An Urban Food Court   2 comments


Angelinos have shopped at Grand Central Market in downtown Los Angeles since 1917. Today, they’re also enjoying cuisine prepared by various vendors sharing space with the grocers. My mom recalls going there as a child with her mother and aunts to do much of their weekly shopping for everything from produce to dried beans, from meat to cheese.

There’s still a butcher, but a more upscale one and the same is true of the cheese purveyor. Many of the transactions for produce are spoken in Spanish. Much of the food is traditional ethnic street fare; some is on the trendier side. It’s a food court with character and characters.


Before a recent visit we created a list of the places we wanted to sample: Tacos Tumbras a Tomas, Sarita’s Pupuseria, Texas barbecue from Horse Thief, Sticky Rice and Bel Campo. We made it to the first two and were too stuffed to eat anything else. Well, except for ice cream from McConnell’s.

The tacos were massive: mounds of carnitas doused in a blend of spicy red and green salsas. Although the tacos were huge in size and flavor, the best part may have been waiting in line (line is used loosely here). I didn’t have enough confidence in my Spanish to order but I understood what those beside me were having and what the men behind the counter were asking.


Sarita’s Pupuseeria was also a popular spot and the line (this one appropriately named) moved slowly. While you wait it’s fascinating watching the women make the thick pancake-like shapes. We tried some filled with refried beans, cheese and pork with cheese. The latter was the tastiest thanks to gooey cheese and shredded pork, but it was also the greasiest.

We’re looking forward to another visit so we can cross the other places off our list.


Grand Central Market
Four Plates (and lots of napkins)
317 S. Broadway
Los Angeles


2 responses to “An Urban Food Court

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  1. I love this kind of market. Reminds me of the market where we shopped in Florence.

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