After a year filled with baking bibles, food halls and powerfood it’s about time for a look into the food future. What can we expect in 2015? What will be the food trends of next year?
1. Comeback of bread + local grains
After all the wheat belly paranoia and the rise of gluten allergies, bread now makes a comeback. But this time it’s bread from the best quality whole grains without any additives. Scandinavia is ahead on this trend, mainly because of the tiny and extremely popular Meyers Bageri from Noma founder Claus Meyer. Or take the ‘superstar bread program’ from top restaurant High Street in Philadelphia. And speaking about grains: local grains will be hot in 2015. Preferably home grinded in your Vitamix.
(picture credits: Meyers Bageri)
2. Tablets and tickets
The role of techonology in hospitality grows. You receive a text message when your table is ready, order your dishes on a tablet, pay with your phone and receive the check in your e-mail afterwards. Also new: reserving tickets for restaurants. Places like San Francisco’s Coi and Volver in Philadelphia already do this. Just like for airplane flights you pay and reserve your spot upfront. Good for the restaurants, because this puts an end to no-shows and reduces the waste of ingredients. And you as a guest are certain of a table. Meanwhile, with personal pricing, the price of that table could be higher than the amount others paid.
3. Food sherpa’s
Even when we are on vacation, we want to eat in the best way possible. Preferably in that little hidden place where only locals go, that none of your friends have even heard of and in which the future Ferran Adria is standing in the kitchen. The search for the ultimate pizza or most authentic restaurants becomes almost more important than the consumption itself. Food sherpa’s or gastroguides take you to the best hidden food spots. Their services aren’t cheap, but you will most definitely impress everyone at home.
Fastcasual concepts like Chipotle keep on growing in popularity, at the expense of fast food. It’s not only about making money these days: it’s about purpose. Many chefs and entrepreneurs are looking into fastcas concepts. No extensive menu filled with molecular emulsions or ironed tablecloths, but affordable and especially very accessible food. Everyone wants to open the new Shake Shack. José Andrés will try it with his vegetable-focused Beefsteak and Michelin chef Joshua Skenes will open the Fat Noodle. In the Netherlands we see the same trend, with top chef Robert Kranenborg for instance, who started the highly popular Thrill Grill and Le Big Fish.
The popularity of yogurt keeps on growing. Also in the Netherlands, with places like Yoghurt Barn and DIY yogurt bars and yogurt taps in supermarkets. Proteins for breakfast are becoming more important and yogurt is a good source. Next step is savory yogurt: Ottolenghi, Jamie Oliver and a growing amount of restaurant chefs serve yogurt with spices with almost every dish, just like we know from the Middle East. And in the United States we see an increase of vegetable yogurt products Pumpkin, beet or tomato yogurt from Blue Hill for instance, or kimchi yogurt at Murray’s Cheese Bar in New York.
(picture credits: Blue Hill)
6. Mix & Match
Consumers want to make their own choices and not be stuck with limited options. In the new Foodmarkt in Amsterdam, customers can mix their own cereals, chocolate sprinkles, six-packs and mini vegetables. Because why should one necessarily buy six of the same beers? In the hospitality industry we see a lot of mix & match as well. Take for instance the new generation of trendy coffee bars, who are often a bakery, bike store, record studio or boutique at the same time. Concepts stores will also remain popular.
7. Updated Diner Classics
Thought we were done with comfort food? Not yet! We see more and more updated versions of classic American diner foods. Like goat meat patty melts at Chicago’s Little Goat and the pimento cheese variation of this classic at Short Order in LA. Or the old-school sundae in a gourmet pumpkin-spice version at Park Avenue Autumn and a sundae with buttermilk ice cream and rhubarb jam at Narcissa (both in New York).
(picture credits: Park Avenue Autumn)
8. From crudo to tapas ghetto
Shared dining remains popular. We want light bites and nibbles instead of the traditional three-course meal. This way we can taste everything and pay less per dish (but don’t ask about the total bill at the end of the evening!). Make sure you don’t end up in the ‘tapas ghetto’ though: the side of the table with all the boring dishes. And if you want to be completely trendy, order crudo and escabeche: raw or in acid poached fish dishes that will follow the ceviche of 2014.
9. Bitter sour
Bitter and sour are the two important flavors of 2015. Both flavors are bold and have a satiating effect, which will keep you feeling full longer. We find bitter in products like collard greens, tonic, ale and dark chocolate. Sour can be find in the Japanse yuzu, drinking vinegars, fermented products and Pisco Sour like cocktails.
10. About ugly’s and insects
Pay attention, because these products will be hot in 2015. Ugly’s: ugly vegetables like celery root and parnsip, often prepared in non-traditional ways, but also in the form of misshapen vegetables. Coconut blossom sugar grows in popularity as an alternative for ordinary white sugar. Handmade, rustic ceramic bowls and plates from local designers, like we see in Scandinavian and Brooklyn restaurants. And if you ask Noma’s Rene Redzepi, the consumption of insects will become more mainstream next year.