2014 MORE THAN 140 IDEAS ABOUT YOUR FUTURE
w w w. s y s c o.c om
WHAT’S LOCALLY GROWN PRODUCE sustainable seafood
environmental sustainability non-wheat noodles/pasta FRUIT/VEGETABLE CHILDREN'S SIDE ITEMS
SIMPLICITY/BACK TO BASICS hybrid desserts
whole grain items in kids' meals
non-wheat noodles/pasta FRUIT/VEGETABLE CHILDREN'S SIDE ITEMS
simplicity/back to basics
2014 Chef Survey
HEALTHFUL KIDS' MEALS unusual/uncommon herbs locally grown produce FARM/ESTATE BRANDED
LOCALLY SOURCED MEATS nutrition AND SEAFOOD gluten-free cuisine specialty ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
www.restaurant.org December 2013 O H
L The National Restaurant Association's annual What’s Hot culinary forecast predicts menu trends for the year ahead by surveying nearly L H H 1,300 professional chefs – members of the American Culinary Federation (ACF) – and the results for 2014 are in. E B p V H H
Culinary forecast conﬁrms sourcing, nutrition trends H
L U The top restaurant menus trends for 2014 focus on local sourcing, environmental sustainability and nutrition - children's nutrition D H D H B H E in particular. These trends have been gaining momentum for several years, indicating that these wider themes inﬂuence the national U D D N H N culinary scene. E DL N
E H “Today’s consumers are more interested than ever in what they eat and where their food comes from, and that is reﬂected in our menu trends N B N D A L research,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the National Restaurant Association’s research and knowledge group. “True trends – N E B p N T D H A as opposed to temporary fads – show the evolution of the wider shifts of our modern society over time, and focus on the provenance U of various food and beverage items, unique aspects of how they are prepared and presented, as well as the dietary proﬁles of those meals. ” H N
D “The American Culinary Federation chefs who took part in the survey understand that sourcing locally and environmental sustainability tie c N D E N in with ongoing eﬀorts to provide more-healthful foods for everyone, especially children, ” said Thomas Macrina, ACF national president. E T N L R “Chefs recognize that nutrition is a vital component of the foodservice industry, and constantly revise and update recipes to reﬂect the F c S G N ” U concerns and desires of a diverse group of consumers who are looking for good food choices to best meet their nutrition and other needs. L N E V N Get the full results of the survey for 2014 at Restaurant.org/FoodTrends E H F M S
R In addition, the What’s Hot in 2014 survey found that the top ﬁve alcohol and cocktail trends will be micro-distilled/artisan spirits, L N N E V G E N locally produced beer/wine/spirits, onsite barrel-aged drinks, culinary cocktails (e.g. savory, fresh ingredients), and regional F N signature cocktails. R N c
L W E When asked which current food trend will be the hottest menu trends 10 years from now, environmental sustainability topped the list, E E N R H N followed by local sourcing, health-nutrition, children’s nutrition and gluten-free cuisine. N R
N c E G W The ﬁve items with the highest ranking as a waning trend in 2014 were foam/froth/air, bacon-ﬂavored chocolate, ﬁsh oﬀal, gazpacho, N E H N and fun-shaped children’s items. The ﬁve items with the highest points as perennial trends next year were fried chicken, Italian cuisine, N N W frying, barbeque, and Eggs Benedict. N
H The ﬁve items that gained most in trendiness since last year in the annual survey were nose-to-tail/root-to-stalk cooking, pickling, ramen, dark greens, and Southeast Asian cuisine. The ﬁve items with the largest drop in “hot trend” rating were Greek yogurt, sweet potato fries, E new cuts of meat, grass-fed beef, and organic coﬀee.
Compared with ﬁve years ago, items that have remained top 20 food trends include locally grown produce, healthful kids’ meals, gluten-free G cuisine, sustainable seafood, and health/nutrition. Items that dropped substantially down the list from the top 20 food trends in 2009 include N gelato, micro-greens, ﬂatbreads, tapas/meze/dim sum, and dessert ﬂights. Also included in the What’s Hot in 2014 survey were questions about other trends. Nearly six out of 10 (59 percent) of the chefs said they always make eﬀorts to adjust H dishes and recipes to be more healthful, while one-third (33 percent) said they cook with nutrition in mind, but that not all recipes are easily adjusted. When it comes to technology trends, the chefs ranked menus on tablet computers as the top trend, followed by smartphone apps for consumers (ordering, reservations, daily deals, etc.), smartphone apps for chefs (recipes, table management, POS tracking, etc.), mobile payment and social media marketing. WHAT’S ethnic flour
LOCALLY GROWN PRODUCE sustainable seafood
environmental sustainability non-wheat noodles/pasta FRUIT/VEGETABLE CHILDREN'S SIDE ITEMS
SIMPLICITY/BACK TO BASICS hybrid desserts
whole grain items in kids' meals
non-wheat noodles/pasta FRUIT/VEGETABLE CHILDREN'S SIDE ITEMS
simplicity/back to basics
HEALTHFUL KIDS' MEALS unusual/uncommon herbs locally grown produce FARM/ESTATE BRANDED
LOCALLY SOURCED MEATS nutrition AND SEAFOOD gluten-free cuisine specialty nutrition
TOP TRENDS by category APPETIZERS 1. House-cured meats/ charcuterie
5. Half-portions/smaller portions for a smaller prize or a smaller price
2. Vegetarian appetizers
3. Ethnic/street food-inspired appetizers (e.g. tempura, taquitos, kabobs)
1. Hybrid desserts (e.g. cronut, townie, ice cream cupcake)
4. Ethnic dips (e.g. hummus, tabbouleh, baba ganoush, tzatziki)
3. House-made/artisan ice cream
5. Amuse-bouche/bitesize hors d’oeuvre
STARCHES/SIDE ITEMS 1. Non-wheat noodles/ pasta (e.g. quinoa, rice, buckwheat) 2. Quinoa 3. Black/forbidden rice
MAIN DISHES/ CENTER OF THE PLATE
4. Ethnic-inspired children’s dishes 5. Oven-baked items in kids’ meals (e.g. baked chicken fingers, oven-baked fries)
4. Bite-size/mini-desserts 5. Deconstructed classic desserts
BREAKFAST/BRUNCH 1. Ethnic-inspired breakfast items (e.g. Asian-flavored syrups, Chorizo scrambled eggs, coconut milk pancakes) 2. Traditional ethnic breakfast items (e.g. huevos rancheros, shakshuka, ashta) 3. Fresh fruit breakfast items
PRODUCE 1. Locally grown produce 2. Unusual/uncommon herbs (e.g. chervil, lovage, lemon balm, papalo)
Locally sourced meats and seafood
Healthful kids’ meals Gluten-free cuisine
Hyper-local sourcing (e.g. restaurant gardens)
Non-wheat noodles/pasta (e.g. quinoa, rice, buckwheat)
10. Farm/estate branded items
5. Heirloom apples
Nose-to-tail/root-to-stalk cooking (e.g. reduce food waste by using entire animal/ plant)
12. Whole grain items in kids’ meals
1. Peruvian cuisine
2. Korean cuisine
14. New cuts of meat (e.g. Denver steak, pork flat iron, tri-tip)
4. Egg white omelets/ sandwiches 5. Yogurt parfait/Greek yogurt parfait
4. Regional ethnic cuisine
5. Ethnic fusion cuisine Malaysian)
1. Healthful kids’ meals
Locally grown produce Environmental sustainability
ETHNIC CUISINES AND FLAVORS
2. Sustainable seafood
2. Whole grain items in kids’ meals
4. Organic produce
1. Locally sourced meats and seafood
4. Non-traditional fish (e.g. branzino, Arctic char, barramundi)
Top 20 TRENDS
3. Dark greens (e.g. kale, mustard greens, collards)
3. Southeast Asian cuisine (e.g. Thai, Vietnamese, Malaysian)
3. New cuts of meat (e.g. Denver steak, pork flat iron, tri-tip)
The National Restaurant Association surveyed professional chefs, members of the American Culinary Federation, on which food, cuisines, beverages and culinary themes will be hot trends on restaurant menus in 2014. The What’s Hot in 2014 survey was conducted in the fall of 2013 among nearly 1,300 chefs. See p. 14 for more information about the methodology.
2. Savory desserts
4. Red rice 5. Pickled vegetables
3. Fruit/vegetable children’s side items
15. Ancient grains (e.g. kamut, spelt, amaranth) 16. Ethnic-inspired breakfast items (e.g. Asian-flavored syrups, Chorizo scrambled eggs, coconut milk pancakes) 17.
