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Restaurant and dining trends

30 | 09 | 13

We take a look at some recent trends or findings in the restaurant and hospitality sector.

Cask ale being drunk by a wider audience

Cask ale has lost its image as a drink for older men and is now enjoyed by a much broader audience - including women and young adults.

The news comes from the Cask Report, released at the start of Cask Ale Week (September 27th to October 6th). It claims the drink out performing beer by 6.8 per cent.

Author of the report Peter Brown said: "More people see it as crafted product made from natural British ingredients and like the fact that it's available only in the pub.

"This is great news for all those who care about the future of the British pub since it helps guarantee a new generation of drinkers who will help keep pubs relevant - and open."

Although emphasis is often on trying local brews, Mr Brown pointed out that 70 per cent of people would like to try ale from different parts of the country. Not only would this be good for businesses selling different drinks, he argues it would help the UK's 1,150 breweries get their product out to a wider market.

Eggs making a comeback

The amount of dishes including egg on UK menus is making a strong return.

Technomic's MenuMonitor showed a rise of 18 per cent for the second quarter of this year when compared to that of 2012, resulting in 177 additional egg-based dishes. It suggests dishes such as quiches, omelettes and frittatas are making a bigger appearance - possibly because eggs are a cheap, yet versatile ingredient for any kitchen.

Associate editor for Technomic Christine LaFave Grace said: "Eggs' applications are nearly unlimited, and as operators work both to manage food costs amid uncertain prices for other proteins and craft suitable menu selections for the growing number of diners seeking meatless options, eggs can more than prove their menu mettle."

It is not just chicken eggs either - Technomic reports that 'non-hen' eggs such as duck and quail are also appearing more often. The price of the food goes across a wide range too. One of the cheapest mentioned was an egg and tomato sandwich at EAT for £2.79, while a more expensive example was a duck egg omelette at Bumpkin for £13.95.

Both normal and free-range eggs were reported, although the research firm suggests menus are demonstrating diner's concerns for animal welfare, as well as where ingredients are being sourced.

Restaurants and cafes are some of the most family-friendly businesses

For families with pre-school children, the need for a family-friendly environment is important and few places offer this more than restaurants and cafes according to research.

Global Market Insite (GMI) reports that close to two thirds (64 per cent) of UK parents eat at fast food restaurants with their children, with 42 per cent of this group saying the business met their needs. This was followed by chain restaurants (21 per cent) and supermarket-based cafes (13 per cent).

When it came to actual cafes, however, 50 per cent of respondents take their children to a coffee shop, yet only seven per cent felt their needs were fulfilled. Likewise, 44 per cent take the family to eat in a pub - but only 12 per cent consider it convenient for young kids. In total, 59 per cent of parents asked said they have gone to restaurants that specifically offer family friendly services and facilities.ADNFCR-16001031-ID-801643695-ADNFCR

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