DTLA – Downtown Los Angeles has experienced monumental growth over the past decade, and one of the world’s leading travel magazines has taken note. Fodor’s Travel has placed the Central City on its list of 52 places to visit in 2019. Dubbed the Go List, the write-up highlights Downtown’s “fashionable hotels, trendy restaurants, Volstead-themed bars and expensive boutiques.” Fodor’s Travel has steered globetrotters toward exciting destinations for more than 80 years. The list was revealed on Nov. 14, and specifically mentions newcomers including the NoMad and Freehand hotels, and cites the beauty of the architecture in the Historic Core. The description is not all sunny, however, as Fodor’s also cites the “calamity of Skid Row that spills out beyond its boundaries.” This is not the first time that Downtown has been lauded as a place to explore. The New York Times placed Downtown on its “52 Places to Go in 2014” list, highlighting its vibrant food scene, including Grand Central Market.
Much has changed in the last decade, and much has not. The biggest news came when Grand Central Market was sold on Nov. 1, just days after celebrating its 100th birthday. Longtime proprietor Adele Yellin, widow of the influential Downtown developer Ira Yellin, chose to sell to Langdon Street Capital, a Beverly Hills real estate firm led by a young USC grad named Adam Daneshgar. Talk about stunning timing.
What hasn’t changed is the building’s interior of exposed concrete and big beams and dusty skylights. You can still find the righteous regional foods of Latin America everywhere, whether that’s Salvadoran pupusas at Sarita’s or oversized gorditas from Tacos Tumbras a Tomas. China Cafe, the market’s oldest vendor, remains as delicious as ever even after its renovation.
Newer tenants from the past five years have mostly been pleasant surprises, too, bringing some real talent. The newest, Walter and Margarita Manzke’s Sari Sari Store, translates Filipino flavors into craveable dishes like fried rice with sisig (chopped pig’s head) and the blindingly delicious buko pie. G&B is one of the best coffee shops in L.A. Wexler’s Deli makes some of the best pastrami and cured fish in the city.
The balance of old and new — and of cheap vs. bougie — feels like some sort of Goldilocks principle is in effect. You look around and see Mexicans and Koreans and Caucasians, the working class and the rich, speaking a jumble of languages that melts into waves of happy noise. And this is exactly where my suspicion comes in, because real estate firms don’t usually spend millions on a project just to leave it be.
It has begun building out a large space in the historic Bradbury Building at Third and Broadway. The location formerly housed a Sprint phone store, and the cafe will face tough competition from nearby craft coffee shops G&B (at Grand Central Market) and Groundwork (at Second and Main).
It’s still unclear when the shop could open, but you can expect a quality selection of pour-over coffees and espresso drinks, plus delicious pastries and snacks, when it does arrive.
Coming to 304 S. Broadway.
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES – Grand Central Market in DLTA has been listed as one of America’s 50 best new restaurants! Bon Appetit magazine says the culinary hub is a must-see for foodies.
It is a century-old building that used to house bulk goods and cheap food. But the newly redone Grand Central Market just made Bon Appetit lists for best new restaurants in the country, and it speaks to the evolving scene in DTLA.
From grass-fed burgers to gourmet cheese to traditional Mexican food, those in search of gastronomic delights can find all that and more among the dozens of restaurants under one roof.
Bon Appetit called it a one-stop snapshot of the L.A. food scene.
Grand Central Market, on Broadway at 3rd Street, opened in 1917 as a market, complete with a soda counter. It’s been known for ethnic food or a spot to buy ingredients in bulk.
But the new upscale eateries such as Belcampo’s grass-fed meat, named as best burger in the country, have raised the culinary bar for this L.A. landmark. Customers say they come for the variety and appreciate the mix of old and new.
With more people living in DTLA, residents say the expanding restaurant scene is helping revitalize the area and giving a boost to the urban economy.
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES – It’s back! Shop Walk DTLA returned to the Historic Core on Sunday, Aug. 3 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. It is a coordination among local businesses to offer discounts and special events in their stores.
