1.Food and beverage trends
need to be at the forefront of your thoughts if you want to throw a cutting-edge, prosperous event in 2023.
A fantastic menu, including vegan alternatives and traditional foods with a contemporary spin, is essential to creating a memorable event experience.
Since Eventlock has worked with experienced event planners for more than ten years, it has the knowledge to communicate how current food and beverage trends are shifting.
Here, we’ll look at the newest food and beverage trends for event planners in 2023 (yeah, they’ve changed quite a bit from the trends in 2022! ), and we’ll also show you how business event planners may use these trends in their events.
Let’s look at it.
A barman at Mercadito Sunday at the Alton Food Hall in Miami Beach, Florida 1. Food courts are expanding.
A food hall is a fantastic way to provide attendees at your event the opportunity to sample various cuisines and flavours without having to leave the venue. Due to consumers’ need for convenience and variety, this trend is becoming more and more popular. Visitors to food halls may choose from a selection of merchants serving a wide array of delectable cuisine.
According to restaurant consulting company Baum and Whiteman, the food hall trend will take an intriguing new turn in 2023 as food halls develop into hubs for a wider range of consumer social activities. Food halls will provide more diverse entertainment alternatives in addition to planned events that are focused on food halls.
Alton Food Hall’s Mercadito Sunday is one instance of this pattern. Every day of the week, Alton cuisine Hall provides inhabitants of Miami Beach with scrumptious, various cuisine alternatives. However, on Sundays, guests may also purchase handmade goods from nearby craftsmen as they enjoy a meal.
Visitors get the chance to explore their local scene and learn about new musicians, goods, and delicacies during gatherings like the Mercadito Sunday.
Food halls are becoming into a vital component of several communities. They may serve as centres for social interaction and cultural inquiry in addition to serving as places to have lunch.
Tip for event planners:
To make the most of the food hall structure, think about setting up a string of unique occasions. These may be workshops, culinary lessons, live performances, tastings, art exhibits, or anything else that would provide guests a unique experience and entice them to return time and time again. To make your events even more memorable, think about forming partnerships with nearby companies or creatives.
While the popularity of mushrooms has been increasing for some time, less typical mushroom species are also becoming increasingly prevalent. Many people like them as a lean meat substitute, and they’re even grabbing media attention as key components in haute cuisine.
The Mushroom Council counted twelve instances of reputable culinary periodicals mentioning mushrooms’ rising popularity in 2023. Many of them, including Datassential, mentioned less known mushroom kinds that would gain appeal, such lion’s mane. Even Morton Williams Supermarkets recognised the increase in popularity of oyster mushrooms.
What makes mushrooms so well-liked? Their distinctive savoury flavour profile makes them quite flexible and a fantastic culinary option for a variety of meals, from meat alternatives to mushroom coffee. Due to their purported health advantages as adaptogens and their regenerating antioxidant content, mushrooms are also a trendy issue. Although technically fungus rather than a plant-based cuisine, mushrooms are nonetheless a favourite among vegetarians.
A lot of the commotion has given rise to intriguing mushroom-themed events. Even a Food Trends presentation was held by the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) to explore the growing popularity of cooking with mushrooms.
Before teaching your guests how to prepare mushrooms, think about organising a foraging trip. To prevent picking up anything that isn’t edible, just make sure everyone is guided and taught by a mushroom specialist.
3. A limited vegetarian diet
Although the popularity of vegetarianism has increased significantly in recent years, other closely comparable diets are also gaining acceptance. In the last 30 years, the percentage of Americans who practise vegetarianism and veganism has quadrupled. They aren’t the only population with an increasing diet, however.
Some of the most well-liked vegetarian diets include:
Unlike vegetarians, who strive to maintain a strict vegetarian diet, reducetarians adopt a more relaxed approach, cutting down on their consumption of dairy and meat but keeping these items in their diets in moderation.
Pescatarians: Named after the Greek word for fish, pescatarians only consume fish and other aquatic life. Since they also eat eggs, many are officially ovo-pescetarians.
Reducetarians make an attempt to consume less animal products, while flexitarians are more like vegetarians who sometimes eat meat and fish.
Many individuals lack the skills necessary to produce enticing, nutritious vegetarian cuisine. Because of this, learning how to create meals without using animal products is a popular genre for vegetarian-themed events. Because of this, Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street presented a course on using spices with vegetarian cuisine.
In the summer of 2023, 69% of guests will be on the lookout for events that provide memorable and transforming experiences. Offering omnivores the option to make a significant shift in their life that they could appreciate is a wonderful method to encourage partial vegetarianism. Just make sure that everyone can attend your activities.
4. restaurants with full automation
It turns out that automation isn’t only for conversation and art design. Food is being delivered to people in novel and interesting ways thanks to this innovative new technology. Two completely automated locations of the well-known salad chain Sweetgreen are already open, and maybe more will soon do the same.
It’s interesting to note that approximately a third of event planners and attendees are introverts; thus, automated restaurants may be useful in attracting this group of people. Of course, not all introverts are timid, but by limiting social contact with strangers (like employees), a gathering in an automated restaurant might capitalise on a fashionable trend while also providing for the needs of introverted participants.
