By Noah Parks

Hospitality has a certain luster when presented perfectly with the right preparation and intentional planning.  This is exactly how HMG+ loves to serve their guests and create lasting relationships in our growing industry.  Sometimes during Halloween we get tricked but this recent trend is only “tricked out”, and it’s called the food hall.  It’s modeled on a variety of styles and profiles of restaurants, bars, and vendors from all over the world.  There’s something easy about the style of these spaces as they’ve sprouted everywhere in the city. In a city with every type of experience it was amazing to discover a new one.

As one does, I spent most of my first few years in New York City window shopping for meals and date nights.  I lived in Hell’s Kitchen and generally speaking 9th Avenue is a buffet of good places to dine with many diverse options.  Then 46th Street was dubbed “restaurant row”, with all types of prix fixe menus and again, a variety of cuisines.  However, nothing felt like it was inviting, or as if you feel in the open air of a food hall.  Talking to owners, other guests, having a “micro” experience at one of four stools, having chefs and bartenders be able to quickly describe or show you their ingredients: food halls offer a unique peek behind the curtain of how we all get the delicious food or drinks we love.   They do it through the resource HMG+ has built our success on: people.  

Food halls offer you access to people, not an app or second hand accounts, primary research with first hand experience.  I have been taken with the DeKalb Market Place. They’ve presented the people that run the place in a way that feels like something new every time you turn the corner.  There’s clearly a lot of support for this space as well.  HMG+ knows that service professionals always need support.  In fact, what you don’t see as a guest is always just as critical as the parts you do see.  DeKalb has provided sufficient space for 30 local vendors in one place. It’s a smorgasbord of culinary delights that would have taken an individual years to discover.  This kind of exposure in a satellite location has given these restaurants and bars a much needed boost especially as we reopen after the pandemic.

Food halls create community and as we enjoy this Halloween weekend, let’s embrace the special places where all types of people can gather safely.  When we take our costumed little ones out we want to visit these amazing spaces that provide a variety of unique programming for Halloween and many holidays.  Whether you’re looking for a “boo”-zey beverage or a “Devilish” dish they offer a place for everyone to enjoy them.  Often they’re architecturally interesting, imitating station depots, streets in other parts of the world intersecting, or futuristic modernist marvels.  No matter how you celebrated Halloween, celebrate this extraordinary trend in hospitality by visiting your closest food hall! 



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