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Grand Central Market begins transformation with debut of Sticky Rice Thai food

By Hayley Fox
Published: Wednesday, April 17, 2013, at 10:41AM
Flickr via Gypsy D

Grand Central Market is undergoing a massive transformation into an updated, open air market. Sticky Rice is one of the first of the new wave of vendors to open.

Downtown's historic Grand Central Market has begun its transformation into an updated, open air food market with the debut of Thai comfort eatery, Sticky Rice.

The restaurant is owned by David Tewasart, who also owns Thai restaurant Soi 7 on 7th Street and Grand Avenue, and Spirit House bar in Monterey Park. Tewasart is bringing his chef from Spirit House with him on this new DTLA pursuit.

The new Sticky Rice is operating on a limited lunch menu as they work through their soft opening to their official April 30 debut. The current menu includes a beef curry bowl with coconut rice, a Thai curry bowl with Garlic rice, grilled chicken and pork dishes, papaya salad and Nam Prik Num — a chili dip.

According to a press release, Sticky Rice serves "the authentic dishes that Thai families and chefs make for themselves." When it launches a full menu at the end of the month, the eatery will serve a five-spice pork belly stew and rotating selection of curries and salads — among other dishes.

"This is what Thais eat,” said Tewasart in a statement. “We’re simplifying everything and keeping the flavors authentic. It’s all about grilling, soups, salads and dips offered up with unique twists."

Sticky Rice's debut is just a part of Grand Central Market's changing face. Opened in 1917 and located right across the street from Angels Flight, the market contains about 40 stalls with vendors selling everything from seafood to pupusas, ice cream and burritos.

The Los Angeles Times reported in December that the 27,000-square-foot market will be renovated by a team of architects and designers, including one of the firms behind San Francisco's upscale Ferry Building. Project planners hope to keep some current vendors while adding new retailers of bread,cheese, wine and other quality market products.

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