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Deck the Halls

A tour of the trending food halls in Chicagoland

Rustle + Roux

Gourmet food halls have always been popular in Europe, but only recently have they made a big splash in the United States. For decades, in fact, Americans’ conception of a food hall equated to quick-serve food courts in malls and airports. But no longer. Chicago is now lucky to house some of the best avant-garde incarnations out there, with outposts of popular restaurants, gigantic salad bars, curated markets, and a bounty of gourmet prepared foods. These multi-faceted concepts are popping up throughout the city with no sign of slowing down. Here are seven (and an additional one on the way) that are worth checking out.

Photo Courtesy of Chicago French Market

Chicago French Market {131 North Clinton Street; 312.575.0306}

Concepts: 30 hand-selected local vendors. “We wanted to do something that’s more of a hybrid,” says Owner Sebastien Bensidoun. “We planned to offer some grocery options, but also wanted some restaurant stalls—kind of like what you’d find in a train station.” Chicago French Market offers grab-and-go dining options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, light snacks, fruits and vegetables, picnics, easy party planning, catering options for home and office, flowers, and gifts; a dining area for customers who wish to explore and relax at the market; and daily happy hours with food and drink specials, as well as live music.

Design/layout: Chicago French Market is an 18,000-square-foot food hall with a Parisian and Chicago-themed art installation, full dining areas, and authentic French café seating for 150 guests—including Parisian bistro chairs and tables (capped with blue, white, and red umbrellas) and two communal farm tables that each seat eight guests. Additional seating for up to 150 is available in the concourse, and high-tech amenities including a mobile device charging station and WiFi are also available.

bEa’s Market {671 North St. Clair Street; 312.642.0001}

Concepts: A soup bar, housemade sandwiches, and salads are on offer alongside a rotating selection of hot and cold items.

Design/layout: The back of Beatrix’s second location in Streeterville houses the small, bright white market where the salad bar is the focal point and plenty of grab-and-go options line the walls.

Photo Courtesy of Revival Food Hall

Revival Food Hall {125 South Clark Street, Chicago}

Concepts: 15 in total. This food hall gathers concepts from some of the best restaurants in the city, including Smoque BBQ, Antique Taco, Furious Spoon, and a café brimming with the best of Mindy Segal’s repertoire.

Design/layout: Housed inside a renovated 1907 Daniel Burnham-designed building, this industrial-chic space is bright and spacious with the dining concepts lining the periphery. There is plenty of communal seating—as well as cocktail tables—making it perfect for a leisurely lunch or something more on-the-go.

3 Greens Market {354 West Hubbard Street; 312.888.9195}

Concepts: The best of Hogsalt Hospitality is on display at this trendy market, from a Small Cheval Burger and Fries to pastrami from Dillman’s, along with a giant salad bar. Pop by on weekends for a full brunch bar of classic favorites.

Design/layout: The comfortable space feels like a collection of 1960’s and 1970’s living rooms with cozy vintage furniture and a mini putting green.

Rustle + Roux {227 West Monroe, Second Floor Mezzanine; 312.285.2330}

Concepts: Seven concepts, including a Mercadito Taqueria, a Mercato by Fabio Viviani, and an illy coffee bar.

Design/layout: The entryway is dramatic yet modern with a beautiful glossed wood that leads into a clean open space full of orange accents and bountiful food displays. It’s designed to welcome those who want to pick up a quick meal on the go and those who want to spend a leisurely meal among friends.

Foodlife {835 North Michigan Avenue; 312.335.3663}

Concepts: 14 different concepts, including a pizza stop, a juice bar, a taqueria, and Chinese food haven from Big Bowl.

Design/layout: The expansive space takes over the mezzanine level of the Water Tower with concepts around every corner and plenty of seating.

Photo Courtesy of Eataly

Eataly {43 East Ohio Street; 312.521.8700}

Concepts: The expansive space houses five full-service restaurants, two cafés, seven quick-serve eateries, seven fresh food counters, and 12 retail departments.

By Samantha Lande

Note: For even more details on all these Chicago destinations, pick up a copy of our Fall/Winter 2016 issue, on newsstands now.