In a youth-obsessed town, to stay relevant after 100 years is no small feat. Yet, if any institution has done it, it’s The Grand Central Market.
It’s not only a breeding ground for new concepts, like PBJLA and Ramen Hood, a vegan ramen shop that ladles one of the most impressive plant-based meals in town. It’s still home to some of the time-worn vendors that represent L.A.’s diverse population.
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The Grand Central Market is releasing a cookbook to celebrate its 100th anniversary, and it’s as much a history as a compendium of recipes from the market’s top vendors.
Divided into sections — breakfast, tacos, carbs, happy hour, meat and fish, veg and sweets — the book smartly offers key dishes from a variety of restaurants, celebrating the diversity and evolution of L.A.’s recent rise as a foodie destination.
Your correspondent rarely visits downtown without stopping by the market,even if just to watch the crowds mill around in various states of indecision at the cornucopia of offerings.
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But he’ll now look at GCM with a bit more reverence because its owner, the late Ira Yellin, had incredible foresight when he purchased the market in the ‘80s, a time when people had vacated downtown. He knew that downtown could be brought back to life, and with the help of his wife Adele, who runs the show now and co-authored the book, they managed to keep the historic charm with the progressive vision and discipline that makes GCM such a special location.
While we wish there were more historic photos of the place, the book’s images of the market, its current vendors and their mouthwatering dishes don’t disappoint.
And yes, Eggslut’s famous Slut is in there.