Over a decade ago, as I backpacked through Europe, I remember with singular clarity the tastes of freshly baked, attentively prepared French pastries. Before then, I had experienced only the over-sweetened "French" pastries in America; I had no idea of what the real thing should taste like. Since then, I had given up finding the same experience here, until I came across Bechamel in Torrance. Judy, who is always smiling, can help you choose from the selections of tarts, croissants, and other items prepared by her husband, Vu, who received his training in the finest traditions in France. I recommend everything, but the tarts are what I would single out as exceptional. They open at 7 AM and close by 3 PM on weekdays and Saturdays. Take a sip of their coffee and sit in their shop. Bechamel lets you enjoy fine food in a comfortable, family setting.
Pros: Tarts, French bread, Croissants
Cons: Not open Sundays