The sign, “Meet Me at Third and Fairfax” marks the corner of this year-round, seven-days-a-week Farmers Market which has stood on this site since 1934! It has since become a historic Los Angeles landmark!
Its story begins in 1880 when Arthur Fremont Gilmore bought two dairy farms. When he and his partner eventually parted ways, Arthur took over the 256-acre ranch (with its dairy herd and farmers) which is the current site of the Farmers Market and the next door The Grove Mall. A dozen nearby farmers started to bring their produce and sold them in their parked trucks on a field. People started coming to buy the fresh and the rest is history for this now famous Farmers Market.
In 1905, during a search for water wells to sustain the farmland, oil was discovered under its land. In 1953, the Gilmore Oil Company took over the dairy farm.
Earl Bell (EB) Gilmore, the son of the original owner, A.F. Gilmore, took over the family business and established a midget car racing and professional football. In 1952, CBS Television City opened just north of this location which made it a convenient food stop for the network’s workers, visitors, and stars! Elvis Presley, Mickey Rooney, Regis Philbin, Mae West, Johnny Carson were among the celebrities who came to eat and their fans followed suit.
Today, over a hundred stalls offer produce, cooked food, groceries, books, souvenir shops. There is seating for those who want to eat at the market. There is a broad selection of cuisines represented… American, Asian, Latin American, Middle Eastern, French, and other ethnic foods, savory and sweets.
Los Angeles Souvenirs, even an Oscar Award:
We enjoyed our al fresco lunch at Monsieur Marcel Pain Vin et Fromage:
We got a mixed Cheese and Meat plate with Brie de Meaux, Gruyere de Beaufort, and Manchego with Iberico Ham, and Smoked Duck with a Walnut Chutney
And Roasted Artichoke with Remoulade Sauce:
Just next door is the delightful Monsieur Marcel Gourmet Market with so many souvenir/ gift options:
In retrospect, because there is just so much to try, next time we will make this among our first stops so we can enjoy the range of fresh produce and food for the duration of our stay. This is a Must Visit.