Restaurant menu

Restaurant menu trends to watch for in January 2018

By Aaron Jourden

Below, we’ll highlight some of the top menu trends to watch for on Canadian menus in January.


On the trend: Operators are putting duck in everyday dishes that make protein more accessible by showcasing it in familiar, mouth-watering preparations.

  • Exotic call
  • Not always easy to prepare at home
  • Rich and tasty protein option

Examples of menus:

  • Shoeless Joe’s Sports Grill—New Ontario duck wings simmered with gochujang, sesame seeds and green onion
  • At Ashton—Limited-edition mini poutine with duck confit
  • Pacini—New smoked duck salad with pistachios, raspberries, honey and raspberry vinaigrette

Nachos, reinterpreted

About the trend: Operators are taking the classic nacho construction and re-contextualizing it in new and creative ways, like a breakfast dish or Italian preparation, to meet demands for comfort food, bold flavors and new culinary experiences.

  • Ethnic variations
  • Applications across restaurant segments, menu categories and time bands
  • Balances familiarity with novelty

Examples of menus:

  • I JUMP—New chorizo ​​breakfast nachos with citrus chili sauce, bacon, bell pepper, onion, tomato, white cheddar sauce and a fried egg
  • Always Mikes—New nachos appetizer with salsa, bruschetta, peppers, green and black olives, served au gratin with a blend of three cheeses
  • Montana barbecue and bar– recently offered Doritos chips as a base for their classic nacho dishes

Bold Chicken Sandwiches

About the Trend: Operators continue to expand the chicken sandwich category with new offerings featuring gourmet, bold and ethnic ingredients to meet the demand for mouth-watering and indulgent chicken dishes.

  • Beef burger alternative
  • Adaptable to many combinations of toppings, seasonings, preparation styles and breadings
  • Features trendy emerging ingredients and flavors

Examples of menus:

  • Boston pizza—New Kick’n Memphis Chicken Sandwich with Buttermilk Breaded Chicken Breast mixed with a Memphis-style Hot Sauce, topped with Fried Jalapeño, Cheddar, Bacon, Ranch, Lettuce, Tomato and Pickle on a Brioche Bun
  • Mcdonalds—New maple and cheddar Seriously Chicken sandwich with seasoned grilled or crispy chicken breast, crispy onion, lettuce, tomato, cheddar cheese and maple mustard sauce on a brioche bun
  • Vera’s Burger Shack—New Buffalo Chicken Burger with Frank’s RedHot flavored breaded chicken, topped with blue cheese dressing, lettuce and tomato on a seeded bun

About the Author:

Aaron Jourden is Editor-in-Chief – Global and Distribution at Technomic Inc., a Chicago-based Winsight company. Technomic provides its clients with the facts, information and support they need to improve their business strategies, decisions and results. Its services include publications and digital products, as well as proprietary studies and ongoing research on all aspects of the food industry. For more information, visit

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