"Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
_ William Morris
, 19th century craftsman, designer, writer

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Farmers Market L.A.: Foodapalooza American Style

The Original Farmers Market sits at the corner of 3rd & Fairfax in Los Angeles, next to CBS Studios and The Grove , a swanky star-studded shopping mall.

 It's a great place to take out of town guests looking for a taste (both literally and figuratively) of what it's like to live in L.A. : The city of angels and agents, surfers and celebs, and people from just about every walk of life you can imagine. The people watching alone is worth the trip.

Seventy-eight years ago, however, it was cows, not celebrities who populated the property, because 3rd and Fairfax was home to the "Gilmore Island" dairy farm.  Back then, farmers paid fifty cents each to park their trucks on the property and sell fresh produce. The idea was such a hit, permanent stalls were erected and Los Angeles' Original Farmers Market made its debut.

Today, some of those same stalls still exist. 

Blanche Magee, for instance, was among the first to realize that the farmers who gathered to sell the fruits of their labor might be hungry themselves  -she packed up a hamper full of sandwiches and started selling. Magee's Kitchen at the Farmers Market is still owned and operated by the Magee family today.  

Similarly, Du-Par's has been serving up family friendly fare and pie at the Market since 1938. The restaurant remains open its flagship location 24-hours a day. Du-Par's is legendary for selling the finest pot pies on earth, and at Thanksgiving makes thousands of pot pies to go.

Actor, James Dean is believed to have eaten breakfast at Farmers Market on September, 30, 1955 the day he drove north and died in the fateful crash.

 Farmers Market has been described by the Los Angeles Times as the, "Number one place in L.A. to spot stars."

Although the market hosts its share Hollywood A-B-and-C listers, the location is a celebrity in its own right as well -it has set the scene for Diagnosis Murder, Stigmata, T-Men and more.

 Farmers Market serves more than 3 million people in a year. That's a lot of doughnuts...

On an average day, employees throughout the market may use at least 20 different languages to serve their customers.

Isn't it funny how food can transcend so much. Turns out, we all like ice cream. One small scoop towards world peace.

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