I am talking about the Los Angeles Farmer’s Market. This place claims to be the “original farmer’s market”. They may be right. The market started to operate in 1934 with farmers selling their goods from their trucks to the community. With time great eateries and restaurants were established in the area and it became a popular place to have lunch or dinner (especially for Hollywood stars).
Today, the market is a historic Los Angeles landmark and a popular tourist attraction. You can see tourist buses dropping people from all around the world in the area. It gets pretty crowded on weekends (they even run out of parking space). In fact, it gets so crowded that you can’t even walk properly down the aisles. The key is to visit during the week or early on the weekends.
For what I saw, this place deviates a little from the whole “market” concept. In a farmer’s market you expect to see a lot of people selling fruits, vegetables, flowers or plants. There are also fresh meat and fish vendors. There are others selling their homemade or artisanal goods.Some sell their country of origin, hard to find specialties. The focus is on local people selling their goods to the community. These places usually have space for some stalls serving ready to eat food to hungry shoppers but this is not the focus of the whole event.
I felt like the tables were turned in the Los Angeles Farmer’s Market. It fills more like a giant food court. The majority of the stalls are dedicated to restaurants instead of locals selling their raw, unprocessed or homemade goods. I am not saying the Market is not good because of this reason. I am just saying that for me, the place does not necessarily fit the “farmer’s market” proper description. I expected to see a wide variety of produce, meats and fruits from all the greater Los Angeles and surrounding areas (since we are so close to the food growing areas). Instead, I just found restaurants and prepared food stalls. That is the difference between what is here in Los Angeles and what I saw in Vancouver’s Granville Island. In Granville, there are people doing different and unique things with food. Here is Los Angeles, well, there is variety but not necessarily uniqueness.
Like I said, don’t get me wrong. The Farmer’s Market deserves a visit. The place claims more than 100 restaurants, shops and stores. Here is a list of the food you can try:
- Middle Eastern
- Ice Cream
- More bakeries that you can imagine
With all this selection, you will need to go like five times to try a lot of these restaurants. I have tried the Middle Eastern and Singaporean food. The food was really good.
Next to the Market, you can find The Grove which is a big retails and entertainment complex. After you get stuff with food from the Market, take a stroll thru this shopping area. There are a lot of stores to see (some are affordable). The scene is great and there are entertainment possibilities for all the members of the family. There is even a trolley that makes a fun ride for all the family.
The Farmer’s Market is located at 3rd and Fairfax and it is really close to Wilshire Boulevard (where a lot of museums are located). If you are around the area, consider stopping by to get some delicious food.
Tip: bring enough money because the food prices are quite high (expect to pay 10 dollars per person for a plate of food).
Pay a visit to this special place in Los Angeles. You may get a surprise. When we went earlier this year, there was a spring celebration. There were performers from different parts of the world. I absolutely loved the performance from these Japanese drummers (see the video below).
And remember you can have anything you like for breakfast, lunch or dinner.