The North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association (NCRLA) is proud to report the 2018 culinary trends announced this week by the National Restaurant Association, in conjunction with the American Culinary Federation. A survey of 700 professional chefs was conducted in October and November to determine which food, beverage and culinary concepts will be “what’s hot” in the coming year.
“The North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association is excited to share culinary trends that will influence our members in the coming year,” said Lynn Minges, president and CEO, NCRLA. “From independent hotel and restaurant operators to some of our nation’s most recognized brands, NCRLA will continue to serve as a fundamental resource for our members as these emerging trends build momentum in 2018.”
TOP 10 FOOD TRENDS
- New cuts of meat (e.g. shoulder tender, oyster steak, Vegas Strip Steak, Merlot cut)
- House-made condiments
- Street food-inspired dishes (e.g. tempura, kabobs, dumplings, pupusas)
- Ethnic-inspired breakfast items (e.g. chorizo scrambled eggs, coconut milk pancakes)
- Sustainable seafood
- Healthful kids’ meals
- Vegetable carb substitutes (e.g. cauliflower rice, zucchini spaghetti)
- Uncommon herbs (e.g. chervil, lovage, lemon balm, papalo)
- Authentic ethnic cuisine
- Ethnic spices (e.g. harissa, curry, peri peri, ras el hanout, shichimi)
TOP 10 CONCEPT TRENDS
- Hyper-local (e.g. restaurant gardens, onsite beer brewing, house-made items)
- Chef-driven fast casual concepts
- Natural ingredients/clean menus
- Food waste reduction
- Veggie-centric/vegetable-forward cuisine (e.g. fresh produce is star of the dish)
- Environmental sustainability
- Locally sourced meat and seafood
- Locally sourced produce
- Simplicity/back to basics
- Farm/estate-branded items
NCRLA members throughout North Carolina have already started implementing many of these trends, most notably top restaurants integrating new cuts of meat.
“We bring in half and whole animals so it gives us an opportunity to educate our staff and guests on some cuts that maybe they haven’t experienced before,” said Matthew Krenz, culinary director and executive chef, The Dunhill Hotel and The Asbury. “We go through all of the various cuts that we have and save up some of the smaller pieces so that we can have a few extra portions.”
To see the full report released by the NRA, visit the NCRLA website, www.ncrla.org. To learn more about chefs across the state who are executing these trends, please contact Largemouth Communications.
Established in 1947, the North Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association (NCRLA) works to advance and protect North Carolina’s $24 billion restaurant, foodservice and lodging industry. The association provides access to the resources and support restaurant and lodging professionals need to lead thriving businesses, while serving as conscientious, contributing members of an unparalleled industry. To learn more information about NCRLA or its membership opportunities and cost-saving benefits, please visit www.ncrla.org.