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Oct 8, 2001 04:41 PM

l.a. area farmers markets

  • n

do any of you shop at the farmer's markets in the la area? if so, what are they like? there's talk of me relocating to los angeles but i live in seattle and love places like the pike place market and don't want to give that up. are the people who work the stalls the farmers? i chanced upon the market report on kcrw and she (laura avery) made it seem like there was a tight community at these markets.

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  1. I think the best outdoor Farmers Markets in LA are the wens. Santa Monica market, 2nd and arizona st. and the sunday Hollywood market, vine st. and hollywood blvd.
    the Santa Monica market is huge, lots of variety, basic and exotics, best in the summer but good all year round. Everyweek there is a booth in the center serving a hot food item, Border Grill has done an awesome tostada .
    If you go early in the day you will see local chefs loading up on goodies.
    The Hollywood market is good too,and has more food stalls and trinkety things
    There are lots of smaller local Farmers markets, Pacific Palisades, Villa park in Pasadena. Etc
    There is also a Central Market downtown, an indoor market with produce and stalls, lots of Mexican fruits and spices, fresh tortillas, fish and meats, but not as high quality as at Pikes.
    You could go to the Santa Monica Market and then swing by the Santa Monica Seafood on Colorado,

    1. At the Santa Monica Market all the stands are supposed sell only produce from their Farm, and there are both large and small growers, so some have more hired sales help. Or it could be a single person selling their Avocados, guavas, whatever.

      1. Freshly cut flowers, orchids, dates, marvelous tomatoes, apples, quinces, melons of many varieties, a half dozen different kinds of eggplant, chard, collards, dandelion greens, watercress, a rainbow of potatoes, plums, green beans, haricots verts, lovely small carrots, avocadoes, breads, pastries, lettuces, lemons, limes, Asian pears, chamomile, serrano chiles, jalapeno chiles, habaneor chiles, Anaheim chiles, cherry tomatoes, fresh fish, yams, sweet potatoes, artisanal cheeses, fresh fruit juices, kaffir lime leaves, curry leaves, sapote, passion fruit, tiny bananas, cavalo nero, remarkable variety of sprouts, macadamia nuts, orange and ruby beets, grapes, wild mushrooms, California truffles, agretti, basils, thymes, mints, banana flowers, dill, spinach. That's this week.

        1. I just moved here from the Boston area and was used to going downtown to Haymarket which was a good market. I love the farmer's markets here, good prices, good fresh produce. This week I bought white peaches, yellow peaches, white nectarines, fuji apples, spinach, avocado, cut flowers, cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes (3 varieties) eggplant, basil, lettuce and juice oranges. The one I go to also has baked goods, homeade tamales and a kettle korn vendor. Last week I got 6 varieties of small potatoes which I roasted.

          If you go to every wednesday they update the food section. There is a link on the food page to their guide to the farmer's markets. It lists the times, locations, dates of each one, and some weeks there is a market report.


          6 Replies
          1. re: LisaN

            Thank you for the info. I followed the links to the URL below which lists every farmer's market in southern California every day of the week *except*:

            Farmer's Market on Fairfax
            6333 W 3rd St, L.A. | (310) 475-3585

            Grand Central Market
            317 S Broadway, Downtown L.A. | (213) 624-2378


            1. re: Heather

              1) the farmers market is not a farmers market. it's a tchotchke store. yes, a tchotchke store with the best donuts in the whole world (bob's), but a tchotchke store nonetheless.

              2) anyone who buys produce at the grand central market deserves what they get. chiles? yes. tortas, tacos and gorditas? by all means. but the produce is absolutely horrible.

              1. re: FED

                I had purchased good mangos , mexican papayas, and limes at Grand Central, and they are about 1/2 the price as elsewhere . As well as a variety of fresh chiles,nopal , tomatillos etc. You can also get most these items at any large grocery on the eastside, but not in santa monica, where I live.(It's all produce that has been commercially shipped, stored, etc, NOT Farmers Market quality.)

                1. re: tanyal

                  Mole paste,Poblanos,Copal Incense,non heirloom cilantro and always a joy to wander through not be run over by the groovey people.Amen tanyal

                2. re: FED

                  Come on, don't be shy FED. Tell us what you really think.
                  I have never been to that Farmer's Market so I deserve a rap on the hand for passing along bad info.
                  Grand Central Market carnitas tacos, mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

                  1. re: Heather

                    The old Farmer's Market at 3rd & Fairfax isn't all *that* bad. Admittedly, it's more schlocky now than ever before, but there are still some goodies there: Magees' fresh nut butters, horseradish, and salads; decent New Orleans style food at the Gumbo Pot; crepes; Bob's donuts; a cheese shop; not to mention produce, and yes, the ubiquitous tchotchkes.

            2. move here. pike's place is a tourist trap compared to the LA markets. the produce is the best i've had around the world. you won't be disappointed.