Grazing (e.g. small-plate sharing/snacking instead of traditional meals)
18. Non-traditional fish (e.g. branzino, Arctic char, barramundi) 19. Fruit/vegetable children’s side items 20. Half-portions/smaller portions for a smaller price
Get the full survey results at Restaurant.org/FoodTrends or ask your Sysco Marketing Associate for a printed edition
www.technomic.com Nov. 13, 2013
10 Trends for 2014 Technomic, the nation's leading foodservice research and consulting ﬁrm, brings together the best judgments of its consultants and editors to peer ahead into 2014, identifying trends that may signiﬁcantly impact the restaurant industry. These expert insights are based on site visits evaluating the restaurant scene in cities across the country as well as interviews and surveys of operators, chefs and consumers, backed up by qualitative data from its extensive Digital Resource Library and quantitative data from its vast MenuMonitor database.
6. Day for night: Consumers are less likely to eat according to a three-square-meals schedule; they nosh, skip meals, eat breakfast for dinner and vice versa. More restaurants are introducing innovative breakfast items—like chicken, turkey or steak breakfast sandwiches or super-spicy wraps with chipotle or Sriracha—often available all day. And while breakfast-and-lunch-only concepts are building a niche, other operators are promoting late-night breakfast menus, often in conjunction with 24-hour drive-thru service.
Some of these developments reﬂect larger societal trends while others point to speciﬁc, emerging food preferences that may or may not take hold in restaurants across the U.S.
7. Every daypart is a snack daypart: As the snacking lifestyle goes mainstream, diners are paradoxically less interested in snack menus per se. Millennials see dollar and dollar-plus menus as the snack menu. LSRs are paying more attention to snack sized handhelds and car friendly packaging; they're also stepping up their game with graband-go or market-style oﬀerings. As full service restaurant customers move away from meat-and-potatoes meals, operators are catering to the snacking and sharing ethos with pairings, trios and ﬂights from all parts of the menu—from soup trios to beer samplers to retro popsicle ﬂight desserts.
1. Convince me it's real: Consumers want assurances that what they're eating is real—in every sense of the word. Today's menus describe items far more thoroughly, listing not only the ingredients but also where they came from and how they were prepared. Local sourcing is more important than ever, but beyond that is the idea of being true to place; if the restaurant positions itself as authentically Italian, for instance, it must use ingredients sourced from Italy and/or prepared using authentic Italian methods. 2. Pushing the parameters of proteins: Rising commodity costs for beef mean (of course) that chicken will be big again in 2014. However, the latest protein star is pork—appearing in regional barbecue items, in Hispanic and other ethnic fare, in charcuterie and as pulled-pork sandwiches. Also getting time in the spotlight are lamb and game meats, from duck to bison. Beyond meat, look for creative center-of-the-plate egg dishes as well as vegetarian alternatives, from mushrooms to beans to soy-based products like Gardein and Chipotle's Sofritas. 3. Return of the carbs: Starches are staging a comeback—from ramen to buckwheat noodles to pasta made with unusual ingredients. Rice bowls (and jasmine rice, basmati rice, brown rice) will be big, in part because of continued fascination with Asian fare and in part because of an association with healthfulness. Look for more in the way of ﬂatbreads, wraps and all kinds of artisan breads, including healthy whole-grain varieties. Waﬄes as a base or side make traditional savory items like chicken seem edgy. 4. Creamy, cheesy, high-fat goodness: The demand for healthier eating is real, but so is the backlash. We'll see even more cheese melts, pasta with creamy sauces, fried appetizers and sides, and oddities like doughnut-based sandwiches. Don't take super-indulgent items too seriously, though; outrageous LTOs like Wendy's nine-patty burger are crafted more for social-media buzz than for eating. 5. Pucker up: Forays into less-familiar ethnic cuisines, from Korean to Scandinavian, are partly responsible for growing interest in pickled, fermented and sour foods. Korean kimchi as well as pickled onion, jalapeño, ginger, radish and more are showing up everywhere from ethnic eateries to burger joints. On the beverage menu, the trend is seen in sour cocktails as well as new ﬂavor combinations with sour notes—a reaction to last year's candy-sweet drinks.
8. On tap: Tap technology is revolutionizing the beverage world: barrel-stored cold-brewed coﬀee that can be sent through repurposed beer taps, facilitating a new kind of coﬀee bar; soda-water taps that allow chefs to create their own fruity soft drinks; wine-on-tap tasting stations in high-end supermarkets; keg-wine bar concepts and retroﬁts; RFID-card-controlled self-serve beer-tap walls at high-tech pubs. 9. For fast service, bring your own device: The fast-casual service model has hit a hiccup: customers specifying every ingredient in their burrito or sandwich make for a slow service line. Operators in every segment are ﬁnding new ways to use technology for faster, more accurate ordering. iPad orders placed tableside will be a point of diﬀerentiation for a few tech leaders, but we'll primarily see a bring-your-own-device system of advance and inside-the-restaurant ordering—as well as more customer feedback and interactive conversations. In the back of the house, increased use of iPad communication will make new menu items easier to roll out. 10. Everything is political: Deliberately or inadvertently, restaurant operators got caught up in political controversy as never before in 2013. Some suﬀered customer backlash after expressing views related to Obamacare, "family values" or other topics, but others saw increased traﬃc. Consumers are increasingly aware that the personal is political – that their choices and those of the restaurants they patronize regarding food, treatment of employees and suppliers, sustainability and the environment have real consequences. Consciously or unconsciously, they will gravitate to concepts that share their worldview, and some restaurants will promote this cultural identiﬁcation. Technomic provides clients with the facts, insights and consulting support they need to enhance their business strategies, decisions and results. Its services include numerous publications and digital products, as well as proprietary studies and ongoing research on all aspects of the food industry.
thefoodchannel.com November 26, 2013
1. The Midwestern Food Movement—This is all about farm fresh and local taken to the next level, using the types of food readily available in the Midwest. Expect to see more Midwestern style cooking in this true food movement, as more chefs discover and put their own twists on some traditional foods that Midwesterners have kept secret for all these years. In fact, chefs are beginning to focus on the ingredients available in the Midwest and doing interesting things with root vegetables, steaks and more.
2. Distracted Dining—Restaurants are beginning to put menu items into forms that accommodate the cell phone obsessed—so you can eat with one hand, while the other holds the phone. Sandwiches, wraps, small bites are all sticking to the menu and growing because they don’t require two-ﬁsted dining. These restaurants have given up the ﬁght to have people concentrate on their food (or on their companion) and are bowing to the pressure to make it more convenient to eat and not run. On the other hand, some restaurants are creating “no cell phone" zones. But to accommodate the masses, restaurants will likely cater more to the multi-tasking.
3. Low Tea—Those who have found more frequent small meals suit them better than three heavy meals a day have added afternoon tea for a quick pick-up meal, called "low tea." Low tea is a light meal or snack, usually served around 4 p.m., and often shared with guests. This “extra" meal is considered a follow-up to brunch by some, since teatime recipes are often downsized brunch concepts.
4. Bread Rises to the Top—As we look at the overarching trend, it’s about the ﬂavor experience of bread and how it’s moving more to the center of the plate. Expect breads in more ﬂavors, more forms, and dipped in more than just egg batter in the future. Some of this is led by a return to home baked bread, but it goes beyond that to bread with beneﬁts (ﬂaxseed, anyone?), salted bread, ﬂavored breads and bread as the main course. Instead of being a carrier, bread is now surrounding itself with a variety of proteins and ﬂavors. Bread salad, breaded meatballs and meatloaf, bread pudding, muﬃn cups, ﬂatbread pizzas, stuﬃng casseroles—all of these are making us rethink how bread impacts a meal.
5. Investing in Food—The ﬁnancial community has begun to take notice, with restaurant investments becoming hot property and restaurant stocks soaring. The overarching trend here goes beyond investing and is more about the way the food world has begun building trust—those in the food business take it seriously. After all, one attack of food poisoning can hurt a restaurant’s image irretrievably. Further, great restaurateurs are ﬁnding ways to entertain, without having to give up their restaurant in the process—they are more believable because they continue to invest in the passion that made them popular in the ﬁrst place. Consumers have found “brand sanctuary" and are placing their trust in something they understand.
6. Small Scale Molecular Gastronomy—Both brining and pickling create chemical changes in the food, which can bring about new ﬂavors. While turkey brining has picked up interest over the last few years, pickling is gaining momentum, too. And it’s not just cucumbers — it’s pickled fruit, pickled onions, shrimp and the full range of pickled vegetables. Glazing has picked up steam, too—just another example of the desire to change up food and give it a diﬀerent ﬂavor, texture, or even color.
