Below is a an extract from www.epicurious.com with regards to the food trend for 2009. Further on is my take for the same tune but the localized version.
Epicurious Predicts Top 10 Food Trends for 2009
by James Oliver Cury
With the dawn of a new presidency, a deepening recession, and a fine-dining culinary culture that sometimes veers into the impossibly surreal, soberness is setting into the food world. Gone are the behemoth restaurants, $1,000 omelets, and ice cream made of dehydrated chile flakes. Hallmarks of 2009 will include a return to families cooking together and eating at home more than they have in decades, a premium on high-quality, seasonal ingredients that provide good value, and an emphasis on simple food for the people, by the people.
1. "Value" is the new "Sustainable"These days, the economy dictates our cooking and shopping decisions: Bargains are in, no matter where they come from.
2. The Compost Pile is the new Flower GardenGrowing your own now refers to vegetables, not just herbs, and that will in turn help feed the gardener's compost pile. Live worm garnishes, however, will not make it to the house salad.
3. Peruvian is the new Thai You thought Peruvian cuisine was all about seviche, maybe? Guess again: Peru boasts culinary influences from Spanish, Basque, African, Chinese, Japanese, Italian, French, and British immigrants. Pisco Sour, anyone?
4. Noodle Bars are the new Sushi JointsWith some seafood being suspect or overfished and raw fish prices high, noodles make complete sense. If there's no ramen, udon, or soba shop in your neck of the woods, there will be soon.
5. Ginger is the new MintMove over, mojitos. Ginger beers and ginger cocktails (like the Ginger Rogers, Gin Gin Mule, and Ginger Smash) are bubbling up at places like The Violet Hour in Chicago, the Clock Bar in San Francisco, and Matsugen in New York.
6. Smoking is the new FryingYou know how everything tastes better fried? Well, almost everything tastes better smoked, too, and that includes cocktails. Bartenders are smoking their bourbons (Eben Freeman at Tailor, for example), and chefs, recognizing the national craze for BBQ, are smoking more than just salmon and ribs: nuts, salts, even smoked steelhead roe (at Chicago's Alinea). Who says smoking's bad for you?
7. Regional Roasters are the new StarbucksIt's come full circle. What started as a local coffee phenomenon migrated to other cities and turned Americans into java junkies. Then the chain overexpanded and overreached, and the little neighborhood coffee roasters thrive again, like Stumptown (Portland, OR), Bluebottle (San Francisco), and La Colombe (Philly).
8. Portland (Maine) is the new Portland (Oregon)Abundance of great chefs, restaurants, and local foodies? Check, check, and check. Want examples? Visit Five Fifty-Five, Hugo's, and Fore Street to start.
9. Rustic Food is the new Molecular Gastronomy Wacky-weird-science cuisine that requires fancy-schmancy equipment doesn't necessarily make food taste better, and more often than not it adds needless complexity (there are exceptions). Most importantly, no one really wants to do this at home. Expect to see comfort food stage a comeback. Again.
10. "Top-Rated" is the new "Critic's Pick"Power to the people; single critics are a dying breed. Why believe what one person says when you can read and reflect on what hundreds think? Don't believe us? Feel free to comment below!
The top 10 trends for the home cook and the restaurant-goer for the average Singaporean in 2009.
By Chef Eric Low
We do not have a new incoming PM. Molecular Gastronomy in the local culinary scene is almost on the verge of biting the dust. Our local MG maverick Chef Edward Voon has quit Aurum and gone back to the kitchens of the Tower Club. There might be some possibilities of a $100 omelette featuring a “mountain” of white truffle shavings in some die hard fine dinning restaurants here. With so many new ice cream parlours touting home made, self brewed, artisan designed ice creams, we may eventually see a sambal chilli hay bee hiam flavour. Hallmarks of 2009 will include a return to families cooking together, making a huge mess in the process and leaving all the wash up to the maid forcing her to sleep only at 1am. Singaporeans will be eating at home more than they have in decades, thanks to more ERP, higher transport costs and still having to pay service charges for lousy service. Hopefully our people will also understand that there is no such thing as cheap and good when it comes to food and be expected to pay a premium on high-quality, seasonal ingredients that provide good value, and just stay focus with regards to emphasis on simple food with quality ingredients.
