Arizona Food Halls: Where Local and International Cuisine Intersect

By Robert Gundran

August 15, 2023

Food is one of the primary ways we spend time together. Whether it’s a home-cooked meal or sitting down at a restaurant, food is the medium through which we connect with each other. Restaurants and dining at home are—necessarily—a more closed-off environment, while food halls and food courts offer more space and options.

Large cities like New York City and San Francisco have food halls all around with shops, restaurants, and bars for everyone to grab what they want and find a place to sit, eat, and talk. Food halls typically lease space to businesses, giving them places with high foot traffic and consistent exposure.

Arizona has a few food halls as well, both indoor and outdoor. Here are four you have to check out:

Mekong Plaza

66 S. Dobson Road, Mesa
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Hours:
9 a.m.–9 p.m. daily

Mekong Plaza has almost as many restaurants and shops as the other three food halls on this list combined. It’s on the southwest corner of Main Street and Dobson Road in Mesa.

Inside you can find the Mekong Supermarket, which has fruits and vegetables alongside meats, seafood, and Asian specialty items.

Mekong Plaza has eight dine-in restaurants and four restaurants in its mall-style food court. It also has a bakery, tea and coffee shop, and ice cream shop.

There are Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai, and Filipino restaurants.

There’s also a jeweler, a dentist’s office, a salon, a massage parlor, an insurance agency, an international express delivery company, and a shop that sells Buddhist cultural products and feng shui statues.

Each restaurant has different hours of operation, so be sure to check Mekong Plaza’s website to see when each restaurant is open.

The Pemberton PHX

1121 N. Second St., Phoenix
Instagram
Hours:
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays
6 p.m.–11 p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays
6 p.m.–2 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays

Arizona Food Halls: Where Local and International Cuisine Intersect

The Pemberton (Photo by Robert Gundran)

The Pemberton PHX is one of two food halls in downtown Phoenix. It’s next to Burton Barr Central Library and the Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix, just off Central Avenue.

It’s a food hall set entirely within the property of the historic Sarah H. Pemberton house, with trailers and stalls in the front, back, and side yards. The house was built in the 1920s and was placed on the Phoenix Historic Property Register in 2004.

There are 15 different vendors on the property. There are food and drink spots, as well as some shops inside the house.

Grab a beer at Hop Box, a dive bar-styled stall, and then head to Pie-Curious Pizza to get some fresh brick-oven pizza.

The Pemberton also offers salsa dancing lessons every Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m., and they have a local jewelry and arts market every Sunday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

It’s a great spot to go when the temperatures start to drop. You can spend hours just relaxing, eating, and drinking with friends at the Pemberton.

The Churchill

901 N. First St., Phoenix
Instagram
Hours:
Closed Mondays
10 a.m.–10 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Sundays
10 a.m.–midnight Thursdays
10 a.m.–1:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays

Arizona Food Halls: Where Local and International Cuisine Intersect

The Churchill (Photo by Robert Gundran)

The Churchill is another food hall in downtown Phoenix, and it was built using reclaimed shipping containers. It’s in the Roosevelt Row Arts District and has a 9,000-foot courtyard right in the center.

The Churchill has 10 businesses inside—two bars, five restaurants, a gourmet pantry and bottle shop, a self-care shop, and a clothing store.

State Forty Eight has a location in The Churchill, so you can show off Arizona pride with their merchandise.

Stoop Kid has bagels and coffee in the morning, and burgers in the afternoon and evening.

The Brill Line and So Far So Good are both cocktail bars with specialized drink menus.

There’s plenty of seating in the center of the courtyard, as well as another seating area on the second floor.

The Churchill also offers reservations for business dinners, wedding receptions, and fundraisers. Every first Tuesday they host bingo. Keep an eye on their Instagram for upcoming events.

The Boxyard

238 N. Fourth Ave., Tucson
Instagram
Hours:
11 a.m.–midnight Mondays through Wednesdays
11 a.m.–2 a.m. Thursdays through Sundays

This Tucson food hall has four restaurants, two bars, and a coffee shop. The Boxyard is in downtown Tucson, on the southeast corner of Eighth Street and Fourth Avenue.

Sal’s Fat Slice sells pizza by the slice, as well as wings, fries, salads, and submarine sandwiches.

Los Perches Urban Sonoran Grill has burritos, tacos, and quesadillas alongside hot dogs and french fries.

You can find chicken tikka masala, butter chicken, and paneer tikka masala at Spice Box.

Drop by Nhu Lan Vietnamese Food for five different types of banh mi at only $5. You can also get a Vietnamese coffee.

You can book an event at The Boxyard, and they have special events on their website’s calendar.

READ MORE: 8 Arizona Restaurants That Have Been Featured on Food Network

Author

  • Robert Gundran

    Robert Gundran grew up in the Southwest, spending equal time in the Valley and Southern California throughout his life. He graduated from Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism in 2018 and wrote for The Arizona Republic and The Orange County Register.

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