Emerging Global Cuisines: Culinary Trend Mapping Report

Published: December 10, 2009 - 69 Pages

Table of Contents

Executive Summary
Why Emerging Global Cuisines — Kimberly Egan
Executive Summary

Trend Profiles
Trend Summary
New Southern

Chef Speak: CCD Chefs’ Council Interview
Jeffrey Saad: Cooking Without borders

Strategic Implications
Opportunities for Emerging Global Cuisines

Source List


Every year the predictions roll in for the next hot ethnic food. Will it be Yucatecan? Greek? Australian? We at the Center for Culinary Development (CCD) believe these pinpoint predictions sell short the smorgasbord of global (a term we prefer to “ethnic”) cuisines available to hungry diners, who are becoming ever more sophisticated with each passing year, trend, travel adventure and immigration wave. Today, a variety of global ingredients, flavors and foods are simultaneously growing popular around the country, driving global cuisines far beyond niche business status.

Myriad forces are driving this exciting growth, including new immigration and the resulting new restaurants and food carts, consumers traveling internationally or at least (in this recessionary era) watching internationally themed cooking shows, and the rise of globally inspired packaged prepared foods in a variety of retail channels.

Yet these drivers alone aren’t the whole story. American consumers find great appeal in global foods, as they always have. They seek out the adventure and discovery of new foods, using familiar forms—like sandwiches, stews, barbecue or rice bowls—as a bridge to more exotic culinary expressions. They enjoy the interactive qualities of wrapping, dipping and using chopsticks. And many of them are drawn to the authentically healthful nature (and often the more economical nature) of many foreign cuisines—think Japanese or Indian, with their reliance on vegetables and grains. And then there is the thrill of new flavors: the power of umami, the savory fifth flavor; the artfully balanced hot-sour-salty-sweet Southeast Asian sauces; the aromatic, cinnamon-spice-scented Moroccan tagines.

Emerging Global Cuisines: Culinary Trend Mapping Report profiles five emerging global cuisines that have great potential for trend translation. These cuisines are generating excitement among adventurous diners, restaurant chefs, food editors, celebrity chefs and cookbook writers. Although we are tracking other great global cuisines, such as Indian, these five have exciting and novel elements that are well suited for product development right now because these elements translate so well.

  • Peruvian - The Latin American cuisine getting the most attention right now for unique versions of familiar ingredients (such as corn, potatoes and chiles) and its cross-cultural, cross-continental fusion nature.

  • Moroccan - This North African cuisine is loaded with healthful Mediterranean ingredients that are composed into spice-enhanced, flavorful dishes with a craveable savory-sweet flavor profile.

  • Korean - The latest Asian cuisine to make inroads into the U.S. culinary landscape, Korean is a gutsier, full-flavored version of Japanese, with familiar ingredients (like soy, ginger, beef and cabbage) yet heightened flavors. The interactivity of Korean is also a selling point for Gen Y.

  • Japanese - There’s more to Japanese than sushi as American diners discover the core flavors and foods of this seafood-based cuisine. The healthfulness can’t be beat.

  • New Southern - While retaining its comfort food credentials, this regional American cuisine has gotten a makeover from chefs inspired by its fusion flavors, local ingredients and traditional foodways. Lightened, sophisticated and artisan foods from the South are in the spotlight in America as we celebrate our own food heritage.

Each profile featured in Emerging Global Cuisines includes a Trend Map and summary of key dishes and ingredients on the rise, a delineation of the characteristics of the cuisine that are especially pertinent to food marketers, and strategic bridges to consider in bringing these foods to more mainstream audiences.

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The Culinary Trend Mapping Report is an indispensable tool for those whose job it is to stay abreast of what's hot - and what will be - in the food world.

The reports leverage the Center for Culinary Development’s (CCD) signature Trend Mapping technique, a validated method for identifying which culinary trends are gaining traction and which are simply flashes in the pan.

Each 65+ page journal is packed with trends, data, strategies and insights on the food industry that simply aren't available anywhere else.

Each Issue of the Culinary Trends Mapping Report

  • Identifies the maturity level of foods and ingredients according to CCD’s unique, proprietary 5-stage trend mapping process.
  • Concentrates on a theme that is affecting the food industry, and then looks at the emerging and established trends along the Trend Map that are shaping this theme.
  • Delves into these trends and what they mean for you and the manufacturing, retailing, and foodservice industries.
  • Gives strategic insight into how consumers are thinking of and reacting to new foods and ingredients.
  • Provides business know-how regarding opportunities, challenges, and ways to implement current trends into foodservice, retail, and packaged goods operations.
  • Presents a feature interview with a member chef from CCD’s exclusive 80+ member Chefs’ Council who offers expert analysis and unique perspective on a specific trend.
Trend Mapping

Trend Mapping is guided by the premise that major food trends pass through five distinct stages on their way to the mainstream:

  • Stage 1: The ingredient, dish and/or cooking technique appears at upscale dining establishments, ethnic and popular independent restaurants.
  • Stage 2: The item is featured in specialty consumer-oriented food magazines such as Bon Appetit plus retail stores such as Sur La Table that target culinary professionals and serious home cooks.
  • Stage 3: The item begins to appear in mainstream chain restaurants -- Applebee's or Chili's --as well as retail stores such as Williams-Sonoma that target recreational cooks.
  • Stage 4: Publications such as Family Circle and Better Homes and Gardens pick up the buzz.
  • Stage 5: Finally, the trend makes its way to quick service restaurant menus and either starts to appear or gains increased mainstream presence on grocery store shelves.

Published bimonthly, the Culinary Trend Mapping Report is available for purchase as a single issue or a six-issue subscription.

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