A local food hall that has been in the works for nearly three years is making its long-awaited debut. Called Maple street food hallit’s a new concept in the Dallas Medical District offering a collection of five chef-led food concepts under one roof, including cuisines such as Asian, Mexican, Healthy/Organic, Café and Bar complete.
Located at 4711 Maple St., the business was founded by Roy Quintanilla, an entrepreneur who previously operated businesses at DFW Airport, with the goal of serving the Medical District and Oak Lawn as well as diners looking for gastronomic adventures.
He is also a brave effort by Quintanilla and his family to avoid redevelopment by repurposing the former Quintanilla furniture store, which they moved to the street.
The 8,400 square foot building has been divided into vendor spaces, with a shared common area, a full bar, and a brand new 1,000 square foot outdoor patio on the side of the building.
Three well-known restaurants have already opened, and more are in the pipeline, including a household name:
Mai Eats Lao cuisine and tropical juice bar. Mai Eats is a family business founded by entrepreneur Anita Dangerfield that brings Lao cuisine to the DFW community. They started at the Dallas Farmers Market in 2018, only operating on weekends, and are now excited to have the opportunity to share Lao culture through delicious Lao food every day.
Their spring rolls are hand rolled and filled with beef and vegetables, served with chili sauce and topped with crushed peanuts. They are also known for their fresh juices such as watermelon, pineapple, orange, and grapefruit, made to order and served inside the fruit; and their Lao CocoCurry, a red curry with fresh cut vegetables over sweet jasmine rice, served in a reusable coconut bowl. They are very vegan and make vegetarian versions to which they add shredded chicken if requested.
The Calle. Specializing in handmade tortillas, with a menu of tacos, bowls, burritos and quesadillas.
Lalas Coffee Green. Founded by Michelle Mireles, former owner of Jorge’s Mexican at One Arts District, Lalas opened at the Preston Center in 2017 but closed due to the pandemic. The restaurant still has a loyal following for dishes such as the Sweet Potato and Zucchini Bowl, Vital Farms Egg Salad and Vegan Cakes.
The Crooked Tree Bar & Biergarten. Serving cocktails with a mixologist on staff, as well as international beers, a huge selection of tequilas, and fun drinks like a spiky icy pink lemonade.
Quintanilla is a Dallas native and a founding board member of DART whose community efforts have included serving on the city’s Board of Adjustment. He has an in-depth knowledge of the neighborhood and a clear vision of what the food hall can bring.
“The idea is to have a collection of creative offerings that complement each other – I was definitely going for diversity,” he says. “And also to have authentic, independent places that make great versions of their own food. Mai Eats has some of the best curries I’ve ever tried.”
“Breakfast was also important – with all the hospital staff there is definitely a shortage of breakfast options,” he says.
It has integrated a modern and user-friendly ordering system, where you can scan a QR code, submit an order online or use a touch pad on the front stand. There is also a convenient curbside pickup stand at the back of the building where you can drive directly.
Quintanilla is still solving the last two providers and managed to prevail even despite the pandemic and some very slow wheels at City Hall.
“I’ve lived here all my life, Quintanilla Furniture was one of the originals in Little Mexico, it’s been around for 67 years,” he says. “But the neighborhood is changing, and I saw there was a need for something like that.”