The farm-to-table movement has gained great popularity in the restaurant industry in recent years. An increasing number of patrons today are willing and eager to pay a premium for ingredients that they know to be incredibly fresh. They are also willing to pay more for ingredients that have traveled a short distance from local farmland, thus resulting in meals that have been prepared in a manner that is more environmentally responsible. But what if that farmland were as nearby as the restaurant’s roof or back yard? Forget mere rooftop gardening; restaurants today are planting what they’ve come to call rooftop farms, and these “farms” can yield, on a small scale, organic produce used in a whole variety of creative ways throughout the menu. Read more
Long before the luxuries of farming, grocery stores, and restaurants, our ancestors hunted and gathered food in order to survive. Over the years, modern-day shoppers and restaurant patrons have come to feel a disconnect between their dining habits and the distant, often unknown sources of their mass-produced food; thus, the concern for ethical and sustainable eating has spread rapidly. Consumer demand for organic and humanely raised food has increased, along with an interest in consuming ingredients that are both locally produced and in season. For the past several years, the farm-to-table movement has begun to evolve a step farther, giving rise to the “wilderness-to-table” movement, with restaurant patrons seeking out venues that serve what has come to be described as “locally foraged and hunted” food – and even cocktails containing ingredients that are locally foraged.
There are a lot of beers out there these days, and you have decided that it is finally time to add craft beers to your menu. But what craft beer or beers should you add? This week’s most popular searches were about Chimay beer, so we know that beer enthusiasts want Trappist ales today. But what about tomorrow? What craft beer will your customers want to see on their beer menu?
These days, there’s nothing new about using technology to help expedite the process of ordering food at a restaurant. Once waitstaff at some restaurants started sending orders back to the kitchen using hand-held devices, it was only a matter of time before similar technology made it directly into the hands of customers – most commonly now through online delivery apps like Seamless and GrubHub. Today, some airline passengers, while they wait to board at the gate area, may even use iPad menus to order, with the assurance that their items will be brought directly to them within minutes.
2013 witnessed the rise of upscale pork bellies, gluten-free everything, and Dominique Ansel’s delicious cronut–a mix between a croissant and a donut–what new foods will the new year bring? Here are our predictions for food industry trends and foods that your customers will be craving in 2014.
Mention hard cider ten years ago, and the name of this cold alcoholic beverage might not even register with more than a handful of traditional American beer drinkers. Not so today. Consumer demand for cider is increasing, and big corporations are moving in on this promising market, with Angry Orchard cider the fastest growing brand of the Boston Beer Company (producer of Samuel Adams). Even Stella Artois and Michelob – both owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev – now sell hard cider. Last year, MillerCoors bought the Crispin Cider Company. European financial institution the Rabobank describes the U.S. market for hard cider as “just emerging.” Read more
Hey you, listen up. We’re making a New Year’s prediction. Let’s just consult this crystal ball here… Aha! We see more money for you in 2014! According to our amazing powers, this year should be filled with profits for you and your restaurant, because your new iPad wine list means that you’ll increase your drink sales and then live it up with your earnings. Don’t give us that look, we’re sure we’re right because we have the facts to back us up. Here are three money-making secrets to get your tablet wine list working for you this year. Read more
The scene is a common one. A group of diners are out for a nice meal when suddenly the server hands over the wine list. It’s pages long and feels as heavy as your high school chemistry book. As you scan the list, you are overwhelmed by the hundreds of wine you have never even heard of before. You ask the server for a few recommendations but he seems equally nonplussed, not to mention, frantically busy.
Then you glance at the prices. One hundred dollars for a bottle of wine you might not even like? No way. You give up and order the cheapest bottle of wine (or the second cheapest, just to be a little decadent). You don’t know if you made the right choice, but at least it didn’t break the bank.
Thankfully, there is a better way. Electronic menus are changing the way people choose wine and enhancing the dining experience from start to finish. With an electronic menu, the guest is empowered to make the best decision for his or her palette as well as for their meal. Read more