As restauranteurs, we are always keeping our eye on the ever changing restaurant industry to identify new trends in the marketplace. As so many of us do at this time of year, we like to take stock of the current year and look ahead to the new year and see where we stand, if we should make any changes, or if there are any fun new ideas that might work well for our guests. Plus, Father Fud is a bit of a foodie, and he likes to find new ideas that we can incorporate into our menu. You might say he has a bit of “Restless Palate Syndrome”. Which brings us to our first trend for 2015…
1. Restless Palate Syndrome- We first read about this trend in Baum & Whiteman’s International Food and Restaurant Consultants whitepaper (linked to above), and it really does fit! At Fudpucker’s we are always changing our menu and introducing new flavors that help us stand apart from other restaurants. From fried alligator tail to sweet thai chili dipping sauce to our signature burgers, which are basted with soy sauce, worcesterhire, honey and garlic then topped with a sauce made from mayo, creole mustard, and honey, then spread with garlic and onion. Yum! I wonder what Father Fud will come up with next…
2. Sharable Mixed Drinks– Large alcoholic concoctions with multiple straws made for sharing with the masses (or at least your table of friends and family) are on the upswing. We hear the big “fishbowl” drinks are on the rise in popularity. Here at Fudpucker’s we offer several large sharable alcoholic creations: our big blue margarita, voodoo magic, and the Coronarita. Our “Big Blue” is an incredible 48 oz concoction featuring lots of tequila, sour mix, and Blue Curaco served in a giant martini glass. The Voo Doo Magic is Father Fud’s newest concoction featuring 4 Cruzan Rums – Pineapple, Banana, Coconut and Mango with Cranberry, Orange and Pineapple juice. Served in a 32 oz. bucket that you get to keep! Finally, our Coronarita, which actually manages to touch on 2 different trends: the sharable drink trend and restless palate syndrome, because it pushes the limits by combining beer and liquor into one 40oz sharable top shelf margarita. These drinks are typically known as Micheladas, and we hear they are going to be a big trend this year as well!
3. Tech- Not surprisingly, tech is a big trend in the restaurant industry this year. As all of our lives depend more and more on computers and technology and with the rise of handheld devices such tablets and cell phones, more and more businesses are looking to tech solutions, and the restaurant industry is no different. Here at Fudpucker’s when we are on a wait, we can text you when your table is ready. You can also use our wifi and even play games on your handheld device while you wait for your table.
4. Healthy options- Entrepeneur magazine says that the trend towards eating healthier will continue into 2015, as will the rise of customers with personalized diets. Fudpucker’s has several gluten free and vegetarian dishes on our menu and we can also accommodate special vegetarian requests as well.
5. Locavores- The ‘shop local’ movement has moved into food as more and more customers seek to eat fresh or regionally prepared food. This is bad news for chain restaurants and good news for those of us who are locally owned and operated! At Fudpucker’s restaurants, many of our dishes feature gulf seafood and we also offer a fresh catch for those looking for regionally-caught fish as well.
What restaurant trends do YOU think we’ll see in 2015?