Los Angeles is a mixture of cultures, and one of the best places to highlight this fact is Grand Central Market. At Grand Central Market, visitors can enjoy all sorts of different cuisines in one location. There’s something for everyone in this busy marketplace.
For almost a century, Grand Central Market has provided for Los Angeles. The market opened in 1917, supported by the popularity of Broadway and the residents of Bunker Hill. The market has evolved with the times and has always featured a wide variety of vendors. Developer Ira Yellin bought the market in 1984, and today his wife, Adele Yellin, continues his dream of a bustling, attractive downtown.
What You Will See
The Market has lots of various vendors selling wares, mostly foods. We saw an ATM near the entrance, though all the vendors do take credit card. We also saw plenty of places to sit along the way.
The Market has lots of places to get a bite to each. One of our favorite places is Eggslut, where diners can get breakfast or lunch of egg on a brioche. There’s plenty of places to get a slice of pizza, and one of the best is Pizzaria, where they make the food fresh in front of guests and even offer fried bananas. Of course, there are plenty of places to get a good burger, like Bel Campo Burgers, a famous restaurant in LA.
While there are lots of restaurants, most people will recognize in the Market, the real draw of this location is the vendors featuring fantastic foods one can’t easily find elsewhere. There are lots of places featuring Mexican, Salvadorian, Jewish, Thai, and Japanese cuisines. Tacos Tomas, for example, was the most favorite restaurant at this location, and the only one with a sign for corralling the line. Ramen Hood featured vegan ramen and pho. At Sticky Rice, one could get pineapple fried rice and other Thai foods. Bento Ya served Japanese bento boxes for their diners. Roast to Go served Mexican-based roasts. One vendor was just called German Sausages and served what was expected.
Another draw of the Market is the fact that one can buy groceries here as well as to go meals. Chiles Secos and Valeria’s both sell specialty spices and chilis for Mexican and Salvadorian dishes. Most people probably don’t know how many types of chilis there are, and there are so many different kinds sold at these two vendors. Many of the vendors also sell veggies, fruits, meats, fish, and cheeses. For example, Bombo, which sells fish dishes and refreshing flavored lemonade, sells many different types of fresh fish to take home and cook. Wexler’s Deli offers all sorts of various meats.
For sweeter foods, snacks, and drinks, this Market delivers. We passed by the PressBrother’s Juicery, which sells organic pressed fruits and vegetables. Valerie Confections sells different baked delicious baked goods and puddings right on the counter. Valeria’s offers Mexican candies and candied fruits along with their other Latin products. We also passed by a row of fridges with different cold drinks. Finally, we saw Courage and Craft, a vendor for spirits and alcoholic beverages selling some drinks by companies not available in most other places.
When we went, we talked to some of the people working at Knead & Co. pasta bar. At Knead & Co., guests could buy unusually shaped pasta and fresh sauces. When we went, we got to watch them making the fresh pasta as they do every day.
Location, Hours, and Admission
The Grand Central Market is open from eight AM to ten PM for all seven days of the week. It is located in downtown LA near Port Street, on 317 Broadway. The nearest parking garage entrance is on 308 S Hill Street.
Access to the market itself is free, but of course enjoying anything the vendors have to offer costs a variable amount of money.
Autism Travel Tips:
- The market does play music which can be loud in parts. Also, areas of the market can also get noisy with people talking and vendors calling out orders. Parents of noise sensitive kids should be aware of this fact. This is an open space venue so smells from different cooking areas mix.Parents to smell sensitive kids should be aware of this.
- It wasn’t incredibly crowded when we went. However, the market can become crowded and claustrophobic in the tighter halls.
- Most of the vendors are indoors, and there are plenty of places to sit.
- There are some small stairs to climb to get to some areas.
- The Market does have their bathroom downstairs.