Chris G’s Best Yelp Reviews: El Adobe Market – 4/5 Stars

El Adobe Market
$ Grocery, Beer, Wine & Spirits
5203 Hollywood Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90027

This awful bodega is iconic! El Adobe Market is the place most famously known as the location of the occult shop for The Craft in 1996. It was filmed at the shopping center and inside the space at the left of actual market (5205 Hollywood Blvd.) The spaces to the left of the market, the stairwell to secondary spaces all used to all be El Adobe Market back in the 1920s. Back then the central building where the current El Adobe Market is located didn’t exist but the peripheral building did. It was all called “El Adobe.”

The actual El Adobe Market building was built sometime later in the 1930s or 1940s. It offered a delicatessen/carniceria and panaderia/bakery. El Adobe Market is featured in this book about the history of drive-ins and supermarkets in early Los Angeles as being one of the first places to offer a commercial shopping center – a place where people can park their old-fashioned cars in the parking lot of the shopping center rather than on the street.

Sometime in the 1970s or 1980s – way before Fairuza Balk and Neve Campbell walked through the shopping center to the occult store on The Craft, this place was separated into a ton of other stores and private spaces. One of the spaces includes a recording studio dubbed “Hollywood’s only complete recording center” by the late founder and owner of Capitol Records Glenn Wallichs who made off-the-air test recordings of George Burns, Gracie Allen, Jack Benny and Bob Hope back in the day here. The recording studio and occult store were located where the stairwell leads to, but unfortunately it is all gated, closed off and covered and sadly left in a kind of derelict condition.

Honestly, when I saw The Craft the other day, the El Adobe Market shopping center looks virtually the same in 1996 as it does in 2016. El Adobe Market has at some point in the late 20th century gotten rid of their delicatessen and bakery and turned into just-another-bodega offering over-priced $3 bottles of water, lots of alcohol and run-of-the-mill AMPM types of snacks with no prices listed. I don’t blame those who give El Adobe Market one or two star reviews. This place is terrible and reminds me of a pit stop in Kettleman City en route to San Francisco! Unfortunately for me, I live 100 feet away from it and only ever go here if I’m out of laundry quarters to buy a popsicle and make change. It’s a shame that the owners don’t spruce it up or make those ceramic parking lot tiles shine as they once did in the 1930s (see pictures). But I appreciate that it offers an amazingly colorful 90-year-old history.

Useful:Funny:Cool: 7