Opinions

We Predict 2015’s Biggest Food Trends

January 12, 2015

2014 was the year of local ingredients, third-wave coffee, and the degustation menu. With more people eating out in the Philippines than ever, our dining scene is growing complex, and the Filipino diner has a palate and curiosity that is more discerning. With an entirely different consumer in mind, how are restaurateurs and chefs tackling the new culinary landscape—and what trends are they going to pursue this year? We make our own predictions:

1. Nose-to-Tail

2015 Trend Predictions1

Why it will be big:

While Filipinos have been eating nose-to-tail for a very long time, offal in a restaurant setting here in Manila has only been gaining more traction recently. Using the whole pig, cow, or whatever delicious animal you can get your hands on is every chef’s dream, as they churn out the most flavor.

Where to get it:

Restaurants are creating their own terrines and charcuteries left and right, with Green Pastures making a mean head cheese. Linguini Fini advocates this practice in most of their menu, with a nose-to-tail pappardelle, and El Chupacabra’s Anticuchos section serves up everything from the heart to the gizzard to the liver.

2. Vegetarian/Vegan

2015 Trend Predictions2

Why it will be big:

We’ve seen a lot of local and organic spots lately, but none have gone the totally vegetarian or vegan route. The healthy living and eating lifestyle has turned into a full-fledged campaign for wellness, and with the success of juicing businesses and places like JUJU Eats, it’s about time that vegetarian and vegan restaurants started popping up more often.

Where to get it:

Susi, by Bianca Mabanta, is looking to change people’s perceptions about healthy food being less than tasty. Opening in Burgos Circle, they’re embracing everything from raw vegan, to vegan, to gluten-free. Home baker The Little Spatula is churning out incredibly delicious treats such as their whole-grain, low-fat London Lemon Loaf. Old-school staples include The Corner Tree Cafe, Wabi-Sabi, and Edgy Veggy.

3. Foreign Imports

2015 Trend Predictions3

Why it will be big:

Everyone loves a good import—there’s nostalgia attached to a restaurant you once visited or frequented in your childhood, and there’s a sense of excitement in trying out something new and popular that’s made it big abroad. Let’s face it, as much as we love our homegrown cuisine and restaurants, we have a soft spot for anything foreign.

Where to get it:

Loads of restaurants have been confirmed for 2015, turning Manila into an eating haven that will rival other metropolitan cities in Southeast Asia. The confirmed Ladurée rumors, and Pink’s opening have gotten everyone excited, and even Michelin-starred chef Davide Oldani is opening his doors on our shores.

4. Revival of Secret Spots (hidden bars and restaurants)

2015-Trend-Predictions4

Why it will be big:

People love secrets, which is why hidden bars and restaurants are such a big deal. Clandestine and hidden, these spots are the modern hole-in-the-wall, and all the allure is in the bragging rights that come with exclusivity.

Where to get it:

Ocean Telephone Company is literally hidden inside a restaurant, and Erwan Heussaff’s Red Light is the sort of bar that only industry people will hear about. When it comes to food, Tambai, a notably hip yakitori joint, will probably achieve the same cult status as its neighbors in Burgos have.

5. Craft Alcohol and Local Liquors

2015-Trend-Predictions5

Why it will be big:

We saw a rise in craft cocktails last year, but Filipinos are taking their fascination with liquor to the next level. There are more craft beer enthusiasts in the metro, churning out excellent brews. The Department of Agriculture is pairing up with craft makers to expand our homegrown liquors to more than just lambanog; they started off with Manille Liqueur made with calamansi and Amadeo with coffee, and have started making a 100-proof liqueur from red rice that is due on the market in 2015.

Where to get it:

Try Manille Liqueur and Amadeo for some local flavor, but when it comes to craft beers, many small breweries are now taking all our attention. There’s Craftpoint, Katipunan, Fat Pauly’s, Bogs Brew, and Xavier Beer just to name a few, all with their own signature ales and IPAs.

6. Kouign Amann

2015-Trend-Predictions6

Why it will be big:

This addictive, crisp, sweet pastry is 2015’s answer to the cronut. Kouign amann started gaining a lot more attention last year, but we hope to see more iterations of this delight in 2015. Layers of impossibly thin dough curl around each other, making this a fun and messy treat to eat. Doused normally in syrup, it is at both times more delicate and decadent than its trendy predecessor.