7. Ethnic Inspired—Indian cuisine is under the trends scope—but this is not meant to designate ethnic Indian food as much as it is a call out of the ﬂavors. Think curry, coconut, ginger, garlic and more. The ﬂavor proﬁles of India are becoming more popular, which perhaps is part of the globalization of food. It’s not really a homogenized melting pot, although these foods are ﬁnding some Americanized forms. We expect to see more global ﬂavors, forms, and more and more “melting pot" foods, but foods that retain the authentic ﬂavors and forms of a global society. Start with India, and see where it goes.
8. Personal Shopping—Whether it’s app-enabled or not, there's an increase in having someone else do the shopping. Local grocery stores oﬀer apps to help select items, then they pull them oﬀ the shelves, bag them up, and deliver them. Consumers can shop online and have fresh food delivered overnight. For some, personal shopping is becoming a necessity. As the population ages, more people require assistance, meaning the stores will begin to accommodate it on a more universal level. People want delivery in urban areas of more than pizza—they want meals, they want groceries, and they feel entitled to customization, just like they see in urban cities. And they are willing to pay the price.
9. Hybridization of Food—Enter a new mashup—what Food Channel calls the Hybridization of Food, enhancing protein with vegetables. Mushrooms in the meat, for example. FLIP Burger Boutique in Atlanta has gone so far as to call it “earth and turf."
10. Craft Everything—The packaging level is going to move “craft" beyond small batch production into something bigger. Expect to see the return of beer in cans, for example. While the traditional thinking has been that you can’t “do craft" in anything but bottles, it beneﬁts the brewer’s bottom line and so far no one is crying out about taste diﬀerences. More interesting packaging is on the horizon, along with more in the way of beer pairings.
www.nrn.com Oct. 1, 2013 by Bret Thorn
What’s hot, what’s next on restaurant menus Avocado is the ingredient of the year, food trend expert Nancy Kruse declared in her annual State of the Plate address at MUFSO. Kruse said the fruit, which is appearing in everything from the latest version of Chick-ﬁl-A’s Grilled Chicken Cool Wrap to desserts such as the Avocado PopSorbetto at Popbar, “plays well with other ingredients” because of its mild ﬂavor and creamy texture. Additionally, she said, its green color suggests freshness — an essential cue in dining — and probably makes consumers feel good about themselves for eating it. For guests looking for food that’s better for them, restaurants are oﬀering “food with beneﬁts,” such as the avocado, which has vitamins and heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, she said. Kruse noted the shift from the “subtraction model” of the past, when food was touted for having salt, fat and sugar removed from it. Now, the “addition” model touts the addition of added fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Even cruciferous vegetables — those members of the cabbage family including Brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliﬂower, kale and Swiss chard — are showing up on menus in items such as Mellow Mushroom’s Chicken Curry Pops with Sriracha Broccoli Slaw, and California Pizza Kitchen’s Brussels + Bacon Pizza. Kruse observed that cruciferous and other vegetables also were appearing with more regularity on breakfast menus and pointed to First Watch, which has added a broccoli and turkey frittata to its oﬀerings. Protein, too, is an important star on menus these days, she observed, noting that, of the three macronutrient types in the human diet — carbohydrates, fats and protein — protein was the only one that hadn’t been demonized. Now it’s being highlighted in “superfood” ingredients such as Greek yogurt and quinoa, she said.
Cruciferous vegetables, such as the Brussels sprouts featured on California Pizza Kitchen's Brussels + Bacon Pizza, are popping up on restaurant menus.
She said some of those better-for-you items are now targeting men, such as the Power Protein Menu currently in test at Taco Bell, which features items with 20 or more grans of protein and fewer than 450 calories. Whole grains also are appearing on more menus, especially in breads, where they’re replacing specialized items such as ciabatta and focaccia. High-protein quinoa is a breakout in the “ancient grain” category, Kruse said, noting that those items appealed to the roughly one third of Americans who said they were trying to cut down on or eliminate gluten, according to NPD. However, she noted, “My strong sense is we are at the top and starting to downslope, noting that those chains who could add [quinoa] to their menus have already done so.” She added that, similar to the Atkins Diet fad, most customers would likely come back to gluten soon. Kruse pointed to Sriracha sauce — now a ﬂavor gracing chain menus across the country — as one of thee currently “cool” ingredients. Another is the pretzel — a popular sandwich carrier and an element in increasingly popular sweet-and-salty desserts, such as Dairy Queen’s chocolate-covered pretzel Blizzard. The third cool ingredient is beer, which is being used in fondue dips, as a braising medium and in desserts, such as Red Robin’s Oktoberfest Beer Shake. Craft beer is also growing in popularity, she observed. In a subsequent session, David Henkes, executive director of Technomics’ Adult Beverage Insights Group, said craft beer now accounts for 15 percent of total beer sales in restaurants.
2014 Drink Trends in Focus Tracking the trends in adult beverage and really distilling them down to what will drive (or drag) the industry requires a unique blend of analytics, insights and instinct. Luckily at Technomic, our adult beverage team of experts possesses a wealth of all three, honed via more than 35 years of combined experience following and analyzing the business. Based on our ongoing research into spirits, wine and beer volume and sales, as well as our extensive consumer surveys and discussions with brand marketers, on-premise and retail operators and other drinks professionals, we have identiﬁed the trends that we foresee shaping the drinks business in 2014. 1. Sweet survives in spirits but makes room for spicy and herbal ﬂavors (and more). Dessert- and confectionary-ﬂavored vodkas abound, but they are joined by an increasing number of less-sugar-focused options. Ginger, cucumber, lemongrass and even tobacco show up in vodkas, and rums continue to run toward spiced varieties, while cinnamon shows up in numerous spirits and mixed drinks. Mango emerges as a hot cocktail ﬂavor, while honey and maple expand in whiskey drinks. 2. Cider stakes its claim: The presence of major beer suppliers in the cider market—including AB InBev, MillerCoors, Heineken and Boston Beer Company—further bolsters the category’s availability, visibility, back bar and retail shelf placement, and its appearance on bar and restaurant drink lists. Seasonal and specialty ciders add to the excitement. At the same time, smaller producers continue to grow, bringing unique oﬀerings to the mix. 3. Ultra-targeted marketing grows: Adult beverage suppliers and retailers in both the on- and oﬀ-premise segments seek to engage speciﬁc consumer groups. Look for spirits, wine and beer products as well as on-premise and retail concepts that are designed to appeal to particular demographic groups. On the hot list: Millennials, Hispanics and women, as well as groups deﬁned by active lifestyles or other attributes. 4. On-premise, more drinks on tap turn up. Wine, cocktails, craft beer and cider duke it out with traditional oﬀerings for tap handles at the bar, on tabletop tap systems and on sampling systems. Consumers embrace the notion that wine coming out of a keg or tap is often of equal quality to bottled product, and high-end producers move toward the quickly evolving keg wine packaging. Operators and suppliers collaborate to address the challenges of tap cocktails and of managing the rotation of seasonal craft beer and cider through category management.
blogs.technomic.com Dec. 3, 2013 by Donna Hood Crecca
5. Truly special specialty drinks stand out. Barrel-aged and bottled cocktails expand in high-end libation lounges, while communal cocktails, punches and tiki drinks bring something unique to the bar or table. Some on-premise operators move toward a “less is more” mentality, menuing not only low-calorie but also lower-alcohol drinks. 6. “Come together” is a theme for both products and categories. Hybrid products and drinks that mix categories abound: beer and spirit cocktails, alcohol milkshakes and products that combine categories (such as Malibu Red or Blue Moon Vintage Blonde). These blended oﬀerings aﬀord new taste experiences, inviting experimentation and innovation both at home and in restaurants and bars. 7. Independents innovate and grow. Nimble and motivated, independent retail and on-premise operators take the lead on many trends to diﬀerentiate, connect with consumers, ramp up service elements and realize sales growth, ultimately outpacing chains. At the same time, many independent restaurant and bar operators feel comfortable raising drink prices. 8. The new-product parade continues. The steady stream of new spirits, wine and beer products, including seasonal, limited-time and specialty items, prompts on-premise operators to move toward category-management initiatives to optimize product placement and capitalize on consumers’ interest in trying new products. 9. Next-level craft beer rises. A double-digit growth rate continues for craft beer but slows as consumers and operators seek clarity in deﬁning the category as well as relief from the often overwhelming number of new brewers, brands and styles. Also, craft distilling continues to expand, delivering small-batch spirits to consumers eager for unique, artisan and “authentic” libations. 10. Hotel and high-end nightclub drink sales ramp up. Hotel bars and restaurants realize strong adult beverage program growth as they continue to invest and innovate, while high-energy, high-end nightclubs outperform the industry overall on drink sales.
