Sunday, January 30, 2011

Location Profile: Food & Community

1. Mama's Hot Tamales, Westlake/MacArthur Park
2. Tribal Cafe, Historic Filipinotown
3. Mercado La Paloma, Exposition Park

1. Mama’s Hot Tamales

It might be the tamales. Or the bright pink, yellow and blue walls. Or Mama herself. Whatever the attraction, Mama’s Hot Tamales abounds with color and flavor you simply must savor.

Mama’s was established as an economic development project to help people transition from informal to professional micro-enterprises and food service occupations. As an anchor in the effort to revitalize the MacArthur Park neighborhood, Mama’s, under the leadership of Sandi “Mama” Romero, provides detailed business assistance through workshops, seminars, and hands-on-training for individuals desiring to cultivate their skills, experience, and knowledge in the food service industry. An Artist Co-Op provides local artists with a communal space where they can craft and sell their products.

By providing the neighborhood with indispensable educational opportunities for informal food providers, a common working space for local artists, and delicious food for both locals and visitors, Mama’s Hot Tamales notably supports Latin American cultural and economic development within the MacArthur Park community.

Drop by to check out the café, conveniently located next to a Metro Red Line stop and across the street from MacArthur Park. You may just need a stroll around the lake after all those tamales!

Mama's Hot Tamales
2122 West 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90057
Phone: 213.487.7474
Daily: 11am - 3:30pm

2. Tribal Cafe

Tribal Cafe serves nutritious comfort food, from fresh fruit juices to seasonal greens, grains and legumes. The café’s menu is inspired by global movements in conscious food consumption.

Located in a burgeoning enclave in Historic Filipinotown (south of Echo Park Lake), Tribal Café provides all members of the community by providing opportunities for healthy food choices at low cost to people of all income levels.

Along with their funky vibe assisted by colorfully painted walls and tables (a culinary cousin to Mama’s!), Tribal Café also offers an eclectic array of live music performances, in addition to showcasing the work of local artists. Folk Art Everywhere even dropped in for a Bollywood dance workshop (see at right)!

If you like to draw, and talk politics, come to an artist talk and workshop we’re holding next Sunday, February 6 at 2pm….

Sunday | February 6
Drawing Workshop with Votan Henriquez
2:00 – 3:30pm at Tribal Café 1651 W. Temple
FREE, no RSVP required

Artist Votan Henriquez will discuss his art work, “Movement,” on view at Tribal Café and lead a drawing workshop. Votan’s work explores several different kinds of movement—political, economic, artistic—and relates to the experiences of immigrants and native peoples. Come to Tribal Café, sample their delicious organic food, listen to music and draw from your own experiences. Votan is also the owner of Nahuí Ohlín, one of our generous hosting sites in Folk Art Everywhere!

Tribal Café
1651 W Temple St.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Phone: 213.483.4458
Daily: 9am - 12am

3. Mercado La Paloma

Mercado la Paloma, or “The Dove Marketplace,” is a unique community development project created by the Esperanza Community Housing Corporation to re-strengthen the cultural, social, economic, and health resources in the Exposition Park area, near USC.

Located in a formerly abandoned two-story warehouse, this public marketplace has become a safe and comfortable community gathering area. Not only does Mercado La Paloma provide space for local artists, health educators, and entrepreneurs, but it also houses, on the second floor, numerous community-driven non-profit organizations providing social services to low-income families.

Filled with restaurants, bakeries, and shops, you definitely want to come hungry to this marketplace! Grab a bite at one of the many delicious and authentic Mexican, Thai, and Yucatecan restaurants while you wander amid the variety of artwork, clothing, books, pottery, flowers, and jewelry shops.

As if that weren’t enough to tempt you, the marketplace also offers special events such as visual art, music and dance, book signings, lectures, and festivals.

Mercado La Paloma
3655 S Grand Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90007
Phone: 213.748.1963
Daily: 8am - 6:30pm