Author: Kim Pitsko, Digital Marketing Manager, Georgia State University MBA
With a new year at hand, expert foodies across the globe are presenting their findings as to what foods are going to be hot for 2019. The main theme we see is indulgence – with a growing economy and burgeoning job force, it’s clear that people are ready to spice up their palates when they’re dining out! Here are the 2019 food trends that caught our eye. If you’re a foodie like us, check out what’s on the menu and where you can find these trends within the Dinova Marketplace. If you’re a restaurateur, feel free to use this as inspiration for new, on-trend menu items you’d like to try!
1. Veganuary. The Economist and Forbes Magazine have both declared 2019 as the Year of the Vegan. What was once a type of diet reserved only for your hipster college roommate is now a mainstream, booming business. Healthy eating is incredibly important in the business travel world according to our findings with GBTA. Vegan dishes continue to be at the forefront of the head chef’s mind in 2019. Your basic pasta dishes aren’t going to cut it anymore – when it comes to vegan fanfare, the bigger the twist, the bigger the buck.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: Veggie Grill is known for putting veggies first, crafting every menu item with energy-pumping flavor from plant-based ingredients, with dishes that are free of meat, dairy, eggs and other animal products. For a vegan option that’s packed with fiber and an excellent source of protein, we recommend the Rustic Farm Bowl, made with farro, grilled mushrooms, roasted yams, braised cannellini beans, broccoli pesto, roasted tomatoes and red pepper sauce.
Another vegan-licious option is Le Pain Quotidien. Their most popular vegan dishes include Quinoa Taboule Salad, Six-Vegetable Quiche and Chia Seed Pudding. Zoes Kitchen can’t be forgotten for the Vegan lovers, either. Their Hummus with Harissa Red Pepper makes a perfect afternoon energy-boosting snack. There are so many fast food options that, while known for their meats, also make a point to consider vegans in the drive thrus. Taco Bell and Pizza Hut offer vegan options, as well as KFC and Dunkin’ Donuts.
2. Carbs. Are. Back. Don’t call it a comeback. They’ve been here for years. After decades of trendy diets shunning the free table bread, carbs finally have a newfound appreciation. Come 2019, not only should one expect to see a rise in carb-heavy menu items, but also a focus on heritage grains and artisanal bread preparation. Baking bread is a true art, so we’re pumped to give credit where credit’s due: all you bakers out there, we can’t wait to sample your artistry this year!
Try the trend, Dinova Style: The best artisanal breads can be found in local neighborhood bakeries. While those may be hard to find for most people on the go, Dinova foodies know where to go to get the inside scoop. Example: Theo’s Brother’s Bakery is a neighborhood bakery a hop, skip and a jump from our Dinova headquarters that features home-baked sweets and treats and a robust lunch menu. Consider bringing pull-apart rolls and hummus to your afternoon meetings for a flavorful pick-me-up!
Are you looking to enjoy carbs during a casual dinner with colleagues and co-workers? You can’t go wrong with Carrabba’s Italian Grill – Amore Mondays include three courses starting at $12.99 for their fresh pasta dishes, or you can indulge in Pizza & Wine Wednesday. On hump days at Carrabba’s, you can choose any wood-fired pizza for $9.99 and $5 glasses of Sangria.
Finally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t brag on our beloved Washington, D.C. hotspot, Hank’s Pasta Bar. This rustic, seasonally-driven Italian restaurant features hand-made fresh pasta with menu changes every season. This winter, one can enjoy heart-warming dishes including Ossobuco Alla Massimo: cross-cut veal shanks with vegetables, white wine and broth over polenta.
3. Georgian Cuisine. Nation’s Restaurant News is heralding Georgian cuisine as the 2019 cuisine of the year. Breads, cheeses, eggs and spices are the key ingredients to this Eastern European culinary style, with one of its signature dishes being khachapuri (who doesn’t want to eat a bread boat filled with cheese and a runny egg?!). Georgia is also one of the oldest wine-producing regions of the world, and with vintages heavily intertwined with the country’s food identity.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: To get a taste of a next-door to Georgia flavor profile, Zaytinya offers an innovative mezze menu inspired by Turkish, Greek and Lebanese cuisines served up in a sleek and modern setting, from the creative mind of Chef José Andrés. If you frequent Washington, D.C. for business, we highly recommend taking your clients and colleagues here. One of the menu items includes a tour from Chef Michael Costa of the most exotic flavors of the Mediterranean.
