Having benefited from global travel across five continents, Matt has cast his expert eye across a number of emerging trends that seem to be gathering global momentum. We pick up on the key points to look out for in the year ahead:
1. If 2015 was all about pickling and fermenting, it looks like 2016 is going to be all about open fire cooking.
Grant Achatzpicked up on this last year, and here at FDL we’ve already noted a number of restaurants going down the fire route. Gaston Acurio with Los Valientes, Mexican based Hartwoodand Russell Moore and Allison Hopelain's Californian restaurant, Caminoto name but a few.
See Gaston Acurio explain his restaurant in an interview with FDL:
2. Restaurants will pick up the slack on their green credentials and seek to actively "commit to low waste or sustainability." When they’re not cooking on fire they'll even start to think about cooking with sunshine.
The Villaseca Solar Restaurant (pictured below) is a restaurant in Chile that does just that cooking food using solar energy powered cookers.
Singing the Same Tune
3. Restaurants from 'San Francisco to Paris' and 'Singapore to Cape Town' will concentrate on doing one thing and doing it well. Matt mentions 'high end fast food' places in London eg just lobster three ways. FDL have reported on a number of chefs doing just that including, David Chang'sFuku serving fried chicken sandwiches, Daniel Patterson'sloco’l and Jose Andres'Beefsteak.
Back to Basics
4.It will become 'trendy' for restaurants to make their own cheese and charcuterie in house.
Central and South America
5. Weird and wonderful ingredients will continue to appear on the menu from Latin America. Have you heard of a 'lulo'? a cross between a mangosteen and a passionfruit which still has to be explored amongst many others.
Eats Shoots and Leaves
6. Chefs in high end restaurants will continue to develop a love of land-based leaves. Chefs have been experimenting with a wide variety of leaves including Heston Blumenthal who had exclusive access to local 'oyster leaf' when the Fat Duck was open in Melbourne. Purslane is set to be big in the US in both markets and restaurants.
Ramping up on Roe
7. Matt has noticed roe cropping up on any number of menus around the world including; ‘fresh, smoked or dried and being used for sauces or as garnish.’ Making special mention of “Golden bottarga on fresh tomatoes and sea urchin under avocado on toast" as two "stunning examples.”
Let us know if you have picked up on any these predictions and keep your eyes peeled for any more weird and wonderful food trends for 2016.
Go to The Daily Telegraph for the full article including more about ramen, plates and the extension of paddock to plate.
Staff shortages are hitting the hospitality sector hard, prompting some restaurants to look outside the industry to train those without restaurant experience for life in the kitchen. Andrew Friedman finds out more.