Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: Colorado, kombucha and pupusas

This column originally appeared in the February issue of Yellow Scene magazine in Colorado By JOHN LEHNDORFF As a lifelong food geek, I jumped at the opportunity in 2009 to work on Eat In Eat Out, a new report focused on U.S. food and beverage trends. Here are some predictions and how they are manifesting in the … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: Expiration dates; banning bluefin; Eataly; new product trials

 –  From Slate.com: “Expiration dates are intended to inspire confidence, but they only invest us with a false sense of security. The reality is that the onus lies with consumers to judge and maintain the freshness and edibility of their food—by checking for offensive slime, rank smells, and off colors. Perhaps, then, we should do away … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: Cooking Channel; right stuff-ed burgers; entree paparrazi

– The Times of London reports that at Il Vino d’Enrico Bernardo in Paris, the menu only lists wine. Diners pick a bottle and the chef picks the food.  – Pegasusnews.com reports that so many diners are using cell phone sto snap photos of their food and the restaurants that it’s prompting restaurateurs to contemplate a camera ban. … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants

U.S. TRENDS: Blame boomers for supper slump; “important” eateries

If you are a restaurateur, you’re justifiably worried. If you own a discount natural foods supermarket with wide aisles, you’re pretty optimistic at a new study by NPD, a market research firm. If you’re a Baby Boomer, get ready to be blamed yet again.  Supper is the restaurant industry’s largest sales generator but the meal has been the weakest … Continue reading

Eating / Food and Cooking

TRENDS: Decreasing SKUs; Peeps multiplying; soup lie detector

From The Wall Street Journal: “HJ Heinz Co. ceo William Johnson said Feb. 17 that consumers have settled into a money-saving mind-set, including using coupons substantially more than in the past and preparing more meals at home. He said the behavioral changes, particularly prominent among families with children, would benefit Heinz and other packaged-food makers. … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating

U.S. FOOD TRENDS: acai pizza? booze & caffeine? toasted beef gelee

The Wall Street Journal recently did a Q&A with chef and Slow Food/localvore icon Alice Waters who opened Chez Panisse in Berkeley 39 years ago.  Waters said: – “(Good food) is not inexpensive. But we make choices about what to value. Some people would rather spend their money on cell phones or gym shoes or on a bigger … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

2010 FOOD TRENDS: Product placement; Stevia vs. monk fruit

— In the  I-Own-the-Cookie-Jar department, Reuters reports that  Hugo Chavez, president of Venezuela, is engaged in “negotiations” to acquire the Cada supermarket chain, which is owned by France’s Casino. A month ago, Chavez also engaged in “negotiations” when he  expropriated another of Casino’s chains. The Cada acquisition would give Chavez substantial control over the country’s food distribution. … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating

WORLD TRENDS: Walk a mile for a camel burger; proper haggis

From Reuters: For 20 UAE dirhams, or about $6, Local House restaurant in Dubai offers a quarter-pound camel burger, loaded with cheese and smothered in burger sauce, the Xpress weekly newspaper reports. Ali Ahmad Esmail, Local House assistant manager, told the paper that the burger patties were fat- and cholesterol-free. But he declined to say how … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating

TASTE TRENDS: Is black garlic with snails 2010’s ham ‘n’ cheese?

    Just wait until the McEngland burger is introduced…  Associated Press Italy’s agriculture minister is defending his sponsorship of McDonald’s new all-Italian burger amid criticism that he is sacrificing Italy’s culinary reputation. Minister Luca Zaia has argued that McDonald’s new McItaly burger – using all Italian beef, Asiago cheese and artichoke spread – will pump $4.9 … Continue reading

1 / Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

GROCERY TRENDS: Safeway Select Nasi Goreng signals seismic shift

Certain new grocery store products can make a big splash just by sitting on the shelf. The other day I was walking past the frozen vegetable cases at my neighborhood Safeway in Boulder, Colorado. I spied Safeway Select Chimichurri Rice and Safeway Select Nasi Goreng. First thought: The mainstream American home cook may be advancing … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: Kiwi meat pie pizza? Burgers with figs? Beer and bones

… From naturalfoodsmerchandiser.com: Grocery retailers could increase annual food sales by 3.2 percent as a result of consumers choosing to eat at home more, according to a new report from Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council of North America. The economy has caused frugal customers to shift away from dining out in favor of cooking at home. The … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: Let them eat chocolate in China

– From Agence France-Presse: The European Union has introduced a “green” logo that starting in July must be shown on all packaged organic foods sold in Europe. The logo of a green leaf with 12 stars was chosen through a design contest. – From the NDP Group: “Average eater check for midscale (i.e., Denny’s/IHOP) morning … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating

Don’t order coffee … and other V-Day tips for guys

John Mariani, the author of one of my favorite food reference books, The Dictionary of American Food and Drink, offers some true guys’ do’s and don’ts for Valentine’s Day at JohnMariani.com: By now, every single restaurant in North America is booked solid for Valentine’s Day, which is, of course, the worst day to take the woman you … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FOOD TRENDS: U.K. locavores; France ‘questionable’; say ‘no’ to new products

From foodanddrinkeurope.com: According to IGD, which conducted a survey of over 1000 shoppers in the UK, 30 per cent said they have specifically bought local food in the last month. The  2006, just 15 per cent said yes to the same question. Of these, some 57 per cent gave their reason as perceived freshness; But 54 per cent also … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

FEBRUARY U.S. DINING TRENDS: Burger King discovers girls! Boomers & fries!

From Advertising Age: “The superfan is merely a term coined by Burger King to describe the fast-food hamburger-restaurant industry’s most frequent user,” Burger King CEO John Chidsey told investors during an earnings conference call last week. “To clarify, it’s not just 18- to 34-year-old males, it’s all ages and all household demographics, with over half … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

TASTE TRENDS: Caffeinated alcohol, discounted veggies, ‘Big Mother’

– From the New York Times: COATBRIDGE, Scotland — What is it about Buckfast Tonic Wine that makes it so alluring to consumers and yet so repulsive to politicians?  The drink is 15 percent alcohol by volume, a bit stronger than most wines. Also, each 750 milliliter bottle contains as much caffeine as eight cans … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

U.S. Food Trends: “Matures” lean to independents, quiet rooms

  Older diners’ choices in restaurants reflect particular attitudes and needs, according to the Restaurants & Institutions’ 2010 New American Diner Study, as reported by Chain Leader: – two-thirds of adults say they are more likely to have dinner at a chain on a weekday, and on the weekend, the figure is just over half.   71.3 percent are … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

U.S. 2010 DINING TRENDS: What is good service?

The Restaurants & Institutions’ 2010 New American Diner Study offers a wealth of information and insight into how people see eateries and servers. The study asked consumers to name their top three components of good service at a restaurant; among the choices provided, “a friendly disposition” (56%), “stopping by regularly to check if I need anything else” … Continue reading

Dining and Restaurants / Eating / Food and Cooking

US FOOD TRENDS: For whom the cheap burger tolls

A sea change in burger consumption patterns has already hit, according to the Wall Street Journal: “Burger King doesn’t disclose traffic by demographic group, but said in its last quarterly earnings release that the decline was “driven by continued adverse macroeconomic conditions, including record levels of unemployed and underemployed workers, especially super fan customers.” On … Continue reading