Whether you’re looking to expand your mini foodie’s palate or just want everyone to chow down on delicious grub, there’s no better place to do it than the newly opened Smorgasburg LA, a downtown weekly Sunday market filled with food and shopping. We’ve got the scoop on everything you need to know about bringing the family for a gastronomic adventure of epic portions, er, proportions!
Pack Your Appetite
What began as a spin-off of a flea market in Brooklyn quickly grew into a massive weekend market with over 100 vendors in NYC. The Williamsburg sensation has now made its way westward where it’s a natural fit in Downtown LA, the current foodie capital. The market, which features dozens of LA’s most Instagrammed menus, as well as vendors selling everything from clothes and antiques to dog bow ties, has taken up residence in the Alameda Produce Market. The five-acre, open-air courtyard is home to produce vendors during the week, but on Sundays it now transforms into a food lover’s paradise. Booths with all kinds of delicious eats and funky wares fill the space, along with plenty of tables and chairs.
If it’s a hot day, let your little eaters cool down in the mist tent, while you wait in the inevitable line at your favorite booth. With your bellies full, don’t miss a fun family photo-op at the official Smorgasburg LA photo booth.
The Best of the Best
With such a wide variety of offerings it’s easy to find something to please even the pickiest of eaters, as well as your more adventurous tots (and grown-ups). Of course there are a few vendors that are more kid-appealing than others. A few of the best include artisanal donut favorite Donut Friend, which offers mini versions of their most awesome flavors so you can get a sampling of several for the whole crew. And you can check out the newest icy treat sensation, frozen pudding, at the Little Spoon booth.
Paloma’s Paletas is another tasty find, offering a rainbow of popsicles in flavors like pink lemonade and watermelon. And Amazebowls will indeed amaze: it’s a smoothie, it’s a bowl, it’s both! These brightly colored acai filled coconut shell bowls may actually have your kids clamoring to eat something packed with superfoods, just be sure to hit the booth early as the line grows fast. PopdUp pours ice-cold juice beverages served in a take-home mason jar you can re-purpose for one those Pinterest projects you’ve been meaning to tackle. If you have really adventurous eaters and don’t mind a long line, discover what all the fuss is about at the uber-popular Raindrop Cake, a clear jello-like sphere with your choice of toppings, like a syrupy sugar sauce.
More To Come
The market will be hosting themed days, like celebrating National Ice Cream Day and hosting a Record Fair. Pop-ups and special events will be included in the mix and a kid-centric zone is also in the works. Check their Facebook page for what’s happening this weekend.
Smorgasburg LA is open every Sunday from 10 a.m.- 6 p.m. There is plenty of free 2-hour parking in the new structure right next door. Strollers are welcome and definitely recommended as it can get crowded and easy to lose sight of your tiniest eaters. There are several umbrella-shaded tables available around the market, but make sure you pack your sunscreen if it’s a hot day as the rest of the place is pretty sun-soaked. Bathrooms are port-a-potties. As with most things, the earlier you arrive to beat the crowds and the heat, the better. No dogs allowed, so leave your fur-babies at home.
Our verdict? We can’t imagine that the NY original is any better, and this fabulous array of foods is perfect for both finding something for everyone in the family and simultaneously getting even picky eaters to try something new. This welcome addition to the LA food scene makes for a perfect destination or drop by on a Sunday.
746 Market Ct.
Have you explored the new Smorgasburg LA yet? What was your family’s favorite booth?
—written and pictures by Shahrzad Warkentin