Top Trends for 2014 http://www.foodingredientsglobal.com Dec. 2013
As 2013 draws to a close, thoughts turn to what 2014 might hold. Market research companies look into their crystal balls to make predictions for the coming year. Within the Strategic Insight team here at Leatherhead Food Research, we have also been wondering what 2014 has in store for the food and drink industry. Here are some of the issues which we expect to be preoccupying the time and energies of our members and clients next year.
1. The skeptical consumer 2013 has seen consumer trust in the food and drink industry take rather a battering with scandals such as “Horsegate”. What consumers hated most was not so much the fact that they were eating horse per se, but more the fact that they perceived companies had tried to pull the wool over their eyes. While sales of beef may have returned to pre-Horsegate levels, consumer trust has undoubtedly been dented. We now see a more skeptical and wary consumer emerging. Companies will have to battle hard to regain trust.
2. Claims that count One way companies can rebuild consumer trust is by looking at their products holistically and carefully considering the claims they are making about those products. With hyper-sensitive consumers who are concerned about the number of processes which they believe their food is subjected to, and with a hungry press who are waiting for the next big food scandal, claims need to be spot on and actually deliver on their promises. Consumers are getting wise to ubiquitous claims like ‘natural’ which promise a lot without clearly saying what the product is actually delivering. It seems regulatory and marketing teams might need to get a whole lot closer in 2014 and onwards.
3. The growing focus on the supply chain The traceability and sustainability criteria of the ingredients which go into companies’ products are becoming ever more important; companies are conscious of the need to understand the operations of their entire supply chain in order to mitigate any risks before they occur and to give them evidence for the good news stories about their products.
Emma Gubisch Strategic Insight Manager The case for supply chain ethics is becoming clearer too. Trade is changing. Food companies can no longer assume they can pay the right price and get the commodity they want. With fears around the supply of key commodities like cocoa, not only is the reality beginning to sink in that there might not be an endless supply of commodities, but the growth of food companies in the southern hemisphere means there are a greater number of companies demanding scarcer commodities. Small scale producers are ﬁnding they now have options and companies could ﬁnd themselves being cut out of deals. Companies are beginning to see real beneﬁts in nurturing and protecting their supply chains. It seems there may be an alignment between business and sustainability objectives after all.
4. Health and wellness rather than ‘diet’ With consumers’ personal memories of failed weight loss attempts and with the media delving into the science behind weight loss, ‘diet’ is becoming a dirty word. Rather than compartmentalising ‘healthy eating’ to a particular part of their lives, consumers are looking for more balanced approaches to weight loss and weight management. Companies are responding by moving from diet products which sit in a single aisle in the supermarket to more mainstream ‘healthy products’ which can become a more integral part of people’s lives. They are seeking to reposition ‘healthy’ in a more positive framework, as something to be enjoyed rather than dreaded.
5. Natural sugar alternatives The pressures for the industry to address growing obesity levels means sweeteners remain a key area for innovation. Plant-derived sweeteners, such as stevia, that can be marketed on a more natural platform are expected to provide the main impetus for growth in the sweetener market in the coming years. As manufacturers work to create the right taste proﬁle for stevia and wait for other plant-derived sweeteners, such as monk fruit, to attain regulatory clearance, the artiﬁcial sweetener market still oﬀers growth opportunities, however - in particular, the sucralose and acesulfame-K markets.
Top 4 Flavor Trends for 2014 www.foodproductdesign.com November 15, 2013 Comax Flavors deems 2014 the year "when anything goes" when it comes to ﬂavors, predicting trending ﬂavors to fall into one of four distinct categories—"Fresh Focused," "Sultry Sweets," "Some Like It Hot" and "Reasons to Cheer." The ﬂavor trends were categorized based on information gathered from food-industry experts in Comax's Culinary Trend Exchange. “Flavors have no boundaries," said Catherine Armstrong, VP, corporate communications, Comax Flavors. “The world’s most talented chefs and mixologists are experimenting with the geography of ﬂavor, whipping up a storm of creativity through their explorations." Fresh Focused ﬂavors add a fresh, healthy halo to snack foods, beverages, juices, bars and dips. Flavors include: Coconut Lime, Lemon Garlic Pepper, Carrot Watermelon and Pineapple Cucumber.
Sultry Sweets combine two or more sweet and/or savory ﬂavors into one ﬂavor-saturated treat. Flavors include: Cola Cappuccino Nut, Marshmallow Macadamia Crunch, Ginger Sesame Caramel and Maple Bourbon Banana. Some Like It Hot represents a pairing of ethnic and cultural ﬂavors to provide spicy ﬂavors, which have recently gained popularity among consumers, with sweet ﬂavors in applications such as chips, sweets, confections, dips, sauces, beers and beverages. Flavors include: Sriracha Chocolate, Black Pepper Caramel, Honey Wasabi and Habanero Maple. Reasons to Cheer represents innovative cocktail creations. Flavors include: Shiraz Truﬄe, Beaujolais Citrus Punch, Mojito Macaroon and Boozy Mint Cookie.
Hot Restaurant Menu Trends www.nrn.com Nov. 6, 2013 Article by Bret Thorn The coming year will be a year of blurred lines in the hospitality industry, with hotel lobbies doubling as living rooms, croissants doubling as doughnuts, and vegetables doubling as dessert ingredients, a hospitality consulting group predicts. “Blurred Lines” was the theme of the latest annual trend-prediction webinar given by Andrew Freeman, chief executive of San Francisco-based hospitality consulting ﬁrm Andrew Freeman & Co. After a quick rundown of the trends that are winding down, what’s currently trending and what we’re likely to see next year (examples below), Freeman outlined other food, beverage and restaurant trends the industry may see in 2014. For more details on the Freeman projections, see article on pages 10 and 11.
Ice Cream Sandwiches
Beer & Beer Cocktails
Tea & Tea Cocktails
Restaurant Trends to Watch www.restaurant-hospitality.com Oct. 31, 2013
Andrew Freeman is at it again. His San Francisco-based hospitality- and restaurant-consulting ﬁrm, AF&Co., just released its seventh annual list of trends that will shape the industry in the coming year. Titled “Blurred Lines – the dishes, drinks and digs that will be breaking down barriers in 2014,” the comprehensive report examines how traditional lines are being blurred to create connectivity, authenticity of experience and smooth integration across various platforms. “This year’s trends are about the experiential,” says Freeman, one of the industry’s top trend watchers. “As technology continues to infuse every aspect of our lives, clientele are looking for deeper personal connections as the barriers between what is private and public become increasingly blurred.” Without further ado, here are his calls for the top food, drink and restaurant trends heading into 2014.
86 the chicken: Gone are the days when there was always a chicken dish on the menu for picky eaters. Restaurants are playing to more adventurous eaters and diners’ palates have risen to the challenge. At Empire State South in Atlanta, you’ll ﬁnd catﬁsh, pork belly and even goat on the menu, but not a chicken dish in sight. Cobb karma: Newfangled Cobbs are knocking Caesar oﬀ its pedestal as the king of salads. The just-opened Park Bistro & Bar in Lafayette, CA jazzes up their Chop-Chop Cobb Salad with crispy avocado, while The Mix-Up at Phoenix’s The Royal Palms spices up the classic Cobb with jerk chicken and Scotch bonnet peppers. Haute homey: Chefs are going back to childhood and having fun with familiar favorites. Highbrow versions of classic comfort foods are popping up all over menus, from appetizers to dessert.
Not your grandpappy’s BBQ: Chefs are taking classic barbecue techniques to new heights by showcasing regional nuance and bold ﬂavors. BBQ culture is moving beyond roadside shacks and backyard smokers. Gettin’ nutty with it: It doesn’t just come from a cow. Pastry chefs, baristas and bartenders are playing around with nut milks. The pecan-bourbon bread pudding at Sazerac in Seattle gets its nutty ﬂavor from house-made pecan milk. Everything under the sea: It’s our most precious resource and chefs are using it wisely and innovatively. From sea beans to ﬁsh cheeks, they’re exploring the bounty of the ocean and how to keep it a lasting resource. Kitchen comes tableside: Old-school service meets new school standards as restaurants are breaking down the barriers between the kitchen and the diner with an updated return to tableside preparations.
