I recently read over a USA Today article that talks about food trends for 2012 — I actually wasn’t at all that surprised about the selection that was made. For anyone who is living in a city and you’re surrounded by food trends whether you want to be or not, you know what the newest fads are.
It wasn’t all that long ago that cupcakes captivated our attention… Cupcake bakeries were opening on every other corner like Starbuck’s cafes. From Baked By Melissa here in New York City as well as Magnolia Bakery and of course Billy’s — to Georgetown Cupcakes in Washington, D.C., people were seeing these mini-cakes every where! Even Sex and the City (the episodes, not the movie) had Carrie and Mirada chatting outside of Magnolia Bakery in the New York City’s hip and trendy West Village neighborhood.
Then came the popsicle shops and stands. And this food fad came at the most perfect time — right at the start of an insanely hot and almost unbearable summer in 2010. But who wants popsicles in the middle of winter? Plus, you can’t box up a half dozen pops to take into the office for a co-worker’s birthday. So, popsicles had a shorter life-span than cupcakes. And even though everyone will love cupcakes for generations to come, the popularity of going out with a friend for just a cupcake won’t last too much longer. Actually, it’s not even on the radar for popularity any more. And these things are not only costing your wallet a good chunk of money, but they are insanely fattening. I do admire the idea that the cupcake shop Baked By Melissa has. They make insanely small, bite-sized cupcakes. I actually was at an event recently and these little cupcakes graced our tables for dessert — if a large cupcake came my way, I doubt I would have eaten it. Cupcakes actually get pretty messy, they get all over the place, they crumble after you take a bite, and there is not lady-like way to dig into a cupcake the size of your fist. So these petite-chic treats were the perfect touch to the dessert table.
So, a new food trend according to USA Today is salt. Yes, salt. I’ve been chatting on and on for a year now about my favorite salt shop in the West Village called The Meadow. I love that an entire shop is dedicated to selling only the finest salts from all around the world. Not only are they beautifully colored, they also provide your food with an outrageous amount of flavor! Whether you are sprinkling a bit of salt into a dish, or actually cooking your food on a block of pink Himalayan salt, you are guaranteed to love whatever food it is you are making. Even a new hidden gem in the Chelsea Market called the Filling Station is selling a nice selection of salts — but in all honest, head to The Meadow for a wider range of this seasoning.
Food trucks are another food trend for 2012, but I had thought that these mobile “restaurants” were already winning over people’s attention? The Food Network has already had 2 seasons of The Great Food Truck Race (and I’ll admit, I’m hooked). Maybe food trucks have won over the hearts of city dwellers but now they are off to captivate the rest of America’s suburban inhabitants. We will see.
What other trends are there? “Drugstores as food stores,” is one of them. Well, duh. CVS has all of a sudden added grocery-like items to their store, as well as Duane Reade in NYC… and would anyone ever consider Walmart as a semi-drugstore as well as Target? Because for so long these two stores didn’t exactly have the “mega store” label. Americans just love that one-stop-shop sort of store where they can purchase everything at once. So, naturally brands like Target and Walmart are going to have to make this possible.
Other trends include: Mindful Snacks, Pickles, Butcher Shops, DYI Food, Gluten-Free Food (even if you don’t have a gluten allergy), Seaweed (for lunch!), Quick Response codes on food packaging, Artisan Chocolate, and finally — Korean food.
What other possible food trends are there going to be? I’d love to hear what everyone out there is thinking because you just never seem to know these days where and when a new trend is going to launch.