The New York Times has a piece about the just-opened FICO Eataly World in Bologna, Italy, which is noteworthy both for being much larger than the US versions, as well as more focused on educating its patrons.

An excerpt:

“It felt like a food court that had metastasized into an entire mall. In the prime spots along the walls where you’d expect to see a Hot Topic or a Yankee Candle were dozens of food producers, including a panettone bakery, a brewpub and at least three pasta manufacturers. There were kiosks specializing in street food from regions like Puglia and Calabria, as well as high-end and middlebrow restaurants. One had dedicated itself to prosciutto, and a nightclub-style “bar” focused on Bologna’s beloved cured meat, mortadella. There was no Forever 21, but the Fontanafredda enoteca boasted that it served 100 Italian wines by the glass … That was the type of gustatory hyper-consumption that I had expected. But, in the era of experiential travel, the educational angle really appealed to me.”

I’d suggest you read the story here, and just try not to get hungry.

KC's View: Which is what more food stores should aim for. Make the customers hungry, and maybe teach them something about the food, and they’re likely to buy more.