Happy holidays everyone and welcome to this holiday edition of Table-loids. I’ve got quite the list of news, advice and trends to share with you this week. So sit back and take a break from the holiday madness to learn a thing or two about a thing or two.
1. Google this!
Google released their list of the 10 most searched foods of 2018 and I have to say I wasn’t too surprised by the winners. The magical “unicorn cake” took the top spot and I’m assuming this has to do with thousands of frazzled parents trying to figure out what the heck their 12-year-old is asking for as her choice of birthday dessert. Number two won’t surprise anyone who didn’t live under a rock in 2018: Romaine lettuce. I’m pretty sure I Googled it about 10 times to figure out if I could, in fact, order the chicken Caesar salad I was desperately craving. Another “duh” would be that number three on the list went to CBD gummies. Let’s be honest, life is stressful, especially when you’re trying to bake a unicorn cake and avoid lettuce, and now that CBD is legal in 33 states, who doesn’t want to partake in these relaxing treats? You can check out the full list of Google’s most searched foods of 2018 here. And if you’re into interesting comparisons, check out the differences between Google’s list and the one released by Pinterest.
2. An audit you can get down with
On the Rail this week, they’re discussing the benefits of doing a “tabletop audit” at your venue. Improving your restaurant’s tablescape can be good for business, and what better time to do one than at the end of the year? Each tabletop is blessed with very little real estate, and the Rail suggests you take inventory of every item within that real estate and evaluate whether or not each piece really enhances your diners’ experience or just takes up valuable space. When you’re done, your tables should only possess the items that you feel are essential. The other items can be brought to the table during service if needed. There’s nothing worse than sitting down at an overly crowded restaurant table. Take advantage of the few slow weeks after the new year and upgrade your tablescape.
3. Finally — a New Year’s Eve you can remember!
How many of you have made the mistake of drinking a tad (or a lot) too much during Christmas or New Year’s Eve? I’d expect about 90% of you to raise your hands … the rest are lying. Well, there’s good news for you holiday imbibers out there. According to National Restaurant News, bartenders are making the switch to less potent cocktails in the new year. I’ve talked about the popularity of low ABV cocktails for quite a while now, and it seems the trend is gaining even more speed. The fear that cocktails containing a lesser amount of alcohol will be less enticing to customers is a thing of the past. Bartenders are embracing cordials and creating super interesting mixes that taste good and leave you wanting and, more importantly, able to enjoy more. So sit back, relax and have that second drink. Enjoy the holidays and still remember them.
4. Alerting the masses
It goes without saying that the holiday season is a great time to update your dinner menu or add on a new private event menu, but how do you go about alerting the masses? Well the Rail’s got you covered with another valuable article outlining ways in which you can successfully market your new special events or seasonal menu. The post talks about everything from social media to newsletters and even how to generate more interest in both of these outlets. A few smart snippets include remembering to appeal to your guests’ perspective and creating a sense of urgency and FOMO so your guests don’t just want to attend your special event, they have to.
5. How did we survive 2018?
Last on my list this week is a top-list from Eater. This one is a little different than most top lists as it’s a top-list that could have killed you. Eater released its roll call of the most impactful foods that tried to kill us in 2018. I have to say that there were the ones you’d expect like lettuce, ground beef and Chipotle (again) but there were others that I was surprised to see like cake mix and Whole Foods’ salad bar. How could a $35 salad kill you?? Needless to say, I’m glad I survived the plague of 2018 foodborne illnesses and hey, 2019 can’t be any worse, right?!
Interested in more trends?
Check out Tripleseat’s posts on trends and information for the event industry.