With software firms like Computools holding a learning session on hospitality automation, some event planners have already jumped on the bandwagon. Understanding the benefits of restaurant automation starts with incidents like these. The next stage may be having your own event in an automated restaurant!
Event planning advice: If there aren’t any completely automated restaurants close by, think about showing visitors a piece of automation technology. A display of devices like the robot that flips hamburgers for White Castle would make your event stand out.
5.Person guacamole-dipping a corn chip
Spark Social SF/Avocado Con in San Francisco, California 5. Food is becoming hotter.
In the US, spicy cuisine is quite well-liked. According to an Instacart poll, 74% of Americans use spicy sauce. Spicy cuisine may have a variety of flavours, from moderate to burning your tongue off, and is becoming more and more well-liked by all types of eaters. But beyond that, 2023 in particular is experiencing a wider cultural moment for spicy cuisine.
Sales of hot, salty snacks have risen 12% over the last four years, and their popularity is rising quickly. Events centred on consuming spicy cuisine are expanding at the same time. This indicates that individuals are becoming increasingly inventive with how they use spicy spices into various activities.
Some events with a spicy theme make sense. The art of making your own spicy sauce is taught in workshops by chefs like Fraser Fitzgerald. For those who like to experience the heat rather than merely cause it, these gatherings sometimes include a hot sauce tasting session.
While some exhibit even more creativity. Shakespeare’s most well-known play, Hot Pepper Hamlet, is presented by the Museum of Old Newbury with a special twist: before each performance, the performers consume a hot pepper. The enormous spectrum of innovation made possible by the expanding popularity of spicy cuisine is highlighted by events like Hot Pepper Hamlet.
Don’t assume that everyone will be able to handle the same level of heat if you plan an event that has spicy cuisine. There are considerable disparities in tolerance even among pepper enthusiasts. You must thus be prepared to accommodate a variety of tastes.
6. Exclusive eating venues
For individuals seeking a distinctive eating experience, private dining clubs are rising in popularity. These clubs’ costs might range greatly. However, they offer the same promise regardless of whether there is a $250,000 membership price in London or a $165 cost in Portland: exclusive access to lavish meals and networking opportunities with like-minded people.
Private dining clubs sometimes offer special occasions when non-members are welcome to attend and have a taste of the good life. That is what Czen’s exclusive dinner experiences provide. The cost of a one-time private dinner experience at this event is (relatively) affordable.
Tip for event planners: Make this trend approachable to a larger audience to capitalise on it. For a more accessible dining experience, hire a chef who has expertise working for a private dining club to prepare meals for a greater number of visitors.
7. Alcohol substitutes
There are many more beverages available than just alcohol and soda. According to market research company WGSN, a range of non-alcoholic beverages are revolutionising the beverage business, particularly among Gen Z. This opens up a whole new universe of opportunities for event planners.
Offering mocktails and other non-alcoholic drinks alongside alcoholic ones is becoming an increasingly popular choice. Offering mocktails not only allows people who don’t drink additional alternatives, but it also gives your event a more upscale feel that can draw in more attendees.
But other individuals are also experimenting with non-alcohol beverages that have psychedelic effects. Cannabis-infused drinks are more well-liked than ever, with a market worth roughly $1 billion predicted to increase by more than 50% by 2028.
Some event planners are going even farther by introducing novel items and beverage experiences to their audience. A mixture of kava extract, damiana extract, and green tea was made available at The Official Afterparty with The Orchestrator, a musical performance from Colorado.
Alternatives to alcohol are a terrific way to expand your audience for your event. The easiest method to maintain that trend is to have a broad selection of beverages so that customers may be certain to find a drink they like.
In addition to these bigger trends, microtrends may develop at any time and go just as swiftly. Utilise these microtrends by immediately shifting your focus to activities that make the most of current culinary trends.
Microtrends may be sparked by any otherwise forgotten element of popular culture, and they are difficult to forecast. For instance, when the House of the Dragon actors Emma D’Arcy and Olivia Cook discussed their love of negronis in an interview, they explicitly mentioned “a Negroni Sbagliato… with prosecco in it.”
The Ahrefs page for the keywords “Negroni Sbagliato” as shown in a screenshot.
According to data by Eventbrite, the number of searches for “Negroni Sbagliato” increased from 2,000 per month to approximately 500,000. A Negroni Sbagliato tasting was arranged by resourceful event planners at the Wine Press only a few weeks afterwards. It’s fortunate that they responded so fast since a few months later, this microtrend fell to less than 20,000 searches every month.
Event planning advice: At the very least, keep an eye out for new trends and be prepared to act quickly when they do. But being able to arrange an event fast is not always sufficient.
Additionally, you must spread the news about it as soon as possible. If you want to hold an event while the microtrend is still popular, consider utilising a professional event marketing tool like Eventlocks to rapidly set up your event page and begin selling tickets.
How to stay current with developments in the food and beverage business
It’s important to be alert, respond swiftly, and understand how to sell your events in accordance with the current cultural moment if you want to stay on top of current food and beverage trends.
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