Tuesday, October 20, 2009

MacArthur Park Food Carts of Los Angeles - Video

A cake left out in the rain, to quote a key lyric from the song "MacArthur Park" by Jimmy Webb,  is not the only food item in L.A.'s infamous MacArthur Park. On weekends, a cornucopia of carts featuring Mexican-style cuisine line the sidewalks of this park.

Everything from hot corn on the cob slathered in butter, to grilling bacon-wrapped hot dogs, cups of fresh sliced fruit, and to quench your thirst: sweet tropical juice over fresh shaved ice. With these tasty treats in hand, sit on the expansive lawns under shade trees and watch the kids in colorful uniforms kick around a soccer ball.

Located at the intersection of Alvarado St. and Wilshire Blvd., this park has been upgraded and is now filled on weekends with families picnicking and socializing. A bustling sidewalk vendor culture thrives here. The food carts are hand-made: the signs hand-lettered, and the cart wheels are a little wobbly.

You won't see $100,000 groovy lunch trucks parked around here, that's for sure. Now we're not talking healthy food fare, but the cuisine is well prepared and tasty for an every-once-in-a-while splurge -- and the prices are right for this chintzy chef.

Before bacon became hip -- before it started turning up in everything from bacon brownies to garnishing a martini -- sizzling bacon was the smell that drew you to a Mexican sidewalk vendor browning bacon-wrapped hot dogs, on the way to your parking lot after a wine-soaked musical evening in The Hollywood Bowl.

Sidewalk chefs in MacArthur Park saute and sell a jumbo bacon-wrapped hot dog with grilled onion and bell pepper, topped with a huge green chile, for $2.50; and the chaser is a large cup of sweet mango nectar over hand-shaved ice for $2.

That is what I filmed on a Sunday afternoon visit. A perfect caloric diversion for a balmy and warm L.A. fall afternoon. The hardworking vendors, out to make a buck, may not pass the health department's muster, but no matter to me, as I'm here for the taste and have always stopped in my tracks to taste street fare.

 Sit back and watch The 99 Cent Chef's video visit to lively and colorful MacArthur Park.
MacArthur Park Food Carts - Video

Play it here. The video runs 3 minutes.

To see the Chef's "cake left out in the rain" reference mentioned in the intro, click here for Donna Summer's version of Jimmy Webb's 8 minute, 40 second song opus "MacArthur Park", just click here.

Address: 2230 W. 6th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90057
Click here for map - Corner of Alvardo St. & Wilshire Blvd.
Phone: (213) 368-0520
Open 7 days a week during daylight hours - 8:30am to 6pm

Click here to embed or view video on youtube.


daniel john said...

The food carts are hand-made, the signs hand-lettered, and the cart wheels are a little wobbly.
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Arsalan said...

The place and the cuisine is great. Good to see the post.

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