Street foods and local foods are a rising trend. This has caused the growth in popularity of food halls and markets across the US. From Miami to Seattle and from Los Angeles to New York, food halls are growing in number and conquering every city with an offer of high-quality ingredients and delicious food bites. In fact, according to a study by Cushman & Wakefield, it is projected that 2018 will end with a sum total of 180 food halls across the US, getting to 300 by the end of 2020. As you can see, they have become a trendy culinary option for foodies and an opportunity to try new, varied, and unique food ideas in the same place. While we can’t mention them all, these are some of the best food halls in the US.
Casa Tua Cucina — Miami, FL
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Located at Sacks Fith Avenue in Brickell City Centre, Miami’s first Italian food hall opened its doors in January 2018. The heart of this culinary space is the kitchen, shared by the 10 different chefs and dining stations in Casa Tua Cucina. 300 customers can try at an affordable price their gourmet Italian and Mediterranean dishes prepared with the finest ingredients.
“Every product we source will have a story, and every team member is excited to share it with customers” points out Gilberto Vendramin, a 20-year-experienced professional in the sector who flew in from Italy to accept the challenge of coordinating it all. An extra attraction for foodies dining at Casa Tua Cucina is the window by the entrance, from where they can see the chefs working. This food hall also has a bar with a special selection of Italian wines, a flower market, a bakery, and a home goods shop.
French Market — New Orleans, LA
We couldn’t leave out of this list the famous French Market. It’s the oldest food hall in the US, with a history dating back to 1791. The market has grown with time, and now it expands over 6 blocks that include the Dutch Alley (home of artists and a temple of Jazz), the Upper Pontalba shop building at Jackson Square, the shops at The Colonnade in Decatour Street, Crescent Park, a farmer’s market, a craft market, a flea market, and quite several cafés and dining spots.
TAKEAWAY: The French Market has been featured in several films thanks to its popular oldest tenant, Café Du Monde. But most recently you might have seen it in John Favreau’s 2014 movie “Chef.” The whole movie is about food, family, love, and culture, and there was no better place to portray that than New Orleans’ French Quarter. During a scene, Favreau’s character takes his son to Café Du Monde and buys him a beignet while saying: “Eat it slow. You’re never going to taste your first beignet again.”
Chelsea Market — New York, NY
Chelsea Market is one of the many food markets in New York. With 35 vendors filling the old Nabisco factory by the Hudson River (where Oreo cookies were invented), you can find almost anything you are looking for foodwise. Try the sweet bite-sized mini doughnuts from the Doughnuttery, or buy the hottest sauces at Heatonist. And if you are looking for a fine-dining experience, visit Iron Chef Morimoto’s restaurant for a great Japanese food experience. But Chelsea Market doesn’t only offer prepared foods.
Since 2017 there’s an underground level called Chelsea Local. It sells fresh ingredients such as seafood, meat, vegetables, and fruits, which also supplies the restaurants in the above level. And once your stomach is full, you can spend the afternoon shopping at Posman Books, Artists & Fleas or Chelsea Market Baskets.
Pike Place Market — Seattle, WA
Created in 1907, Pike Place Market was the solution found to give farmers and consumers the opportunity to sell and buy fresh foods without middlemen that ramped up the prices. It was such a great idea that the farmers that appeared on opening day were sold out by lunchtime. Since then, and despite some rocky times during and after World War II, the market has flourished and become a landmark of Seattle.
Among the many offerings of Pike Place Market you can find local fruit and vegetable stalls, fish stands with the daily catch flying over the counter, a craft market with handmade creative products, the first Starbucks coffee shop, collectibles and magic shops, an urban garden, and, of course, an amazing array of street food and dining options. Therefore, if you don’t want to miss a thing make sure to reserve the whole day to explore this public market.
Grand Central Market — Los Angeles, CA
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Finally, in business since 1917, the Grand Central Market has always been an essential part of Downtown Los Angeles. The key? Evolving alongside the city and the people living in it. Grand Central Market’s mission is to represent the cultural and culinary diversity of the city of Los Angeles and to gather them all in one place of reference. Always filled at lunchtime, this food hall has a delicious offer that caters to every taste.
An unmissable stop at Sarita’s Pupuseria, one of the oldest vendors, will get you transported to El Salvador when trying one of the pupusas (filled corn tortillas). Other vendors worth mentioning are Wexler’s Deli for a taste of Jewish kosher food featuring pastrami, DTLA Cheese for a trip to cheese heaven or the Golden Road Brewing for a nice refreshing sip of local craft beer. So whatever your cravings are, you just need to follow the neon lights.
After reading this, you must be looking forward to visiting all of these markets and filling your stomach with their yummy foods. If you are a foodie, you might even want to take a tour visiting the best food markets in the US. But if you have already been to all of them, don’t worry, food halls are not only here to stay, but to conquer the cities and fill them with flavor.