But new food halls and plans for them are popping up faster than prairie dogs on the Western plain.
Here’s an early peek at just-opened food halls, as well as those on the horizon for late this year and into 2018.
1. SteelCraft; Long Beach, Calif.
Here’s a space that combines food halls with another on-trend design approach: shipping containers. The nine concepts at this open-air hall are all housed in recycled shipping containers that once served the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, the Los Angeles Times reports. The food hall, which opened earlier this year, includes Steelhead Coffee, Smog City Brewery, DeSano Pizza Bakery, Working Class Kitchen (sandwiches and salads), Tajima (ramen), Waffle Love, Pig Pen Delicacy (pork-based comfort foods), the Fresh Shave (Hawaiian shave ice) and Lovesome Chocolates.
2. Portland Food Hall; Portland, Ore.
This eight-unit food hall partially opened earlier this month, but it’s still looking for two more vendors, Eater reports. The 4,000-square-foot hall will feature mezzanine seating as well as a cocktail bar from Minibar. It will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week. It is the third food hall to open in downtown Portland, Ore., in the past year. The hall includes Moberi (smoothies), Cosa (coffee), The Whole Bowl (better-for-you build-your-own bowls), Aiko Ramen (ramen), Boke Dokie (fried chicken sandwiches), and Minibar.
3. Trade Food Hall; Irvine, Calif.
Concepts are still opening in this nine-stall food hall, which features two operations from Slapfish creator Andrew Gruel. The hall is a $5 million venture to transform an old food court in a 32,000-square-foot shopping center into an open-air hall, according to The Orange County Register. Most Trade operators are MCOs. Center Hub bar will serve cocktails, beer and wine.
4. Workshop; Charleston, S.C.
Here’s an interesting riff on the theme: This assemblage features a rotating lineup of five vendors who’ll have terms from one month to one year. The hall, slated to open today, features copper-cookware decor and lighting. Initial tenants are Pink Bellies (Vietnamese), Kite Noodles (Korean), and JD Loves Cheese (grilled cheese). A Tex-Mex concept and a pizza place are scheduled to launch soon, along with Bad Wolf Coffee (which will take up permanent residence in the hall). Vendors can sell alcohol, if they choose, says Charleston City Paper. The hall seats 100 indoors, with more seats outside.
5. The Auction House Market, New Orleans
Construction is scheduled to begin early next month on this 10-stall hall, created by the team behind St. Roch Market. (St. Roch Market opened in New Orleans two years ago, and another is in the works for Nashville.) The new market will make its home in what was previously the New Orleans Auction Galleries, a structure built in the late 1800s. The food hall will feature independent operators and will include a space for special events, according to Eater.
6. Square Mixx; Buena Park, Calif.
This Asian-themed food hall will take up the second floor of a planned $400 million multiuse development. It’s not due to open until early next year, but is expected to include a mix of Korean, Japanese, Taiwanese and Thai restaurants, The Orange County Register reports. The seven-story development also includes a 175-room Hilton hotel, a 4-D movie theater and fine-dining restaurants.
7. Fareground; Austin, Texas
This food truck-focused city is getting its first food hall later this year. The space will include indoor and outdoor seating. The concept roster includes wild-game tacos from Dai Due Taqueria, locally-focused Henbit, ice cream and sweets from Honeybit, sushi and ramen from Ni-Kome, and burgers and chicken from Contigo, Eater reports.
8. The Commissary; Oklahoma City, Okla.
A run-down service station is being turned into Oklahoma City’s first food hall. The service station, built in 1923, will have space for nine concepts, according to The Oklahoman. Developers say the project will be completed late this year.