Los Angeles is a long way from New Orleans, but The Original Farmers Market at Third and Fairfax will bring the ways of the Bijou state to Angelenos this weekend, as it kicks off the 26th annual Mardi Gras Celebration, on Valentine’s Day, February 14. The three-day event will feature bead throwing, beignets, Dixie beer, face painting, and a lineup of music including Cajun and Zydeco bands and strolling performers.
The boisterous, family friendly celebration includes special menu items from the many of the market’s 120 vendors. Chef Clinton and his crew at famed The Gumbo Pot will cook up their world-class jambalaya and Cajun gumbo, including alligator gumbo, along with catfish, crawfish pie, and many Cajun-spiced dishes.
The Normandie Bakery, run by the wonderfully sweet baker Josette, will slice up traditional King Cake, coated with purple, green and gold sugars and complete with a Baby Jesus baked inside.
Bob’s Coffee and Doughnuts will serve puffed and powder-sugared fried dough treats that New Orleanians know as donuts but tourists call beignets. E.B’s and other bars at the market will be serving favorite beers of the Big Easy, such as Dixie Beer and Abita Purple Haze. Rumor has it that one of the market’s sushi vendors will feature a special crawfish roll.
Besides the cost of food and drink, the entire event is free. Festivities continue into the evening hours over the weekend and wrap up February 17 with a Fat Tuesday finale 6 to 9 pm featuring Eddie Baytos and The Nervis Bros playing on the West Patio. For more information and a full schedule of bands and activities, visit www.farmersmarketla.com.