Salley Chung said she wanted to build something for the community. So using shipping containers, Chung opened The Deck Food Park in October.

“I said, ‘I would love to see something in the community that has a flair,’” Chung said. “We came up with this design where we turned Conexes into kitchens.”

Chung said the permitting process was tough because of the uniqueness of the venture.

“I know in Montgomery County, we were the first because, during permitting, it was really, really tough because they did not know what to do with us,” Chung said. “They never had a place like this before. ... We’re like a cross between a brick-and-mortar and a food truck.”

Made with Conex shipping containers, The Deck Food Park features a large outdoor seating area. Stacked Conexes create a second level that has more seating and rooms available for rent.

“To build a house like this kind of a shape and structure, it would be very, very difficult,” Chung said. “But with Conexes, you could. You can stack them, you can do all kinds of stuff with them, make it a little bit more different.”

With separate concepts housed in colorfully painted shipping container kitchens—Ceviche Ria, Ninja Chick’n, Taqueria No. 21 and Yummy Pho & Banh Mi—guests at The Deck can try a variety of dishes, from Korean crispy fried chicken and ceviche to tacos and pho.

There is also one more kitchen available for another concept to use.

“Different people can come and do their food,” Chung said. “That’s what my vision is. They can come, introduce their kinds of food.”

Open seven days a week, The Deck Food Park is pet-friendly, with a yard space with games.

“It’s a very relaxing, very family-oriented [place],” Chung said.

When it comes to the concepts, some of the restaurants, like Ceviche Ria, have locations elsewhere while others only have a location at The Deck.

“Let’s say you want to open a restaurant, but you want to test sample a menu,” Chung said. “This is a great place—[it’s] small, easy. You can put a new recipe out and then test it out.”

Chung also said much of The Deck’s business is to-go orders through services like Grubhub and Uber Eats.

Chung said the plan for The Deck is to keep the momentum going.

“I always get that—when people stop here for the first time, they say, ‘Oh wow,’” she said. “I get that ‘Oh wow’ a lot. And I love that. I love ... hearing that [people] actually appreciate the food that’s here, enjoy the environment.”

The Deck Food Park
  • 5802 FM 1488, Magnolia
  • Hours: Mon. 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Tue.-Sat. 11 a.m.-8 p.m., Sun. noon-6 p.m.