Here at Lightspeed, we’re a big group of self confessed foodies. We love when chefs get crazy creative with dishes, and sometimes we crave the simplicity of comfort food. No matter the cuisine, we’re game to try it, so here are some of the food trends that we’re massively keen on right now.
BLTs, Mac and Cheese, s’mores, Spaghetti and Meatballs, and rootbeer floats, anyone? Who says that when we grow up, we need only have a refined palette and a pension for caviar, massaged kale and seared ahi? Sure, we can love all that stuff, but why stop indulging in the classics from time-to-time?
We loved ‘em for a reason: because they’re friggin’ delicious. And chefs are beginning to take note. Guy Grossi’s Pezzo went ahead and brought the pizza pocket back, Nickel Diner in Los Angeles is serving up the best homemade pop tart we’ve ever had, and our pals at Gelato Messina are often treating us to a blast from the past; Fairy Bread, Candy Warhol, Twix’d .
Yes, we’re talking ants, crickets and locusts. The insect food trend goes beyond things like cricket powder as the new champion protein. Let’s take a look at ants, for example. Some ants contain enough formic acid that they actually taste like lemon. René Redzepi’s, Noma (you know, like, the best restaurant in the world?) serves live ants on shrimp, and customers love it. And New York’s Toloache restaurant dishes up grasshopper tacos.
We know your mouths are watering now. In all seriousness, though, an insect-filled meal is high in protein and nutrients, and the environmental footprint of bug farming is crazy low. It’s a win-win in so many ways, and a trend that likely isn’t going anywhere. Get ready for more wriggly menu options coming your way, because this buzz-worthy trend is here to stay.
The pretty produce craze is swiftly becoming ancient history, and this is a trend we are crazy keen on. Folks in Western society have been the primary culprits as far as gravitating toward attractive looking fruits and vegetables goes. But with countless campaigns now circulating, promoting less waste, people are beginning to realise that the ugly produce they used to shun is actually some of the tastiest. It’s ugly because it’s not genetically modified and pumped full of chemicals, but it also happens to be some of the best, most flavourful produce around. So much produce goes to waste simply because it doesn’t look pretty, but why?
This isn’t exactly a food trend, but we thought it apt to include anyway. You know we’re big fans of this one, and aside from the obvious (it’s, like, what we do), going cashless is great on so many levels. First off, it saves time. It also reduces minimises human error, and makes bookkeeping a million times easier. Plus, money is dirty, and we’re talking toilet bowl dirty, so why on earth do we want the stuff around our food? Cashlessness is probably one of our favourite trends on this list, and more and more restaurants are embracing it.
Low or no alcohol
Of course, we love beer, wine, spirits and cocktails, but it’s also refreshing to see this trend beginning to take off as people are becoming more health conscious. The population of sober millennials is on the rise, and it’s fuelling a movement of low to no alcohol beverages, which is pretty cool.
The wonderful world of booze certainly isn’t going anywhere, but companies that make the stuff are beginning to get creative with their brewing methods to reduce alcohol content. Our mates at PS40 have taken over the Aussie bar scene, coming up with innovative new sodas, cleverly brewed using fresh ingredients. Less alcohol means fewer hangovers, and we see nothing wrong with this. When’s the last time you heard someone say, “I wish I had a hangover”? Yeah, that’s what we thought.
Black sesame ice cream, halvah, tahini tiramisu – these are all popular desserts made from sesame seeds. While they’re all deliciously satisfying if you have a sweet tooth, they’re also low in carbs, high in good fats, and loaded with protein. It seems tahini desserts are everywhere these days.
Up until recently, though, unless you were in the Middle East, you probably weren’t seeing much tahini outside of your tub of hummus, or maybe your Goddess-inspired salad dressing. These days, however, halvah is everywhere, and creamy tahini is cropping up as an ingredient on the dessert menu in some of the world’s finest restaurants. It’s refreshing to see the sesame seed getting the time in the spotlight that it so rightly deserves, and it’s another foodie trend that’s likely not going anywhere any time soon.
Veganism is, like, totally normal
Veganism isn’t just for hemp satchel-toting, Birkenstock-wearing tree-huggers anymore. 2019 is the year of the vegan. Climate change, health consciousness and the concern for animal welfare has turned this fringe movement into a full-blown way of life for many people. Plant-based festivals are cropping up everywhere, and if you’re a trendy restaurant in a cosmopolitan area, then you probably have a host of vegan options on the menu. Whilst we are fans of all food, it’s amazing to see the industry keeping up with the individual principles of society, and chefs experimenting with new territory.
A little fun fact: Despite the group being famous for their meat dishes, Sarah Doyle, Elvis Abrahanowicz’s wife and one of the geniuses behind The Porteno Group is a long-time vegetarian. We are sure her influence plays a key role in keeping their offering diverse, and full of fun and exciting flavours – whether you’re chowing down on a veggie tamale, or getting stuck into a plate of wood-fired bone marrow.
2019 food trends
The list of recent food trends is virtually endless, but these are just some of the ones we love. Food should be anything but boring, even in its simplicity, which is why we’re so keen on following the latest new fashions in flavours. We double dare you to give insects a go in an upcoming meal, but if you’re not feeling so daring, then, at the very least, why not sautée yourself up a big ole plate of ugly veggies? The planet will thank you, and so will your appetite.
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