Mutant morsels: Chefs all over the country have gone mad scientist, creating hybrid versions of longtime crowd pleasers. By now everyone has heard of the cronut (part donut, part croissant) and its creator, Dominique Ansel, is already onto his next hybrid creation: the Magic Souﬄé. We all scream for ice cream sandwiches: Move over cupcakes and donuts, there’s a new treat in town: the ice cream sandwich. Coolhaus Ice Cream Truck in Los Angeles, New York, Miami and Austin takes this trend mobile and has creative cookie ﬂavors like potato chip and butterscotch. When the chips are down: Up the ante on chips ‘n dip by subbing in alternatives to the traditional fried spud, tortilla chip or crostini. Beef tendon crisps are the perfect vehicle for Chef Robin Song’s beef tartare at Hi Lo in San Francisco, CA. Let’s get oiled up: For cooking and ﬁnishing, chefs are going beyond olive oil. The ﬂavors of avocado, hazelnut and benne seed oils elevate dishes to new levels. Even mixologists are getting into the action with oil-enhanced cocktails. The oldest form of cooking in the world: Everything old is new again. Going beyond pickling, chefs are fermenting just about everything these days. At Perbacco in San Francisco, chef Staﬀan Terje takes a page from the ancient cookbook ‘Apicius’ by experimenting with the fermented ﬁsh sauce known as garum, using it to braise meats and give dishes a deeper ﬂavor. Ahh…veg out! It’s easier than ever to get your veggies: these traditional sidekicks are ﬁnding their way into cocktails, taking the place of meat in traditional dishes and adding an edge to desserts.
Bollito Misto is carved tableside at Poggio Trattoria in Sausalito, CA, courtesy of this custom outﬁtted cart.
Niche ethnic: Forget about your run of the mill Chinese or Mexican spots, chefs are highlighting the lesser-known culinary traditions of countries like Macau and speciﬁc regional cuisines like Northern Thai. Chefs are also exploring more exotic spices and ﬂavors like Calabrian peppers, Gochugaru ﬂakes and Guajillo and Achiote. Split personalities: Whether it’s a casual café by day that transforms into ﬁne dining by night or a restaurant that shares its space with a retail shop, restaurant real estate is doing double duty. The Pass and Provisions are two unique restaurants under one roof, one ﬁne dining, the other casual, led by the same chef duo in Houston. Who doesn’t love a classic comeback? Iconic favorites will be making a comeback in 2014, with the reopening of old standards under new management. Fresh facelifts prove everything old is new again. Later this year, New York’s celebrated Tavern on the Green will reopen as a smaller, 250-table restaurant. It’s a movie; it’s a painting; no, it’s live art! Take artwork digital by using projection for still and moving pieces—it’s easy to keep things changing without breaking the bank. Oak in Dallas ﬁttingly projects an image of an oak tree on their wall with a digital piece by local artist Robert Myers. Beyond the tipping point: Are restaurants, servers and diners ready for an update to our tipping culture? This hot topic has the industry buzzing and we certainly haven’t heard the last of it. Look for a move toward pooled tips and service charges. The year of the brasserie: Diners are clamoring for the casual sophistication of the brasserie. Whether you crave steak frites or just a see-and-be-seen atmosphere, this style of restaurant appeals to the Francophile in all of us and will continue to grow. Gilded chopsticks: With upscale dining rooms and innovative, handcrafted menus, Asian food isn’t just for takeout anymore. Raise the bar, lower the lounge: When real estate is at a premium, make the most of your space by going vertical. Restaurants are getting a height advantage by using basement and second story bars to create more seating, a bigger dining room and a fatter bottom line. Don’t get drunk on an empty stomach: Chefs are getting into the bar business in a big way. We’re seeing a plethora of chefdriven bar concepts that oﬀer thoughtful bites to pair with complex cocktails and wine programs. Similarly, traditional bars and wineries are adding composed dishes to their repertoire to enhance the tasting experience and encourage patrons to linger.
Perk up, eat up: As small batch roasters go mainstream and the public’s interest in esoteric coﬀees brews, the food at your local coﬀee shop gets fancier too. Chef coat goes lab coat: Restaurants are getting serious about the science behind cooking. The new ﬂavors, techniques and textures coming out of culinary laboratories are the future of food. Chicago’s Grant Achatz incubates new dishes for his world-famous Alinea in a custom outﬁtted culinary laboratory. Ice, ice baby: Ice isn’t just for chilling: Bars and restaurants are infusing their cubes with herbs and other ingredients to enhance the ﬂavors or their cocktails. Worth their weight: No need to commit to just one varietal or region— pay by the ounce and sample as many wines as you can handle. Claudine in San Francisco makes the most of trendy wines on tap by charging just $1 per ounce during happy hour. Artisan, not just for ales: The artisanal movement hits spirits, highlighting local, small-batch spirit makers is this year’s farmer call-out. Tippler nibblers: Bite into your booze with cocktails that take a solid— and fun—form. In Mountain View, CA, Steins Beer Garden & Restaurant’s Rogue Chocolate Stout Real Beer Float with Graham Cracker Squares is proof that soda fountain cocktails aren’t going anywhere. Loca-pour: No longer the sole realm of Napa, more and more states are contributing to the growing American wine movement. Restaurants that have long embraced a locavore ethos are revising their wine lists to match. Brooklyn’s Seersucker has an all-American wine list, with a majority of bottles from New York’s North Fork and Finger Lakes regions. Flights of fancy: Oﬀer up ﬂights of unusual and small batch spirits, maybe even pairing them with food, and let a night at the bar become educational. ¡Mas vino, por favor! ¡Ay ay ay! Wines from the Iberian Peninsula are surpassing classic French varietals on restaurant menus across the country, spicing up wine lists with Spanish and Portuguese ﬂair. Carmello’s in Manassas, VA showcases over 100 Portuguese wines from such regions as Alentejo, Douro, Doa, Estremadura, and Vinho Verde. Tea time: Tea is topping oﬀ cocktails and making a big splash whether served hot or cold. Charleston’s soon-to-open brewery Edmund’s Oast is brewing beers they call “Lords Proprietors” made with tea from Charleston Tea Plantation.
(Left to Right) At Haute Dish in Minneapolis, chef Landon Schoenefeld creates modern versions of Midwestern classics. Hi Lo elevates Northern California barbecue by infusing local, seasonal ingredients with the power of wood, smoke and ﬁre. Keizo Shimamoto’s Ramen Burger, with “buns” crafted from griddled ramen, has caused a sensation and inspired knockoﬀs.
McCormick Flavor Forecast 2014 See www.mccormick.com/ﬂavor-forecast for full recipes Marking our 125th year as a ﬂavor innovator, McCormick is embarking upon a year-long journey that celebrates the power of ﬂavor. At the heart of this celebration is our belief that the ways we experience and enjoy ﬂavor connect people and cultures around the world. This anniversary edition of our signature Flavor Forecast, ﬁrst created in 2000, identiﬁes the insights and ingredients on the rise that will drive the future of ﬂavor. Created by a global team of experts at McCormick—including chefs, culinary professionals, trend trackers and food technologists—it uncovers stories of ﬂavor, cuisines and techniques inspiring creative and delicious innovations for years to come. 5 Flavor Insights These insights reﬂect emerging trends and key cultural inﬂuences that are shaping the tastes of tomorrow. Together, they tell an exciting story about how people everywhere are coming together for more diverse, colorful and ﬂavorful meals than ever before.
Chilies Obsession - THE WORLD IS CRAVING HEAT IN A BIG WAY Beyond just discovering new chile varieties, this obsession has extended into using techniques like grilling, smoking, pickling, fermenting and candying to tease out their ﬂavor potential.
Recipes on our website: • Sichuan Cashew Sauce • Spicy Papaya & Pineapple Salsa • Pepita & Chile Salsa
• Three-Chile Mole Fondue • Chorizo Chile Poppers
Modern Masala - INDIAN FOOD IS FINALLY HAVING ITS GLOBAL MOMENT Already familiar with basic curries, people around the world are taking their appreciation for this richly-spiced cuisine to the next level, exploring more ﬂavors in new contexts, from food trucks to ﬁne dining.
Recipes on our website: • Grilled Shrimp Tandoori Salad with Mango Dressing • Grilled Paneer Cheese with Mango Tomato Chutney & Curry Vinaigrette 12
• “Street Truck Style” Chicken Jalfrezi Naan Wrap • Kashmiri Masala Spice Blend
Clever Compact Cooking BIG FLAVOR CAN COME FROM SMALL SPACES As the movement toward more eﬃcient compact kitchens grows, inventive urban dwellers are discovering creative, cross-functional ways to prepare ﬂavorful meals making the most of what’s available.
