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A Farmers Market with a View (and Dinner & Crafts, Too)

You’ve had a busy week balancing schedules, cooking, cleaning, and chauffeuring your entourage.  After all of that, you are just about out of steam by mid-week.  What’s a domestic damsel in distress to do?  Breathe. Relax. Ditch the apron and head for the Thursday night Yamashiro Farmers Market.  It’s the perfect way to welcome summer nights a little early, taste delicious and organic food without the “eating-out” guilt, and keep kids entertained with cool activities.  You even go home with a head start on tomorrow’s food, with bags of fruit and other tasty treats.  Did we also mention you get to sip and enjoy your glass of wine with gorgeous views of the city?

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Shopping
The best part about visiting a farmer’s market mid-week is you get to shop for tomorrow’s dinner.  What a way to start your weekend one step ahead of the game.  You can grab fresh strawberries, carrots, tomatoes, and other greens from Hillside Organic Farms, Lores Family Farms Fresh Veggies, and Gama Farms.  Don’t forget healthy snacks from Alex Dried Fruits & Nuts, breakfast from Homeboy Bakery and Long Shot Coffee & Espresso, and you can take it easy and throw together a fabulous anti-pasto type smorgasbord for dinner tomorrow night with goodies from Brothers Hummus, Gourmet on Wheels Cheeses and Gunnar & Jake’s Gourmet Pickles and Peppers.

Feasting
Heirloom LA
If you want the latest delicious “it” food, it doesn’t get an better than Heirloom LA.  The menu here changes weekly but two things are for sure: the Garden Salad from their very own garden-grown veggies and the kid-friendly lasagna cupcakes.  Kids go bonkers for Lasagna Cupcakes: cheese, pasta and the word “cupcake” always win them over… To put the icing on the (cup)cake, they offer scrumptious vegan options too.

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Cool Haus
To satisfy your sweet tooth, the Cool Haus truck offers up to-die-for (or to-draw-for?  they’re inspired by architects) ice cream sandwiches.  The flavors rotate but with flavors like Dirty Mint Chip, Brown Butter Candied Bacon, Fried Chicken & Waffles, Salted Caramel, Coffee Oreo ice cream to sandwich between a variety of cookies, everyone finds something to adore. Blue Bottle iced coffee hits the scene for tired parents, and be sure to remind kids that they can even nosh on the edible wrappers.

Tip: Stand in line as soon as you can because the line can get long! Also, kids can sample as many flavors as they want.

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Flatiron Truck
Order the yummy Bacon Mac & Cheese for the kiddos (and if they don’t care too much for bacon, you have the option to order it bacon-free) with a side of fried broccoli.  The crunchy green is a surprising kid favorite and it might just help your picky eaters to like the infamous green veggie.

Tip: Get there early before the crowds and get yourself an adult beverage to sip as you sample.

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Playing
Art Rebel
The kiddos will love the different types of art activities available (starting at $5 and up) that range from Spin Art, painting your own canvas, sand art jewelry,face painting, glitter tattoos, pasta painting to various green art crafts. Art Rebel uses only non-toxic water based materials and products so you can put your mind at ease. Winner of Red Tricycle Coolest Camp, finalist for best art class, and voted favorite birthday spot, it’s the perfect chance to try them out!

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What to Bring
Seating is available for snacking and resting, so no need (or room) for blankets. The grounds are spacious so walking around with a stroller is feasible, if you want that option.  Be sure to bring tons of cash since many of the vendors won’t accept credit cards.  Bring a camera with a flash to snap memorable photos of the kiddos because Yamashiro has some of the best views of the city and it’s especially fantastic at night!

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Potty Presence
The restrooms are located inside the restaurant, within close proximity to the market. You might want to make an early potty stop before dinner so that you aren’t standing in line for food when the need arises- you don’t want to lose your spot in line due to an unexpected potty emergency.

Parking
For families with small children, valet parking at Yamashiro is available for $8. Otherwise, free valet with a shuttle running every 15 minutes from 5:00pm to 9:15pm is available at the Mosaic Church located at 7107 Hollywood Blvd. Entrance to the parking lot is off of Brea Ave.

One Final Tip: This is a perfect outing for out of town guests, who will revel in the spectacular architecture, sweeping views and fresh local foods.  But only bring friends and family you wouldn’t mind having as neighbors as this will convince them that we have our own slice of heaven right here in LA.

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Yamashiro Farmer’s Market
1999 North Sycamore Avenue
Los Angeles, Ca
Phone: 323-466-5125
Online: Yamashiro Facebook
Hours: Starting April 4th – September, Thursdays from 5:00pm – 9:00pm

What’s your favorite stop at this farmer’s market?

–Sommy Rhee

Photos courtesy of Heirloom LA, Art Rebel, Yamashiro Hollywood, Flatiron Truck, Cool Haus

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