Cornering the market
Hundreds of shoppers sampled olive oils and locally grown fruits while others bought fresh produce, seafood and flowers on a warm Saturday afternoon at the inaugural Gigi Farmers Market at the Americana at Brand.
Tropical island music played as patrons strolled along Caruso Avenue, where more than 30 vendors set up red and white booths in the European styled marketplace, which offered a variety of specialty merchandise and gourmet foods, such as artisan cheeses, pastries, wines, aged vinegars and dried fruits and nuts.
Resident Rosa Perez, her two children and mother in law munched on caramel popcorn as they walked through the market. She bought fruit and tacos from Frida Mexican Cuisine, which was one of several Americana restaurants that served food at the market.
very fun for the family, she said. believe that this was a good idea to bring families together. Andrea Drexelius was handpicked to participate in the market and sell her handmade bags from her company French Basketeer.
She mostly sells her handbags at farmers markets throughout Los Angeles and Orange counties, but she said the Americana was more organized and stylish than any she seen.
feel like I at Disneyland, Drexelius said.
The Parisian styled setting of the Americana market was unlike other markets,
which are usually held in parking lots, she said.
Jennifer McColm, who helps organizers find vendors for farmers markets in the Los Angeles area, selected the Americana market merchants, which she said had the greenest, highest quality products.
that is here is the best of the best, she said.
Residents Erik Yesayan and his father Edward Yesayan were impressed by the market, which they said was clean and elegant.
brings the community together, Erik Yesayan said.
They also frequent the Montrose Harvest Market, but his father said he preferred the new Americana market.
other one should learn from this one, Edward Yesayan said.
The idea of a farmers market at the Americana became a contentious issue when Developer Rick Caruso initially proposed that it be held every Sunday, when the Montrose Harvest Market on Honolulu Avenue is held.
Organizers of the Montrose Harvest Market argued that the Americana market could take customers away from its vendors, who were already struggling to make a profit due to the economic downturn.