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Explore the Latest Foodservice Trend During Food and Fuel Study Tour: Food Halls

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

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Food halls—modern-day food courts with high-end, quality food offerings—are continuing to grow throughout the country as today’s consumers gravitate towards fast, fresh meals as well as an overall dining experience. Food halls go beyond food and many offer a retail experience, artisan products and communal dining under one roof.

“Food halls also reflect the way more Americans are eating these days, allowing for people to sample a lot of different items (a la small plates) in one place,” The Washington Post reported. “They encapsulate the move away from fine dining to casual eating, as well as the growing interest in street food.”

Some food halls are focused on a single ethnic category, such as Italian, while others pull together options from local chefs. Two of the most popular food halls are Eataly and Revival Food Hall, both located in Chicago.

The NATSO Foundation will be offering truckstop and travel plaza operators an in-depth look at both locations as part of the NATSO's Food and Fuel Study Tour, July 18-20. Learn more about NATSO's Food and Fuel Study Tour here.

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Revival Food Hall, a massive, 24,000-square-foot marketplace, is an all-local dining concept spotlighting the best of Chicago’s acclaimed culinary scene under one roof. The location opened in 2016 and has 15 fast-casual stalls featuring many of Chicago’s favorite neighborhood restaurants in a grab-and-go setting. There are also a handful of all-new concepts debuting from several acclaimed Chicago chefs.

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During the tour, Marisa Kruse, general manager of Revival Food Hall, will share her insight into the location’s operations. Next attendees will tour Revival Food Hall guided by Darren Schutle, NATSO’s vice president of membership, and Ed Burcher, an industry leader and prinical at Burcher Consulting. Attendees will receive gift certificates to use to see the customer experience.

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Eataly is an amazing Italian marketplace that features fresh food, restaurants, food counters, bars, groceries and a cooking school within 65,000 square feet of space. Chicago Magazine called Eataly a “glorious, infuriating and very tasty circus.” Rather than having food options grouped together in a food court, each restaurant has its own character. For example, the fish station has a more relaxed atmosphere than the pizza station even though they are near each other. 

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During the tour, attendees will see short presentations and take part in a question-and-answer session with Eataly’s QSR manager and retail manager. They will get a chance to walk the store and enjoy lunch at the location.

// Registration for the event is $1,000 for members and $1,500 for nonmembers. See the full schedule for NATSO's Food and Fuel Study Tour, which will be held July 18 - 20 in Chicago, here.  For more information, contact Schulte at dschulte@natso.com or (915) 526-5820 with questions.

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About the Author

Amy Toner

Amy Toner

Toner markets NATSO products, services and meetings. She is the content editor of NATSO's core websites, Stop Watch magazine and Highway Business Matters biweekly articles. In addition, she provides creative services across all departments. Toner joined NATSO in 2006. Prior to joining the association, she served as director of membership services at an association for ambulatory surgery centers. Toner lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and son.

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