April 23, 2012

The fashion of food: the latest on food trends

The fashion of food: the latest on food trends

I recently attended the 34th International Association of Culinary Professionals’s (IACP) annual meeting, where culinary icons including Jaques Pepin and Amanda Hesser and working professionals came together to share, learn, and be inspired. This year’s meeting took place in New York City, and as such, the organizers chose The Fashion of Food as the theme. Shoes and food? I was so there.

There were over 75 sessions ranging from the philosophical (When do fashion and food trends become fad?) to the practical (how to pitch editors). I was also a speaker on a panel entitled, “Marketers and Bloggers: How to Create Rewarding Alliances.” (I'm the blogger for the National Pork Board's site, Pork, Knife & Spoon, and I'm their social media specialist at @PorkandKnife, and I also blog at Food Blogga.)

There was a lot of talk about what's fashionable in food and what's trendy, but here are a few of the tastiest morsels for you to chew on:

  • You think color-block and flower-power prints are hot? Not as hot as kale. It's the must-have item of vegetables right now. You'll find kale chips, salads, soups, and more at hip restaurants across the country. I believe I heard it mentioned in six different IACP panels. One speaker even quipped, “I wonder when Kale, the Book is coming out?”
  • Unlike the waistlines of runway models, dietary restrictions continue to expand — gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, corn free. Food distributors and chefs who can provide delicious alternatives to people with allergies will not only benefit financially but will also gain the loyalty of shoppers and diners.
  • Cupcakes haven’t died yet. But there’s hope.
  • Quinoa and farro are part of our culinary lexicon now. (If you know someone who still pronounces it 'kwi-NO-ah,' it's OK to correct him.)
  • Like Adele's eyeliner, dramatic, creative vegetarian dishes are in demand. Forget grilled portobello sandwiches and spinach salad; we want red quinoa, purple kale, gold beets, fiddleheads and other vibrant foods.
  • Game dishes (antelope, wild boar, bison) and vegan dishes are both on the rise, but like Republicans and Democrats, they shouldn't be placed at the same table.
  • Freelance food writing unfortunately remains an over-saturated, under-paid field. (Ruth Reichl confirmed this.)###liChef Marcus Samuelsson, America is still "the trendiest place in the world." Hot diggity dog!
  • Ramen noodles are on fire! I'm so over ramen noodles! Choose your exclamatory statement based upon your geographic location. Hint: New Yorkers have already moved on. (They're so painfully hip.)
  • New York Times food writer, Kim Severson, is the Ellen Degeneres of the culinary world and should have her own TV show.
  • Some foods, including petite macarons are no longer the super models of desserts. Pie tried valiantly to take macaron’s spot, but the humble confection couldn’t pull it off. French cannelles are getting a lot of press among the fashionistas of food but still haven’t caught the public’s imagination.
  • Smoky, studly mezcal is encroaching upon tequila's hallowed territory.
  • Everyone still loves bacon.

Photo credit: AK Photography, FFC.

Tags: Food, Trends

About the Author

PlainClarity Admin

PlainClarity Admin

PlainClarity is a top San Diego-based PR firm that garners success for clients through uncommon connections and authentic interactions. We’re storytellers and connectors. We connect brands with those who will love and support them. Our services include media/public relations, marketing, events, web design and development, strategy and social media for industries including luxury lifestyle, hospitality, tech and health & beauty.