Calling all Foodies! It’s that time of the year again where we brush up on new things to add to our plate – literally. Annually, our reliable gastronomic friends at The Food People come up with predictions on food trends; the recent release is for 2018. It is safe to say that the direction of where London Food is heading to this year is something you should look forward to! If you don’t want to be stuck on Instagramming Avocados on toast, better take note of the hottest London Food Trends for 2018:
We are going green
According to Veganuary, we tipped the scale and grew by 260%! A whopping 60,000 people signed up and pledged to be Vegan. Tied up with the Vegan movement is the rise of gourmet seaweed. The rise in its popularity started after Jamie Oliver claimed it played a significant role in his weight loss. According to Jamie ‘it is the most nutritious vegetable in the world’. Home cooks have started to experiment with it. It has also started to become a household staple together with the common vegetables found in our pantry. Simona Cohen Vida, Waitrose’s product developer even said that “Seaweed is one of this year’s biggest trends in veg which we’re seeing on the menus of London’s top and most creative restaurants.”
Although women (88%) outnumber men (10%) when it comes to loving the Vegan diet, a positive food trend this 2018 is the rise of Faux Food. You will notice the gradual change up of “Bro-tastic” dude food. Food that has been traditionally meat heavy is slowly switching up to being vegetable based while keeping its classic characteristics of indulgent, generous, and rich. Chefs and restaurants have joined the switch and have started to embrace a more plant based menu available to choose from. These creative and delicious meat imitations will convince you to join the 60,000 people who signed up to be Vegan!
The Rise of Zero Waste: Root to Stalk
Another interesting food trend this 2018 coming all the way from the streets of NY is the rise of zero waste. According to trend forecaster MINTEL, the focus on sustainability and eliminating food waste is growing stronger each month. A food waste pop up restaurant called wastED was brought to Oxford Street all the way from New York. This was made possible through a collaboration between London’s Selfridges and chef Dan Barber of Blue Hill restaurant.You have got that right! Leftover food is no longer cold, but instead hot this 2018. Why, you may ask? WRAP (UK’s waste and recycling body) says that each household throws out £13bn worth of food that could have been eaten. As per Sustainable Restaurant Association, the British hospitality industry wastes enough food each year to fill London’s Shard almost 11 times. 11 times! A good enough reason to hop on the Zero Waste bandwagon! Time to make sure food fills our bellies instead of the garbage.
Fresh, organic, and local
The London food scene is slowly shifting to local, organic, and home-grown ingredients this 2018. Selling and buying local helps with strengthening relationships with consumers while providing fresh food items. Numerous restaurants have shifted their focus on sourcing local ingredients rather than importing. This allows them to direct their efforts towards serving intricate plates rather than increasing profit. Restaurants have now deviated from the usual sources and have gone out of their way to search for local suppliers that can provide the best of the best for each ingredient in their menu. Oh, what a time to be alive! Kitchens have now embraced the idea of a changing menu dependent on what is in season. This favorite food trend for 2018 of mine entails that the ever-changing menu is willfully British, sustainable, fresh, and organic!
To further highlight this food trend, according to the Sustainable Restaurant Association, an emphasis on local sourcing of fruit, vegetables, meat, and dairy products should be made, and oh boy do some of our friends take this seriously. It’s amazing how far we’re going to make sourcing locally even in urban locations possible. Chef Michael Roux has taken salad production to a different level – would you believe we have nine micro greens and three varieties of herb growing in tunnels 33 meters below Clapham North Station? This project has reduced 70% less water than normal production through efficiently installed hydroponic equipment and LED lighting.
Another interesting story is how we have authentic Mexican cheese (Yes, buddies. Mexican cheese) underneath a railway arch in Peckham, South East London. Don’t believe me? Check out Gringa Dairy.
These movements emphasize just how serious the advance towards local sourcing is.
Always Leave Room for Dessert
In this case, you better have lotsof room for dessert. This year marks the return of the monstrous scoops of ice cream. London food this 2018 includes a treat for every sweet tooth there is out there. Say goodbye to single scoop boring ice cream cones and say hello to mountains of ice cream, doughnuts, colorful sprinkles, chocolates, and waves of buttercream. You can guarantee that these desserts are not just a treat for your taste buds but will up your Instagram feed too. The development of desserts is unbelievable as these Dessert shops in London get creative with what they offer consumers. From milkshakes with “toppings” – cookies and doughnuts are toppings, right? To bubble waffles stuffed with ice cream, sprinkles, and cream. The Dessert game is strong this 2018!