Recipes on our website: • Vegetable Pho with Tea Broth • Easy Lemon Tea-Infused Custard with Candied Apricots • Cajun Spiced Chicken Risotto
Mexican World Tour MEXICAN FLAVORS ARE ON THE MOVE From a growing taste for regional Mexican fare in North America to early exploration in China, cultures across the world are embracing authentic elements of this bright, bold and casual cuisine.
Recipes on our website: • Shrimp and Queso Fresco Empanadas with Charred Tomatillo Sauce • Tomatillo Maria • Mexican Slow-Roasted Pork (Cochinita Pibil) • Yucatan Red Recado • Salmon Tostada with Chamoy and Charred Corn Relish • Chamoy Sauce • Chamoy Mango Sunrise
Charmed by Brazil THE WORLD WILL SHINE ITS SPOTLIGHT ON BRAZIL The world is about to shine its spotlight on Brazil, illuminating the vibrant ﬂavors and traditions of a dynamic melting pot culture that includes European, African, Asian and native Amazonian inﬂuences. Brazilian tastes are poised to emerge as a powerful inﬂuence in cooking around the globe.
Recipes on our website: • Bahian Spiced Chicken & Beans with Yuca Mash • Bahian Seasoning Blend • Pepita & Chile Salsa • Brazilian Guava Cocktail
5 Restaurant Trends You Can’t Ignore www.restaurant-hospitality.com by Eric Stoessel Dec. 9, 2013 It’s that time of year. Every chef, restaurateur, publicist and publication is announcing their can’t-miss trend picks for the New Year. Predicting the future is almost impossible, but that’s not stopping us from making our own guesses—wait, carefully researched, reported and analyzed theories, we mean.
A prime example is the ﬂexitarian approach from Nicole Pederson, dubbed the “vegetable magician” by Chicago Reader, at Found Kitchen and Social House in Evanston, IL. Her hearty vegetable plates (roasted Brussels sprouts and squash with harissa, cilantro and pepita, for example) can be shared or enjoyed as an entrée.
We started by asking the one chef we thought might actually have an idea. We called Didier Elena, the chef who’s spent 25 years with Alain Ducasse and Paul Bocuse, who’s earned eight Michelin stars, worked in some of the world’s top restaurants and is now heading Aspen’s Chefs Club featuring some of this country’s best new chefs.
Brandt Evans, owner of Pura Vida in Cleveland and chef/partner at Blue Canyon Tavern in Twinsburg, OH, says chefs can take classic American comfort foods and turn them into vegetarian options like shepherd’s pie made with tofu or seitan and stuﬀed peppers made with couscous and mushrooms.
He told us if he knew the answer, he’d open that restaurant tomorrow. He’s not doing that, as far as we know. Undaunted, we queried some of the top chefs and publicists from across the country, gathered and studied everyone else’s list of predictions and thought back to our travels and tastings from the past year.
Meatless Mondays, a global movement that just celebrated its 10th anniversary in October, is more popular than ever. At Second Home Kitchen + Bar in Denver, chef Jason Brumm showcases a diﬀerent vegetable every Monday.
What we found, from burger joints to white-tablecloth dining rooms, was chefs looking to innovate and personalize their oﬀerings. Our list may not be full of wild and cutting-edge ideas; rather, we hope these ﬁve broad areas provide opportunities for every type of restaurant to enhance their menus and appeal to more customers in 2014.
1. Yes, Veggies Again Yes, vegetables were on everyone’s list last year, so this isn’t groundbreaking and probably beyond trendy, but we couldn’t ignore this conﬂuence of several smaller trends. This hit us while on the Pork Crawl in Nantucket, MA, an outing hosted by the Pork Board to show oﬀ amazing pork dishes (mission accomplished, by the way), when one of the featured chefs was overheard saying “vegetables are the new pork.” Calm down, pork is still pork, and bacon will always be bacon, but the point the chef was making, we think: Vegetables are becoming the latest and most aﬀordable canvas for creativity. They continue to move to the center of the plate as consumers’ taste for healthy and locally sourced products increases, while the price of most proteins continues to rise. It’s why veggies—the roots, stems and petals—can be found on every page of the menu, from cocktails to entrees to desserts. Tony Maws, the James Beard Award-winning chef of Craigie on Main in Boston, has featured White Asparagus Ice Cream with candied hyssop, anise hyssop sprinkles and a Dark Chocolate Marquis with beet and white chocolate swirl ice cream, pumpernickel crumb and beat coulis. (More on dessert, as a trend of its own, later.) Total menu incidence of vegetables has increased 11 percent over the past three years, according to data from Technomic, and we see that number growing even more.
Andrew Freeman & Co., a leading hospitality consultant and trend spotter, agreed that veggies are no longer just a sidekick, noting Michelin-starred restaurants like Atelier Crenn in San Francisco and Eleven Madison Park in New York are transforming carrots to take on a meaty texture and ﬂavor in preparations like jerky and tartare.
2. Make Room for Large Plates Small plates have been all the rage the past several years, but their big brother isn’t happy. Large plates are ﬁghting back for space on the table and winning at many restaurants across the country. The intent really is the same as with small plates. It’s all about sharing, and “making guests feel happy and at home,” says Mark Allen, executive chef and culinary director at Towne Stove and Spirits in Boston. He oﬀers a Whole Wood-Fire Grilled Red Snapper for two with garlic, broccolini, lemon conﬁt and olive oil for $64, and says on a good night he can sell as many as 10. “Once you sell one, then you really start selling them,” he says of the wow factor that comes when the impressive plate is delivered from the kitchen. Fatty ‘Cue, with locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn, oﬀers large-format dishes with an East/West theme. They feature one protein (pig, brisket or chicken) with sauces and garnishes from both sides of the world. Chef Roger Waysok of South Water Kitchen in Chicago oﬀers a Maple Leaf Farms Whole Smoked Duck For Two with baby bok choy and sweet potato puree. It’s been so popular he keeps including it on his menus, but tweaks the ﬂavors with diﬀerent seasonal ingredients. “The world of food is all about having fun now, and this brings the table together and is more interactive,” Towne’s Allen says, adding that it’s not just couples ordering dinners for two, but often large groups ordering multiple entrees to be shared.
Jason Brumm, chef at Second Home in Denver, stars a diﬀerent vegetable every Monday, like this Carrot Ginger Soup, Carrot and Green Curry Hummus & Carrot Arancini. Photo: Sage Restaurant Group
3. Preserving Freshness Seasonality, locally sourcing products and sustainability have all gone beyond trends to become a way of life, but canning, drying and preserving are the latest extensions. James Beard Award-nominated chef Paul Virant is a great example. His book, The Preservation Kitchen: The Craft of Making and Cooking with Pickles, Preserves and Aigre-doux, presents preserving techniques, recipes and menu pairing ideas, while his Chicago restaurants, Perennial Virant and Vie, showcase many of the ﬁnished products he writes about. Greg Baker, the James Beard Award-nominated chef from the Reﬁnery in Tampa, says canning and preserves enable chefs to use the same high quality and locally sourced products in the oﬀseason that they use during the growing season. Chef Michael Sindoni of the new CBD Provisions in Dallas spent the past summer before opening his restaurant canning peaches, cucumbers and peppers for use this winter. Not only are the jars and cans being used in the kitchen, Urban Farmer Steakhouse in Portland has a pickling pantry in the dining room with several tables where guests can sit. The visually stunning room isn’t just for show, as chef Matt Christianson and his staﬀ occasionally wander out to grab a jar for use in the kitchen.
4. Desserts Call it a Comeback
According to data from Food Genius, a tech ﬁrm tracking menu data, desserts are the smallest section of an independent restaurant’s menu. On average, desserts total six items, half the amount of appetizers on the same menu. “We’ve seen restaurants focus on building out their appetizers, increasing shareables and small plate items, and a growth in sides that are more complex and involved,” says Food Genius cofounder and v.p. Benjamin Stanley. “Dessert is the next logical area to innovate.”