Where to get it:

Chef Cyrille Soenen started it all when he served these up at his flagship restaurant Cicou, but he realized how valuable this pastry could be and set up a stand alone Kouign Amann by Cicou kiosk in SM Mega Fashion Hall, which includes even savory versions. Wildflour has one too, that is sugary deliciousness, and Clockwork near MOA offers one with a center filled with melted butter.

7. Uni

2015-Trend-Predictions7

Why it will be big:

Uni (at least in my opinion) is the luxury ingredient that deserves more attention than foie gras. The rich orange tongues serve up the same luxurious decadence, but with all the salt and brine of the sea. Even though it is still at best on its own, more restaurants have been using the ingredient to enhance Japanese-inspired dishes or to punctuate already rich dishes.

Where to get it:

If you’re looking for the high-end, unadulterated stuff, Japanese places like Tsukiji, Nodasho, Hanakazu, Kikufuji, all offer sea urchin on their menu. If you’re lucky, some of them fly their stock from Hokkaido in Japan. Local uni can be found in Farmer’s Market Cubao, and tupperwares of fresh but slightly frozen local wares are available at South Supermarket. Mecha Uma, Vask, and Impressions all have dishes that require a dollop of uni, if you’re looking to be more adventurous.

8. Macro Plates

2015-Trend-Predictions8

Why it will be big:

Make no mistake; this isn’t tapas, although the trend seems to have stemmed from there. While we are used to plates for one or even family platters, some restaurants have taken starter sizes to the mains for a shared experience. Macro plates are trendy because it allows you to eat for one, or order as much of the menu as you can without ever over-ordering. It’s a smart way of inviting people to try all a restaurant offers—and it looks good too.

Where to get it:

Namnam and Manam started the small size for one portions, but new restaurants CDP and 12/10 have made it all the rage. CDP, much improved since our review, lets you have global cuisine in bite-size pieces, and 12/10’s menu makes it easy for you to order your own type of omakase.

9. Specialized Restaurants

2015-Trend-Predictions9

Why it will be big:

Menus don’t always have to be long or overly-complicated, or try to cater to everyone’s taste. There are some restaurants who are now proving that if you’ve got a winning recipe, you can stick to it and specialize in the specifics.

Where to get it:

Vask’s new restaurant Arrozeria is dedicating its menu to the art of rice, churning out paellas, paellas in broths, and other Spanish arroz dishes. Farmacy‘s ice cream parlor is all about scoops of the sweet stuff, and Yushoken’s new joint in Salcedo, Mendokoro Ramenba, is trimming down their gyoza and chahan to make way for an all-ramen menu.

10. Take-aways

2015-Trend-Predictions10

Why it will be big:

Lunchtime is often the most boring meal of the day, especially when you’re stuck at the office. Your limited lunch hour often means you’ve got to bring some cold leftovers from home, or eat hurriedly in a fast food chain which doesn’t exactly bode well for your health. Although a few restaurants have started sending out tasty packed lunches, we hope to see more of this necessary service in 2015.

Where to get it:

Currently, only 2nd’s on Bonifacio High Street and Pink Panda by A Venue have made these packed lunches, but in the year to come, there might be a few more services in the mix.

Which trend do you think will make it big in 2015? Any other additions to the list above? Tell us your thoughts below!

Pamela Cortez Pamela Cortez

Pamela Cortez writes about food full-time, and has honed her craft while writing for publications such as Rogue, Town and Country, and The Philippine Star. She once rode on a mule for a mile just to eat mint tea and lamb in Morocco, and has eaten a block of Quickmelt in one sitting. Her attempt at food photography can be viewed online @meyarrr.

FOLLOW
3 comments in this post SHOW

3 responses to “We Predict 2015’s Biggest Food Trends”

  1. disqus_JOWg4WHjrL says:

    check Hungry Mouth’s fb page they’re located in Meycauayan City they are also in to packed lunches. also Cafe Nenzo in Esperanza Mall, Meycauayan 🙂

  2. […] no secret that us Pepper folks love uni. We’ve named it as one of our upcoming trends of this year, and believe in that foodie saying that it’s the ‘foie gras of the sea’ (but […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Keep on

Reading