily on par with the best burritos in town. The build-your-own veggie burrito ($4.50) -- stuffed with black beans, rice, cheese, salsa, sour cream, onions, lettuce, and chipotle sauce -- was spicy (but not overwhelmingly so), generous and tasty, with the fresh vegetables adding a nice crunch. The staff is upbeat and helpful. 1902 W. Francis Ave. Call 326-5758. (Reviewed 12/2/04, MC)

Twigs Bistro -- Twigs offers food and atmosphere that manages to transcend commonly held food court dining conceptions. The lunch menu of the day offers an array of intriguing and competitively priced choices, including sandwiches and wraps ($5-$6), soups, salads, topped baked potatoes, combos and a section called "hot off the grill" where you choose among seven options (battered fish, cheeseburger deluxe, crispy chicken sandwich, ham and Swiss melt, etc.) and get fries and a 16 oz. soda in the deal for $5.95. The Chicken Caesar Wrap with chips ($5.50) was a winning mixture of tender chicken, romaine lettuce, diced tomatoes and artichoke hearts with tangy Caesar dressing in a basil flour tortilla. Delicious and surprisingly filling -- and worth the 20-minute wait we experienced. 808 W. Main Ave. in Riverpark Square. Call 232-3376. (MC)

The MAC Caf & eacute; -- This quiet lunch spot is bright and sparkling with great views and lots of natural light. Menu items include soups like the house tomato basil bisque and a rotating chef's special ($2.50 a cup), salads like the Caesar ($5, $7 with the addition of smoked salmon or grilled chicken), and specialty sandwiches along with a daily selection of assorted house-baked scones, muffins, breads, pastries and other sweet and savory bits ($1.50-$2). There's a kid's menu, too. The generous and tender smoked pork tenderloin sandwich on grilled bread with cabbage slaw, sweet onion, bacon bits, honey Dijon and apple cider dressing ($7.50) lived up to its description. Details are well attended to. Northwest Museum of Arts & amp; Culture main building at 2316 W. First Ave. Call 363-5358. (MC)

Herbal Essence -- The restaurant's interior walls are a deep cabernet and are highlighted by colorful artwork. Sparkly candles add romance. The clever, surprising menu here mixes and matches a variety of ingredients and flavors. Seafood stuffed 12-oz. ribeye ($24) was enormous and beautifully presented, with mashed potatoes forming a peak with a sprig of fresh rosemary on top. Sauteed squash added color and crunch, and the stuffing was deliciously rich in crab, shrimp and cheese. The coconut-crusted gulf prawns ($17.35) in a Key West sweet-and-sour sauce consisted of six jumbo prawns coated in coconut batter and pan-fried to a golden brown. The sauce was more sweet than sour and went well with the prawns. Our server was very attentive. 115 N. Washington. Call 838-4600. (LM)

Publication date: 12/09/04

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