November always brings the foodie forecasts for the year ahead, and this week we got the annual detailed predictions from Baum + Whiteman and Andrew Freeman & Co. Topping both lists was the subject of chicken, with different takes on the poultry’s projected popularity next year.
Baum + Whiteman predicts chicken will continue to gain a higher profile in premium dishes, a point-of-view that conforms with conventional wisdom as eateries look to gain an edge with fancy new chicken dishes while also taking advantage of falling chicken prices. The largest ever U.S. corn harvest spurred production at poultry farms, Bloomberg reported this week, driving decreases in chicken prices after drought-driven increases last year. Meanwhile, beef prices remain high after last year’s drought decimated herds, and higher beef prices are likely also driving more consumers to choose chicken instead.
The Baum + Whiteman forecast highlights chicken innovation across the board, from Thai chili and grilled piri piri wings with cilantro garlic sauce at Chick-a-Biddy in Atlanta to the $79 roast chicken with foie gras for two at New York City’s Nomad.
Meanwhile, Andrew Freeman’s forecast goes even further in its prediction. In fact, it goes all the way past chicken — the most adventurous eateries are leaving the “safe” chicken option off the menu, the report says, citing the menu at Atlanta’s Empire State South which features dishes starring pork belly, goat and catfish.
Speaking of fish, anchovies are breaking away from the Caesar salad and showing up on Nicoise salads, fresh mozzarella and atop pasta, Baum + Whiteman notes. Even more surprising, oily “fishy fish” including mackerel and sardines are proving popular with modern palates.
In their efforts to be more sustainable when it comes to seafood, chefs are exploring innovative ways to use more of the ocean’s bounty, from sea beans to fish cheeks, Andrew Freeman’s report says.
Also hot on Baum + Whiteman’s list
- Creative spreads that take the place of dipping oil
- Healthier options to please all palates
- A new generation of Asian flavors including gochujang, Shichimi togarashi and Parilla
- A wider array of Middle Eastern flavors including the cuisines of Turkey, Israel, Morocco, Iraq and Iran
More from Andrew Freeman & Co.
- Cobb salads are edging out the Caesar
- Upscale comfort foods like Peanut Butter Panna Cotta with Berry Jam are on the rise
- Ice cream sandwiches are the new cupcake
- Avocado, hazlenut and benne seed oils are gaining favor for cooking and finishing
What’s going to be the hottest new dish on your menu next year? Tell us about it in the comments.