South L.A. isn't just a food desert. Even if we're only talking about food, and ignoring everything else that makes a community whole. There is an active food culture in Watts and the neighborhoods and cities surrounding it, discussions of whether locals are "allowed" to eat fast food notwithstanding. As these pictures show, restaurants -- along with other retail businesses -- took a hit during the 1965 Watts Uprising. But food played a part in rebuilding the area, and now restaurants like Hawkins do community work alongside serving food. It's an engaged community -- after all Roy Choi is launching his next L.A. project there.
The Los Angeles County Fair turns 100 this year. Considering all the ways the fair has entertained, informed and marketed to Angelenos over the past 100 years, here is a glimpse of a few rare attractions that have lit up local imaginations over the last century.
Roji Bakery has served the Mid-Wilshire neighborhood for the past 20 years, serving up warm, fluffy Japanese shokupan (milk bread) and other baked goods. Owner Mizuki Shin talks about the yudane technique that makes milk loaf unique and reminisces on her memories eating shokupan as a child in Japan.