1897 Market in Charlotte Douglas International Airport’s Main Atrium is now open and seeks to offer travelers a world-class culinary adventure before their next flight. 1897 Market is a brand new, distinctive, urban-gourmet marketplace. 1897 Market at Charlotte Airport by global restaurateur HMSHost marks the brand’s debut to the traveling public.

Named for the year HMSHost was founded, then as the Van Noy Railway Newsbusiness, the inspiration for 1897 Market comes from a lasting legacy and was developed through a partnership with chef and television personality Todd English. Cues from English’s knowledge of culinary traditions and emerging food trends from around the world are infused into 1897 Market.

“Creating and launching 1897 Market is a huge step into the future of dining for HMSHost as well as for travelers of Charlotte Douglas International Airport. With this new brand we are offering travelers an unparalleled experience with high-quality dining, drinking, and shopping choices all rolled into one location,” says HMSHost vice president of Business Development, Stephen Douglas. “We are extremely excited to see 1897 Market open and we thank the airport for being a committed partner and for trusting our vision with this unique concept.”

The air in 1897 Market is filled by savory aromas from grilled meats (all hormone-free), sounds of specialty cocktails being shaken, and sights of pizza dough being tossed high before sliding into the hearth. Travelers can eat, drink, and explore the marketplace, complete with the sights, sounds, and smells of exhibition cooking, craft cocktail preparation, and premium shopping.

Drawing on a 118-year history of industry innovation and experience specializing in serving people on the move, the modern vision for 1897 Market is grounded in HMSHost’s evolving focus on innovation in food and service.

“We did not hold back with 1897 Market, and in many ways the features that have been incorporated into this initial location in Charlotte Douglas represent the realization of a wish list we had of assembling a definitive blend of dining and marketplace options for travelers. We wanted to evoke the combined sensations of visiting a chef-driven restaurant, a modern full-service culinary-driven grocer, and a specialty goods store,” says HMSHost vice president of Adult Beverage and Restaurant Development, Frank Sickelsmith. “1897 Market is a brand that truly represents who we are at HMSHost and is what we would design if given free reign and the freedom to not spare any detail or idea.”

“Charlotte Douglas International Airport is honored to be the first location of 1897 Market, HMSHost’s new flagship brand,” says Charlotte Douglas International Airport interim aviation director, Brent Cagle. “We congratulate HMSHost on this accomplishment and are pleased to offer this new dining experience to our customers.”

1897 Market is not just a restaurant; it is meant to be a destination for partaking in creative culinary expression and enjoyment. Eating at 1897 Market is a foodie experience with recipes using local and regional ingredients crafted with multiple layers of professional culinary observation and hands-on effort. A walk through the restaurant displays a raw bar and a lively exhibition kitchen with spectacles of a carvery, an aromatic grill, and a woodstone pizza oven.

Menus displaying a multitude of high quality choices for travelers are posted on chalk boards throughout the marketplace. With a focus on quality and taste, guests will enjoy starters like Dirty Mac & Cheese, Parmesan Herb Chicken Tenders, and Spicy Shrimp Toast. Featured entrée fare includes the likes of steak frites with a whisky-peppercorn cream sauce, while the bbq shrimp & grits made with local stone-ground cheddar grits is afitting southern staple for this North Carolina venue. The raw bar features East and West Coast oysters and Middleneck clams. The “Early Risers” breakfast menu features a variety of omelets made with fresh veggies and meat from the carvery, as well as Greek yogurt parfaits and buttermilk pancakes.

The bar in 1897 Market is a destination for sophisticated refreshment, offering a unique
drinking experience that features a variety of domestic, imported, and craft brews, Scotches and small batch bourbons bottled in bond, and premium wines from the world’s most celebrated regions. Guests will be visually stimulated as they can observe bartenders expertly perform classic cocktail techniques such as muddling, layering, and infusing.

The marketplace component of 1897 Market is traditional town and country style, meets epicurean panache—think upscale, polished shabby chic. As guests make their way through the market’s lightly stained oak shelving (similar in appearance to a hutch in a country home) and library-style rolling ladders, thoughts go to shopping in the general store on the corner in the old days. The marketplace features a cornucopia of items that a traveler will specifically enjoy picking up for a gift or something special to take home, such as tins of gourmet nuts, specialty candies, and a carry-on cocktail kit which includes all the necessary items to make an ‘emergency’ cocktail (sans liquor).

Nearly everything about 1897 Market is designed with the traveler in mind and creating a welcome occasion in the terminal that is outside of the set itinerary. The layout of the marketplace, the menu, and even the items for sale are all carefully selected to be cognizant of the needs guests have in an airport. For travelers with varying time constraints, a robust to-go component is available in addition to the sit-down ding area, and travelers flying solo will also find copious seating with barstool seating surrounding the exhibition kitchen like a horseshoe with a view.

1897 Market was first conceptualized when HMSHost’s restaurant design team, also responsible for successful national brands such as PZA and Beaudevin—which can both be found in Charlotte Douglas International Airport also—recognized the desire to build something that would excite travelers with a completely unique experience in the airport. At 1897 Market, travelers will find a completely new way to enjoy Charlotte Douglas International Airport with HMSHost.

Bar Management, Industry News, NextGen Casual, Restaurant Design