1. "Value" is the new "Sustainable". These days, the economy dictates our cooking and shopping decisions: Bargains are in, no matter where they come from. Same as in SG. Sheng Siong will continue to be the number one supermarket choice of most Singaporeans offering much more in variety although prices are no longer that cheap as before. Fairprice may have more outlets but everything is so limited and standard that it never offers anything new and exciting to discover.
2. The Compost Pile is the new Flower Garden. Given that about 70% of Singaporeans live in HDB, it is almost impossible to grow your own vegetables even in the balcony if u are lucky enough to have one. With Singaporeans struggling to keep their jobs in this dire economy, growing vegetables is not one of the options for recreational activities. However to be eco friendly, the government continues to encourage all citizens to drink Newwater distributed for free in grassroots, charity and lousy budgeted events.
3. Spanish is the new Italian, Pasta to make way for Paella….. Yes Spanish cuisine is trickling in, although we need much more help from AVA to allow more Spanish produce and products to come in at more decent price levels. We love to have beyond Serrano Ham, smoked paprika, chorizos, padron peppers, mojitos, calbrese cheese, manchego cheese, sherry wine, mallorca almonds……
4. Gourmet Pasta Piazzas are the new Sushi JointsWe have too much local noodles as in hawker stalls around. We already have artisan ramen, udon, or soba shops, now we badly need places where u can get pasta in your neighbourhood hawker centers cooked the real Italian way and not some modified localized version.We like it to be “Al Dente” and not drowning in too much diluted sauce. Hopefully there will be soon when more retrenched chefs turn entrepreneurs.
5. Basil and Saw Leaf is the new Mint. We have been drinking Teh Halia for donkey years, ginger is nothing new and exciting for us. But much as we are in the box, we should get out and start exploring other tropical flavour bursting herbs beyond what we already know as in coriander and spring onions. Basil is the in-coming thing for cocktails and saw leaf is added to local salads in place of coriander.
6. Smoking is the new Frying. We still like our goreng pisang and Yew Char Kway when we eat out of home. Yes, healthier choice label products should be one of our choices when we shop or eat. Call us hypocrites if u care, however at the end of the day, the message is that taste is still important and food businesses should know that by getting a healthier choice label on your product does not mean u will have the best selling product on hand. As on smoked foods, of course we love BBQ Sauce, Sausages and Bacon. We can’t smoke our foods at home but we love to try anything that is smoked as long as it is given out free in supermarkets, food shows and cooking workshops by chefs.
7. Ya Kun and Killiney are still the new Starbucks. It's come full circle. What started as a local coffee phenomenon migrated to other countries and turned their citizens into kaya junkies. With the economic crunch, people are down sizing and opting for better value options. About five bucks at Yakun or Killiney gets u two toasts, a pair of soft boiled eggs and coffee far more nutritious and value than just one medium frappucino at Starbucks.
8. Bukit Timah (Old Fire Station) is the new Bukit Timah (Greenwood Ave). Vacated post colonial properties usually end up as new business opportunities for great chefs to start new restaurants, and local foodies will continue to have an endless choice of restaurants serving the same Chilean seabass (codfish), Wagyu Beef and Kurobuta Pork Belly….usually ending with tiramisu or a molten lava chocolate cake.
9. Rustic Food is the new Molecular Gastronomy Can’t agree more on this. Who wants to eat Nasi Lemak out of a test tube? Or to have your delicious roast beef turned into a morsel of ice cream that doesn’t give the satisfaction of beefy meatiness. Most importantly, no one really wants to pay through the nose again and again for a 13 course menu sitting on a wheel chair in some operating theatre set up with a reference taken from SGH. Plus the feeling that it was some weird scientist trying to feed u instead of a chef. Expect to see chicken curry and kong bak pau stage a comeback again.
10. "Top-Rated" is the new "Critic's Pick"Power to the people; Yes we all agree on this. Why believe what one person says when you can read and reflect on what hundreds think? It is even worse when the one person who is suppose to do a professional commenting is not a qualified F&B professional in any field, no F&B job experience to relate to and does not really know what is called the interest of fairness in restaurant review. eg. Doing a write up on a new establishment within two weeks of opening or soliciting for free food based on the excuse of writing a publicity review. Trust me, we the F&B professionals know who the guilty parties are. Don't believe us? Feel free to comment below!