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Fatal Shooting Outside Grand Central Market Sends Diners and Workers Running for Cover

Plus, a kind note about a hardworking hospitality veteran, and new events to know about around Los Angeles this week

A public market teems with customers and neon signs at daytime.
Customers at Grand Central Market.
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

A burst of gunfire sent customers and workers at Grand Central Market running out of the building on Saturday, May 14, with multiple social media videos showing workers, locals, and tourists ducking behind tables and around corners to seek shelter. One person was killed on the sidewalk along Hill Street, steps from G&B Coffee, Horse Thief, and other restaurant vendors. So far, no motive has been reported and police say they are actively looking for a suspect. Grand Central Market, meanwhile, called the sidewalk shooting an “isolated incident” and noted that they will be tightening security around the historic, century-old public market.

The shooting comes as part of a devastating weekend of gun violence in America, including a racially motived, anti-Black shooting in Buffalo, New York that left 10 people dead, and a shooting in Orange County, CA at a Taiwanese church.

One of the best in the business

Here’s an awesome piece over at Robb Report about Kato general manager Nikki Reginaldo, who is helping to push the Michelin-starred Downtown restaurant to new hospitality heights.

Korean fried chicken on the move

Korean fried chicken specialist Bonchon is said to be expanding within Los Angeles, adding at least three new locations beginning next year. That’s per What Now LA, which says that franchisee Kenneth Park is plotting to jump from the main LA hub in San Gabriel to several other undisclosed LA County locations in the very near future. The international chain already has locations across the United States, and several more in the greater LA market in Fountain Valley, Costa Mesa, Artesia, and beyond.

Drift Kitchen says goodbye

The Drift Kitchen is no more in Santa Monica, reports Toddrickallen. Instead, a new spot named Vamos Vamos is arriving soon — at least according to some ABC paperwork currently up in the window at 2917 Main Street. Meanwhile, find Drift Kitchen operating as a pop-up out of Rocketship Coffee over on Melrose.

Unionization wins at local Starbucks

Those two Long Beach area Starbucks locations have become the first shops to unionize in Southern California, says the Long Beach Post, adding to a growing national trend that has seen multiple Starbucks worker units band together for higher wages and better working conditions. The swell could have major implications for one of the country’s largest restaurant employers.

Events to know around town

Los Angeles Magazine’s Burgers, Bourbon, and Beer festival is back at the Bloc in Downtown LA this week. The Thursday, May 19 event will feature bites from Tripp Burgers, Say It Ain’t So, and others; tickets run for $75.

Meanwhile, L.A. Taco is back with its own Taco Madness public event, this time at Santa Anita Park. The Saturday, May 21 affair runs from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. and features big local names like Teddy’s Red Tacos, Villa’s Tacos, Los Dorados, and more.