4. Clean, crisp lagers. The days of sour beers and hop bombs are slowly dissipating into something simpler – after all, when you’re meeting with clients and colleagues, how much time do you really have to pick out the right beer for you? While it may be a bit more difficult to brew, clean lagers are expected to be the highlight of the bar menus this year.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: For your brew-loving clients, Gordon Biersch is the place to be. Their authentic German lagers are crafted on-site using only malted barley, hops, yeast and pure, filtered water. For a crisp lager, we suggest the classic Golden Export. Rock Bottom Brewery is also a fantastic option for crisp and refreshing beers on tap, including Charlotte’s Gold, a German kolsch ale that balances a light malt with delicate hops.
5. Artisanal Donuts. Donuts with unique fillings and flavorings are keeping business travelers talking during their power breakfasts. Artisanal donuts are also growing in popularity because of office breakfast pick-ups; many are opting for cakes that start a conversation and create a foodie experience in the break room.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: You can keep your donut-eating habits within your New Year’s gut-friendly goals thanks to 2B Whole Gluten-Free European Bakery. Their donut holes make the perfect gift for a client or co-worker for any celebratory occasion, and their flavors change with the season, so there’s always something new to try!
6. Globally-inspired breakfast. We’ve previously shared the rise in breakfast as one of the key meals for a business setting over recent years. Now foodies are spicing up the most important meal of the day with global cuisines to add a twist to an average Monday morning.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: Spice up your power breakfast at an indie with local flare, such as Ambriza Social Mexican Kitchen in Houston. This local gem is known for its authentic Mexican food that creates fun memories. You can’t go wrong with Huevos Rancheros for breakfast, but you can change things up a bit by trying another traditionally-based dish, such as Barbacoa, upgraded with polenta and egg: Braised Barbacoa served over a bed of cotija polenta, served with a sunny side egg, topped with pickled jalapenos, cilantro, and pickled onions.
For a grab-and-go option, consider Au Bon Pain. Their Smoked Salmon Wasabi sandwich has a pumped up Asian flare, featuring smoked salmon, cucumbers, wasabi spread and herbed cream cheese on a plain bagel.
7. Reducing food waste. With the outrage over environmental crises involving plastic straws and other cutlery, the hospitality industry is working overtime to develop sustainable operations that reduce overall waste. It’s not just about the straws – sustainable food sourcing to reduce the amount of waste is not only environmentally responsible, but it helps the bottom line for the restaurateur.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: Pacific Catch Westcoast Fish House in San Francisco has been committed to being a positive influence in the sustainable food movement, long before the plastic straws caused a stir. This ocean-friendly restaurant sources disposable, compostable eating utensils and straws, recycles its fryer oil into bio fuel, and -uses green-minded materials in its facilities, including LED light bulbs, energy-efficient hand dryers and aerators on faucets.
If you’re in the D.C. area, check out Bidwell. Chef John Mooney curated his own aeroponic garden to harvest the restaurant’s lettuce for their dishes and garnishes, which reduces water use by over ten percent.
8. Beets.What’s not to love about this simple veggie that packs in the flavor for a delectable entree? While beets are rootsy, they’re also undeniably visually appealing, with their blood ruby-like hue. It’s a fantastic garnish to make any meal high-end and power-packed, and one should expect to see it pop up in menus everywhere in 2019.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: Luna Grill, whose array of power-packed Mediterranean crafted foods can amp up anyone’s energy over lunchtime, has a Better Beet Bowl, which features organic spring mix, beets, roasted yellow tomatoes, basil, feta, almonds and signature house dressing. “High in antioxidants and known inflammation fighters, beets are a wonderful super food to incorporate into your diet,” said Luna Grill co-founder and Chief Cuisine Officer Maria Pourteymour when the bowl was first introduced. “Rich in nitric oxide, beets boost oxygen supplies to both the brain and body, enhancing cardiovascular performance while also boosting memory, mood and attention.”
9. Good-for-you desserts.Need we say more? As we are a health-conscious society, we want our desserts to do more than cure a sweet tooth. Superfoods – including hummus, pumpkins and pistachios – will be some of the key ingredients offering fresh, healthy takes on desserts in 2019. Restaurateurs will also be focused on delivering unique yet gluten-free flavors for their growing audience.
Try the trend, Dinova Style: A local gem that we love here in Atlanta is Muss & Turner’s, a neighborhood joint focused on sustainable and seasonal foods that is deli by day and bistro by night. Their dessert menu includes unique twists to the traditional cakes and pies, but there’s always a good-for-you option. Their Whatchamahavit is rich in peanut butter, pralines and almonds for a superfood sweet satisfying the end-of-the-meal treat craving we all know too well.
What 2019 food trend are you excited to dig your fork into? Tell us in the comment section below!
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