Restaurant management entails being ahead of the curve for upcoming trends and making efforts to capitalize on them. Three major factors will rule for 2013 including high commodity costs, consumers’ growing sense of culinary adventure and the ingenuity of chefs and restaurateurs. Check out this compilation of the top 10 trends of the year.
Chicken breast: Expect 2013 to be the year of the chicken. With the effects of the drought looming over this year, commodity experts expect most other meat to be expensive for most of the year. Some cuts of pork may be affordable until Easter. Wing prices will be rise, and to the annoyance of restaurateurs who buy wings by the pound but sell them by the piece, wings will likely remain popular. Expect to see more chicken breast items as well as ‘boneless wings’ made of breast meat.
Avocado: Avocado is fast, healthy and indulgent. High in fat, unctuous in texture, and not inexpensive as far as fruit goes, it’s high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat and rich in antioxidants and is becoming increasingly popular on sandwiches, for example Subway’s most recent promotion in 2012.
Bycatch: Anything a fishing boat catches when it means to catch something else — flounder instead of shrimp, for example — is called bycatch, and it’s traditionally regarded as waste. However, with high food costs and diners becoming increasingly adventuresome, junk fish is now a delicacy. The ‘bycatch’ will become the new ‘catch of the day’.
Game meat: The chief executive of New York City-based better-burger chain Bareburger says bison burgers outsell the restaurant’s turkey burgers by two to one, and lamb burgers by four to one. Other chefs report a growing popularity of elk, and venison is now a regular addition to Season 52’s winter menu. Antelope is making strides, too, although it might not find its place on menus for a couple of years.
Tropical fruits: Expect to see coconut in iced coffees and cocktails, passion fruit in cocktails and iced teas, and mango and guava in lemonade. Tangerine and pineapple will be popular too. Ginger, though not a fruit, will be seen in a growing array of cocktails, teas and housemade sodas. Tropical fruits allow customs to have the perfect amount of exotic and familiarity.
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