Having just opened in the early spring of 2015, Le District was effectively marketed as the "French Eataly" in Brookfield Place. Unfortunately, the space feels much more confused and disoriented than its Italian inspiration, and is inevitably compared to its superior cousin because of the campaign.
Theoretically organized around various "districts" that include the Cafe District with coffee and desserts, the Market District with fresh meat, seafood, cheese, and charcuterie, the Garden District with flowers, wine, and juice, and the Restaurant District with the overpriced, uninspired French brasserie, Beaubourg, cramped Le Bar, and the soon-to-open L’Appart, Le District suffers from an unsettling lack of the hot, prepared foods at counter-service that have contributed to Eataly’s far-reaching success.
While the quality of goods for sale is incredibly high and also incredibly expensive, with many imported directly from France, shoppers tend to struggle in deciding whether to treat Le District as a specialty grocer or a destination for lunch or dinner. Much of the space is given over to the restaurants, and the lack of seating around many of the counters seems to suggest that if you’re not in Le District to dine, this French fare should be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home. All of this may be great for residents and workers in the area, but Le District and its restaurants have yet to become a food and dining destination for the rest of the city.