• 5 Food Trends for 2015 Give Meetings & Events a Fresh Taste

    The National Restaurant Association asked hundreds of chefs to rate top food trends for 2015. The results will give meetings and events a zesty edge.

     
    POSTED May 21, 2015
     

Food plays an important role in our lives. It has the power to comfort or disappoint; it can tell you something about another person (are they a risk taker or do they play it safe?); and most importantly, it brings people together. So, what’s the state of the culinary front in 2015? The National Restaurant Association surveyed 1,276 professional chefs from the American Culinary Federation who told us what’s hot (what’s not), what’s on its way up (what’s on its way out) and how they really feel about customers snapping pictures of their food.

Q&A: Chefs Give Their Two Cents

» WHAT IS THE HOTTEST TECHNOLOGY TREND IN RESTAURANTS FOR 2015?
29% Tablet computers (e.g. iPad) for menus, wine lists and ordering
26% Smartphone/tablet apps for consumers (e.g. ordering, menus, daily deals)
22% Smartphone/tablet apps for chefs/restaurateurs
21% Mobile/wireless payment options

» HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT CUSTOMERS TAKING PHOTOS OF THEIR RESTAURANT FOOD AND POSTING THEM ON SOCIAL MEDIA WHILE DINING?
57% It’s free advertising and should be encouraged
32% It’s fine as long as they are discreet
9% It’s disruptive and should be discouraged

» ALCOHOL: WHAT’S HOT
75% Micro-distilled/artisan spirits
72% Locally produced beer/wine/spirits
71% On-site barrel-aged drinks
69% Regional signature cocktails
67% Culinary cocktails (e.g. savory, fresh ingredients)
65% “New Make” whiskey
64% Food-beer pairings

» NEW TOP TRENDS IN 2015
No. 5 Natural ingredients/minimally processed food
No. 9 Food waste reduction/management
No. 23 Artisan butchery
No. 40 House-made condiments
No. 53 Oven-baked items in kids’ meals

» YESTERDAY’S NEWS
74% Insects
64% Foam/froth/air
61% Gazpacho
61% Bacon-flavored/covered chocolate

Ten years ago, when celebrating the 10th anniversary of my company, Elias Events, I wrote an article about the 10 changes I witnessed over the years. Now at the 20-year mark, I feel the need to write another article. This time around the changes in the special events industry are astounding, and to say advances in technology are a driving force behind special events is an understatement.

 

Question: What is your one must-have for business travel?
 

"My Mophie power station so I don’t have to compete for outlets during a flight delay or have that awkward moment of leaning into my neighbor’s lap while trying to find an outlet on the plane."

India Rhodes, CSEP Dallas Partner | Wilkinson Rhodes