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Gifted Gourmet

The food hall: a gourmet institution

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from Travel and Leisure

Around the world, the food hall is recognized as a gourmet institution, filled with gorgeous snacks and global delicacies. Here, our choice picks, from Berlin to Tokyo.

KaDeWe   Berlin

Stocking more than 30,000 kinds of edibles—Berlin's enormous department-store food emporium will excite even the most jaded epicure.

Selfridges   Birmingham, England

Selfridges wins for sleekest design. Whether it's Wagyu beef or Moravian spice cookies ...

Peck's Milan

Peck's is a lavish mini-empire, with several shops (don't miss the 600-label wine cellar or Casa del Formaggio), a rotisserie ...

La Grande Épicerie, Le Bon Marché   Paris

Pick up one of 80 types of olive oil, a whole lobe of foie gras, or a très chic sushi tray ...

Takashimaya Times Square  Tokyo

stocked with 70 brands of salt, fanciful sozai (prepared foods), and rare teas—

Have you ever visited a food hall which made you weak in the knees from the profusion of culinary delights?

Share your favorites here with us ....

My favorites are in London: Harrod's and Fortnum and Mason ...

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Strictly speaking it's a shop rather than a food hall but the feel is the same and it is known as the Fortnums of the North, so I plump for Lewis and Coopers in Northallerton, Yorkshire for that kid in a candy store feeling.

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Lewis and Coopers in Northallerton, Yorkshire for that kid in a candy store feeling.

Thanks for this great link which I would never have found on my own!

You do agree with me on my assertions above on Fortnums and Harrod's, no? :rolleyes:

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You missed Harvey Nicks, but food halls, at least the likes of Harrods and Fortnums are pretty well only for tourists and people who don't know better. Admittedly they are worth going as a tourist attraction for the sites and smells (and the people), but really you can get better, fresher, more exotic, and certainly cheaper...you don't see restauranters buying there, even for rarities.

Also IMO, their hampers, both Harrods and Fortnums leave a lot to be desired. I've been disappointed in both when they have been given to me

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In Houston, TX there is a liquor store, Spec's which has over 10000 types of wine hundreds of cheeses, and tons of pates as well as exotic groceries from all over the world. This is the Texas food court. We drink a lot. :biggrin:

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When the Strawbridge family was still at the helm, Strawbridge & Clothier had a very fine Food Hall at its 8th and Market flagship store. Stockton Strawbridge decided to add it to his store's offerings after a trip to Harrods in the 1970s. As I've never seen Harrods Food Hall--only heard about it--I can't say whether he got the execution right, but he certainly understood the concept, and it was one of the real treats of shopping at Strawbridge's main store. (The chain did not put smaller Food Halls in its suburban branches--this was an only-in-Philly department.)

Under May management, the Food Hall became an afterthought. It will go away completely when the 8th and Market store closes in two months. Macy's will open in the historic John Wanamaker store five blocks west.

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When the Strawbridge family was still at the helm, Strawbridge & Clothier had a very fine Food Hall at its 8th and Market flagship store. Stockton Strawbridge decided to add it to his store's offerings after a trip to Harrods in the 1970s.  As I've never seen Harrods Food Hall--only heard about it--I can't say whether he got the execution right, but he certainly understood the concept, and it was one of the real treats of shopping at Strawbridge's main store.  (The chain did not put smaller Food Halls in its suburban branches--this was an only-in-Philly department.)

When I lived in Phila (Old City) I used to stop in there every Saturday on my way home from Karate class to pick up lemon yogurt muffins, warm fom the oven... :smile:

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The food halls of Japan are wonderful. They are called depachika (short for department store basement) in Japanese and after 15 years here I still have not tired of them. :biggrin:

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