Perks included music, libations and food. The latest businesses to announce they, too, will offer customers special deals are boutique clothing store Curio Los Angeles at 125 W. Fifth Street, lingerie shop La Tress at 111 W. Seventh Street, Beelman’s Pub at 600 S. Spring Street, Grand Central Market 317 S. Broadway and the Ace Hotel at 929 S. Broadway Street. Blair Besten, executive director of the Historic Downtown Los Angeles Business Improvement District, said thousands of people showed up to walk the streets and pop into retail stores and eateries back in February, and expected even more for the Aug. 3rd event saying “It is a really fun day to explore the Historic Core – from flavors to fun.”
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES – An outpost of McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams opened at Grand Central Market on last week. To celebrate its first week, the purveyor of icy artisanal treats offered free scoops to those who showed up between 6-9 p.m. on opening day July, 31st.
The Santa Barbara – based creamery has been operating for 70 years and specializes in handmade ice creams made with seasonal ingredients. The Grand Central Market opening is the shop’s only location in LA.
In addition to simple scoops of flavors, such as Turkish coffee and summer fruit cobbler, McConnell’s offers ice cream sandwiches with house-baked cookies, shakes, sundaes and more. Check out the Earl Grey tea float, which features a dose of bracing iced tea with a scoop of your favorite ice cream.
McConnell’s is one of many ice cream shops entering the Downtown market, including Gelateria Uli at the Spring Arcade Building, Scoops in Chinatown and New York City’s Big Gay Ice Cream, which is evening a location near Orpheum theater.
Located at Grand Central Market, 317 S. Broadway or www.mcconnells.com
Downtown Los Angeles – There must be something weird going on in the transformation of downtown Los Angeles, an area that not even Southern Californians used to want to visit.
The New York Times’ list of “52 Places to Go in 2014” has downtown L.A. at No. 5…IN THE WORLD! The article cites its museums and shopping and especially its food scene.
“Most notable is the Grand Central Market, an arcade of over 30 of the best food vendors in the city,” the Times writes. “The market has been redone in the past year, attracting popular purveyors like G&B Coffee and, soon, Belcampo Meat Co. Just down the street on Broadway is Alma, which was named the best new restaurant in the country by Bon Appetit magazine.”
No. 1 on the list of places to go, if you want to go on an adventure is Cape Town, South Africa.
No. 3 is the California North Coast. Another California destination, Tahoe, is No. 21 on the list.
Good for L.A. and good for California. Last year’s list didn’t include a single CA spot so we are making progress slowly but surely.
DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES – Grand Central Market continues its makeover this summer as new vendors debut a range of foods, including Texas BBQ and gelato.
The historical Grand Central Market opened in 1917 and the market now has 40 stalls serving up Mexican food, deli goods, ice cream and more. While some of the original stalls remain the same, a slew of new sellers have opened up in an attempt to upgrade the space.
Horse Thief, a restaurant serving “Central Texas-style BBQ,” including an array of smoked meats and other home-style dishes such as bacon and blue cheese potato salad, just opened on the market’s renovated patio across from Angels Flight.
The overhaul of the market began in April with the opening of Sticky Rice. This stand serves Thai comfort foods including curry bowls and papaya salad – “authentic dishes that Thai families and chefs make for themselves.”
Other new additions include Bulgarini Gelato, a “seasonal gelati and sorbetti” cart parked in the market and Valerie, a new coffee shop that serves old-school diner foods including a coffee crunch cake, cobb salad, chili and hot dogs. G&B Coffee is now open as well, shortly after the owners hosted a pop-up coffee bar at a Silver Lake café.
According to a press release, other upcoming openings at the Grand Central market include DTLA Cheese and The Oyster Gourmet.
The Los Angeles Times reports that the overhaul of the market is a multiyear project that will try to attract local chefs and entrepreneurs that will sell a variety of specialty goods like coffee, cheese and wine.