For full-services properties, keeping up with the latest F&B trends is a key component of staying relevant and appealing to guests. LODGING spoke with chefs from two top hotel restaurants to hear about the trends that influenced F&B in 2016, as well as what is on the horizon for this year.
Konstantinos Chaidaropoulos, Chef de cuisine at Stetsons Modern Steak+Sushi, Hyatt Regency Chicago
What F&B trends influenced Stetsons’ menus this year? Hyatt Regency Chicago’s menus utilize the best nature has to offer. We use meats from local farms and locally sourced suppliers for fresh produce, which is natural, fresh, and organic. Seafood and shellfish are sustainable sourced from accredited suppliers, using methods respecting natural living. Our menus offer gluten free, vegetarian, and vegan options and our chefs accommodate any dietary restrictions. These trends addressed the guests’ concerns over what’s in their food, where it is sourced and produced; we listened and understood their needs. More and more, guests are demanding real food and uncompromising authentic ingredients.
What trends are you anticipating for 2017? Trends are always shaped by people’s needs, so we’re creating menus that will introduce choices such as breakfast bowls (both sweet and savory), upscale comfort food, modernizing the classic steakhouse specialties, and Eastern and Western elements combined with a traditional Japanese presentation.
Christian Bravo, Executive chef of Cueva Siete, UNICO Hotel Riviera Maya
What F&B trends influenced Cueva Siete’s menu this year? People want to experience local flavors. While creating the menu for UNICO’s rotating chef restaurant, Cueva Siete, I was deeply inspired to tell the story behind the food. The locally sourced menu gives me the opportunity to showcase a unique way of life, cooking methods, and products of the Yucatan peninsula. Now more than ever, people want their experience to be interwoven with a local experience. People are drawn to travel to a specific area because of its gastronomy, but they don’t just want to satisfy their appetites. They want to know the story behind the food, where it comes from, who makes it, and how it got to the table.
What was your favorite trend this year? My favorite trend is “Chef’s Table,” where chefs create a more personal menu through which they can connect with the guests. Through these food and beverage selections, we’re able to deliver a deeper experience and the local culture can be shared by way of the menu.