5. Spicing It Up Instead of canning fresh peppers this summer, Matt Jennings, the chef and owner of Farmstead, Inc., in Providence, RI, made his own paprika. He’s now using it for his house-made chorizo, pastas, brines, rubs and other barbecue-based dishes. He’s not alone. More and more chefs are creating their own spices, sauces and tableside condiments. It’s yet another way to maximize product, create unique ﬂavors and provide artisanal-quality fare. Braden Wages, chef at Malai Kitchen in Dallas, makes his own Sriracha sauce (one of the hottest, literally and ﬁguratively, ﬂavors trending now) and has noticed other restaurants oﬀering a spin on “A-1” sauce and other condiments. The sauces and spices give chefs another way to add depth to their dishes. Tony Messina, sashimi chef at Boston’s Uni, goes beyond the standard table salt. His Green Tea Salt combines green tea with sea salt and blending it keeps the granules consistent, while his Hibiscus Salt adds a light ﬂoral seasoning, perfect for scallops.
Steve Chiappetti, chef of J. Rocco Italian Table & Bar in Chicago, has seen ﬁrsthand what recent Technomic data proves: Dessert consumption is on the rise. He says customers are ordering desserts approximately 25 percent of the time, way ahead of the 10 percent he was seeing the past few years as the economy teetered between recession and recovery. At times, he even wondered if it was worth employing a pastry chef.
Andrew Zimmerman, of Michelin-starred Sepia in Chicago, makes Spruce Salt by combining spruce tips (the young shoots of pine trees) and kosher salt for use in a dish featuring matsutake mushrooms. The mushrooms are poached and then served in a dashi broth, and topped with the salt—a ﬂavorful and fragrant ﬁnishing that provides a bitter and piney ﬂavor to the dish, complementing the earthy ﬂavors of the mushrooms.
“When I talk to customers there’s the sense of ‘I’m going to treat myself,’” he says, which mirrors Technomic’s report indicating 40 percent of consumers are having desserts after meals at least twice a week, up from 36 percent in 2010.
Jax Fish House & Oyster Bar, with several locations in Colorado, adds a unique spin to typical condiments with a smoked tomato barbecue sauce, espresso mustard and jalapeno honey syrup.
It gets better: “Consumers aren’t holding oﬀ on dessert until after dinner; instead, they’re reaching for easily accessible, handheld and portable treats at just about any time of day,” says Darren Tristano, e.v.p. of Technomic. “Operators need to look at ﬂavors, portion sizes and evolving needs to satisfy a broad range of consumers’ dessert expectations and preferences.” Perhaps that explains the recent wave of gourmet cupcakes and donuts, or even this year’s craze, the Cronut. What’s next? Andrew Freeman says it will be the ice cream sandwich, like the milk chocolate and malt version at Hard Water in San Francisco. Éclairs could be the answer—they’re hot in France now—or Cronut creator/pastry chef extraordinaire Dominique Ansel has moved on to the Magic Souﬄé, a brioche ﬁlled with chocolate souﬄé. Or maybe it will be candy bars, like the one at The Proprietors Bar & Table in Nantucket that features a chocolate candy bar tart with nougat ice cream.
“Operators are taking oﬀ-the-shelf sauces like ketchup, mayo, ranch dressing and mustard, and adding their own twists in ﬂavor,” says Food Genius’ Stanley of the emerging trend. “Much of this comes from growth in burgers and fries. A little tweaking can go a long way to create diﬀerentiation among others who are often serving many of the same items.” Chef Ernesto Uchimura of Plan Check Kitchen & Bar, a one-year-old modern American eatery in Los Angeles, has taken the most popular condiment and turned it upside down. He dehydrates homemade ketchup, transforming it into what he calls a leather (think fancy fruit rollup) and then puts it on his burgers. By removing the water, the leather reconstitutes with the juices from the burger and creates a beefy-tasting ketchup.
Chef Ethan McKee of Urbana in Washington DC, highlights vegetables on his small plates menu, which features eight veggie dishes vs. ﬁve meat dishes, including eggplant caponata.
Chef/owner Mark Grosz dazzles with desserts, like his Caramel-Chocolate Pots de Créme at Oceanique in Evanston, IL.
Photo: Scott Suchman
Photo: Cindy Kurman
Luxury Makes a Comeback
Nov. 4, 2013
To read more about all 12 Hottest Trends, download the entire report free at http://www.baumwhiteman.com/2014Forecast.pdf Baum+Whiteman, the leading food- and restaurant-consulting ﬁrm says luxury is the common thread among their 12 trends for 2014, from high-priced tasting menus to theatrical dining experiences to high-priced chicken treatments.
3. Goodbye food courts, hello food halls: Cookie-cutter mall food courts serving repetitive same-old chain food are on the downslide. Enter upscale “food halls” with “artisan” food staﬀed by local, name-brand restaurants. The best of these combine on-premises manufacturing, eating, takeaway and retail. In New York, see the 50,000 sq. ft. Eataly, and Chicago’s about to get one, too. 4. Bubbling, ﬁzzing beverage trends: With Starbucks committed to converting America to tea, look for others to amplify the attention. Teavana opened at a bar/cafe in Manhattan, and more will follow. Smart bartenders will look at Teavana and competitors’ multi-ﬂavored fruit and herbal blends as convenient bases for boozy cocktails and chefs may use them for basting.
On the menu at Tommy Bahama's New York ﬂagship: hamachi crudo, coﬀee-crusted ribeye with marrow butter and ﬁsh tacos with Asian slaw.
1. Restaurants in retail stores Thirty years ago, American department stores kicked out their restaurants (“too messy; unproductive”). Big mistake. Now retailers, large and tiny, are mainlining food and discovering the magic of “dwell time” to keep hungry customers on the premises longer so they’ll buy more. The restaurant in Tommy Bahama’s New York ﬂagship sells hamachi crudo, coﬀee-crusted ribeye with marrow butter, and ﬁsh tacos with Asian slaw. In Chicago, Saks is opening its ﬁrst Sophie’s global-American restaurant. At the other extreme, bicycle sales and rental shops are adding cafes, bars, juiceries and yogurt counters to build traﬃc. 2. Proliferation of tasting-only menus: A three-year bull-market is fueling a proliferation of tasting menus around the country. It’s great for restaurants’ economics, guaranteeing a speciﬁc average check along with pre-costed and highly controlled inventory. As ﬁve-percenters wallow in capital gains, no one cares about cost: $270 at French Laundry with a $175 supplement for white truﬄe pasta, $208 for the Grazing, Pecking, Rooting menu at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, $185 for the all-veg menu at Grace in Chicago, $248 at Saison in San Francisco to name just a few. Now there will be trickle-downs at less elite restaurants with tasting options to a la carte menus, costing the same as ﬁlling up your SUV.
The latest ﬁxation of artisan bartenders is making bespoke vermouths and stocking dozens of other branded and mostly obscure items. SodaStream contraptions have consumers experimenting with sodas at home, but restaurants are also crafting sodas using house-made fruit syrups and infusions. Inoculating beers with wild yeasts and aging them in wood, craft brewers are turning out fragrant but really sour beers. Juice bars are no longer for health nuts and body cleansers. Lots of investors are pouring into pressed juices now that millions of people—too busy to eat an apple or carrot, but willing to pay someone to juice it for them—are demanding fresh fruit and vegetables in profuse combinations. Behind the bar, mixologists, mostly in hotels, are bottling their own small-batch carbonated cocktails. Also: ﬂavored ice cubes, misting ﬂavored essences over ﬁnished cocktails and gin and tonic bars. Hard cider will take oﬀ next as beer brewers enter the market to protect their businesses.
Under Starbucks' ownership, Teavana is rolling out tea bar/cafes that team customized brews with food.
5. Chicken: No Longer Humble The humble bird is going haute. Rôtisserie Georgette, a new upscale chicken-focused restaurant in Manhattan, is no mere takeout joint. Run by Georgette Farkas, Daniel Boulud’s former right hand, it has grand space, two rotisseries and a French-accented menu with occasional fried chicken specialties. The $79 roast chicken for two with foie gras at Nomad that arrives looking like Christmas is the restaurant’s best seller by far. If this were just a New York thing, we wouldn’t much care. But chefs around the country are ramping up prices as they play ﬂavor one-upmanship. Poulet Vert ($24) at Marlow in San Francisco is marinated in an anchovy-green sauce. In Boston, Cragie on Main’s roast chicken for two ($74) is cooked sous vide in chicken fat and spices, then ﬁnished with butter and togarashi salt. Chick-a-Biddy in Atlanta does a global take on chicken, serving it fried, piri-piri, jerk style and more.
11. New Wave of Asian Flavors TGI Friday’s oﬀers Sriracha aioli and kimchee’s gone mass market, on pizza, burgers and oysters and in grits and tacos. A new wave of Asian ﬂavors (and menu items) is upon us. Better learn about gochujang— a sweet-spicy Korean amalgam of fermented hot chili paste and soy— jumping from bibimbap to bbq. Shichimi togarashi—Japanese sevenspice of sesame seeds, ginger, nori and hot peppers—is sprinkled on chicken wings, salads, grilled ﬁsh. Shisito peppers will mainstream as snacks and garniture, while Sansho is a slightly milder Japanese version of the Szechuan pepper.
