Other cities have food halls.
A few blocks from the Stock Show grounds, Fort Worth now has its own food barn.
Even amid tony West 7th shops, the new Crockett Row Food Hall feels like a comfy place to grab a burger and a beer.
“This is more casual than the other food halls, and I think more fun,” said John Tesar, the Dallas steak master opening the first Fort Worth location of his Knife Burger walk-up stand.
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The food hall follows a recent fad of opening festival marketplaces. They’re like mall food courts, but with better chefs serving unique local cuisine from kiosks.
Tesar’s Knife is one of the anchors along with Abe Froman’s of Fort Worth — chef Victor Villarreal’s tribute to the “Sausage King of Chicago.”
The Crockett hall is much more down home than the area’s other food hall in Plano, Tesar said.
“This place has all these apartment residents — it’s turning into more of a neighborhood bar with a lot of food options,” he said.
Knife Burger also serves Tesar’s signature burger of the moment, the Ozersky. It’s, named for a late magazine food writer who loved hamburger history.
Ozersky looked into the history of Athens’ claim as the home of the hamburger. Tesar’s Knife Burger is very similar to that first 1904 Athens burger, served by “Uncle Fletch” Davis.
It’s a half-pound of beef, hand-packed and loaded with cheese and onion onto a simple bun.
“It’s something you can have and enjoy for the same price [about $6] as a fast-food burger,” Tesar said.
“But this brings back memories of that first really good burger you ever had.”
“The poke guys are great,” Tesar said.