Sweetgreen, a fast-casual health-focused concept, has expanded beyond its Washington, DC, base.
6. Green is the color: Green is the color of “lettuce”—as in money. Healthy food investments are ﬁnally paying oﬀ as a niche market rolls into the mainstream. More than one factor propels this profound market change: the gluten-rejecters, Paleo people, diabetics, weight challenged, vegetarians, vegans and two decades of hectoring by nutritionists and perhaps the First Lady.
12. Look again at Mideast cooking: Forget Spain and Greece. The south side of the Mediterranean and the Levant are where new tastes and dishes are coming from: Turkey, Israel, Morocco, Iraq, Iran. Israel exports not just high tech, but its innovative “New Israeli” cross-cultural cuisine, absorbing ideas and techniques from all over the region. Families ﬂeeing turmoil in Tunisia, Egypt, Iran and Iraq are bringing their splendid food here. Syria’s displaced people may provide another wave of culinary excitement. Explore Turkish street food for ideas. The cookbook “Jerusalem” is ﬂying out of bookstores and you need to read it.
7. When butter’s not enough: Last year we talked about upcharges for bread baskets. Now the ante is upped as chefs litter your table with creative spreads. At The Pass, Houston, you get black garlic mostarda, vanilla tapenade, tomato jam, salted butter. Other places oﬀer whipped lardo, rosemary hummus, roasted garlic butter, smoked ricotta, whipped beet butter, porcini oil, jalapeno oil, smoked eggplant dip, salsa butter, whipped chicken liver butter. Look for more chef-driven spreads to enliven a meal. 8. Fishy Fish The no-no of Caesar salads has become respectable: people are ordering anchovies, especially Spanish salt-packed ones called bocquerones, and even fresh ones. You’ll ﬁnd them on Nicoise salads and fresh mozzarella, or tossed with breadcrumbs atop pasta. They’re ordering fresh sardines, too. Herring hasn’t hit the big-time, but Americans are beginning to give mackerel—another oily ﬁsh—a second look. Who knows, maybe the moment has come to re-menu blueﬁsh. 9. Popups, food fairs and the single-item restaurant: Weekend popup markets (Smorgasburg, Brooklyn; Ferry Terminal, San Francisco and food truck fairs) make room for wacky food creations that often graduate to brick-and-mortar restaurants. 10. I lost my dinner in the funhouse: Food is not enough. Restaurants are enhancing the dining experience by ﬁddling with our senses and redeﬁning “eatertainment.” Avant garde restaurant Ultraviolet, in Shanghai, shanghais 10 high-spending diners nightly to a secret room that radically shifts moods with each course through lights in the ﬂoor, 360-degree high-def projectors, swings in temperature, four smell diﬀusers, 22 speakers, LEDs and more. Chef-owner Paul Pairet calls it “psychotasting.” There are lesser examples, like the Roca brothers of Can Roca in Spain, who have projected images onto their dishes of food to heighten the experience, or David Bouley’s private dining room, called The Pass, which contains a giant screen so guests in New York converse in real time with growers and vintners whose products are on the table—even if the supplier is in Japan.
Falafel and other Middle Eastern classics are entering the mainstream in the U.S.
10 Food Trends to Watch Over the Next Decade www.epicurious.com Dec. 4, 2013
1. VENDING MACHINES The vending machine, last resort of the truly desperate, is in the midst of a much-needed makeover. High-end vending is already common in Asia, where street- and rail-side kiosks dispense everything from noodles and sushi to farm-fresh eggs. Now the trend is catching on in the West, with machines in the U.S. and Europe oﬀering fresh lobsters, ice cream, and quiche.
2. HOMEGROWN It's one thing to buy only locally grown food, as per Alisa Smith and J.B. MacKinnon's 100-mile food diet or Barbara Kingsolver's memoir, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. But the next generation of trendsetters is taking the concept to its logical extreme via window-ledge herb gardens, rooftop chicken coops, or backyard apiaries. The percentage of households growing at least some of their own food is up 24 percent since 2007, according to the National Gardening Association. And many of those gardens are in the big cities—witness New Yorker Manny Howard's My Empire of Dirt.
3. DAREDEVIL DIGESTION Live octopus, fried insects, human placenta, rattlesnake…these are fair game as foodstuﬀs in other cultures, but for Americans, eating what we once perceived as scary or gross is becoming more mainstream. Many may scoﬀ at what Andrew Zimmern ingests on Bizarre Foods, but intrepid organizations like the Boston Gastronauts, the San Francisco Food Adventure Club, and the Organ Meat Society of New York City have been pushing the edgy eating envelope for some time. And as restaurants embrace a nose-to-tail approach, American diners are savoring things they'd once have scorned, including lamb's tongue, chicken feet, and pig's ears.
4. BYOF Pretty much everyone's been to a bring-your-own-bottle restaurant—but what about a bring-your-own-food bar? Early in 2010, the New York Post spotlighted ﬁve BYOF spots in the city, including two that allow patrons to use the house grills. Denver's Star Bar allows patrons to bring their own eats, and Yelp's Chicago edition features a list (albeit brief ) of BYOF spots. This trend may just keep growing, since it's a 'win-win for everyone: Bars get to create a restaurant atmosphere without the hassle of a full kitchen, and customers get an aﬀordable, customizable night out.
5. MORE VEGGIES, PLEASE! Vegetarianism is more popular than ever: In the United States, roughly 12 percent of women under 35 don't eat meat, while 3 percent of the total adult population call themselves strict vegetarians (no meat, ﬁsh, or poultry). Unsurprising and heartening given that, according to a United Nations report, the world's cattle herds do more damage to the environment than all our cars and planes combined.
6. PARED-DOWN PROCESSED FOOD Tired of unpronounceable ingredients and emboldened by healthy-food avengers like Michael Pollan, consumers and the companies that market to them are taking a less-is-more approach when it comes to store-bought foods. This means shorter ingredient lists and more products that are free of preservatives, artiﬁcial colors and ﬂavors, and sugar substitutes. Häagen-Dazs' Five line was in front of the trend, but other companies, including Frito-Lay, Kraft, Campbell's, Beech-Nut, and Starbucks, are reworking their recipes, packaging, and marketing strategies to follow suit.
7. THE NEW MONOGAMY Several companies have recently introduced narrowly focused products designed for very speciﬁc food combinations. Brix Chocolate oﬀers milk, dark, and extra dark bars formulated exclusively for pairing with wine; Daelia's Biscuits for Cheese are made to go with cheese and nothing else ("Sir, please step away from the pâté"); and the Savannah Bee Company bottles a variety of honeys speciﬁcally designed for everything from sweetening tea to enhancing the ﬂavors of food on the grill. Valid responses to our ever-more-sophisticated palates? Or faddish attempts to claim space on crowded market shelves? We'll see how this one turns out.
8. THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT The food world has quickly embraced smartphones, mobile applications, and the iPad, oﬀering a host of fun and convenient tools for everyone from busy moms to locavores to food-porn junkies. In addition to, ahem, our very own Epicurious application, there are apps for just about every foodie need and desire, including searching for restaurants (UrbanSpoon), making reservations (OpenTable), telling friends what restaurant you're dining at (Foursquare), reviewing restaurants (Yelp), ﬁnding out what's in season (Locavore), sharing food photos (Foodspotting), and tracking calories (Lose It!). We're still waiting for the one that cleans your kitchen after a dinner party.
9. MOBILE MEALS Eating-on-the-go options used to run the gamut from McDonald's to Burger King. But in big cities, at least, a new wave of gourmet food trucks is serving up a dizzying array of treats, from free-range lamb burgers and Korean tacos to Belgian waﬄes and artisanal ice cream. With the trend now crowned by a Food Network show, The Great Food Truck Race, it's only a matter of time before the van-guard hits smaller towns and suburbs across the country.
10. THE E-MICROMARKET Running alongside the "eat local" movement is the expansion of Web-based artisanal food stores. Online grocery delivery services like FreshDirect and Peapod have long made weekly food shopping a breeze in the communities they serve, while Amazon and smaller niche Web sites sell international specialty products that can't always be found at your local market. But the decade-old convenience of online food foraging has recently expanded to embrace mom-and-pop vendors via "storefronts" on sites like Foodzie and Foodoro. It's a small world, after all.
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