Some Food & Beverage Trends that we should follow this year

Have Some Sympathy for the Delivery Guy

Remember, the delivery business is thriving because we have drivers doing the work we don't want to do. They sit in traffic, breathing in horrible exhaust fumes; they wait patiently for their food orders to be prepared in the restaurant knowing they are neither staff nor guest -- often having no where to wait or anyone communicating with them; it's often dangerous; they get blamed for a wrong order when it's most likely the fault of the restaurant, and they often get fined or penalized for slow deliveries.

The Return of Hospitality

Meanwhile, while your staff is running around to try and fill those Take-Away orders (that are charging you 30-35% of your already slim margins), there’s no one saying “Hello” to guests at the front door, no one’s picking up your phone, and we’re having to frantically wave waiters down to get a side of chili sauce. Sure, these are small details, but it’s in these small interactions that make up great hospitality and great experiences. Small, yes, but they matter and too many restaurants/ bars, etc are neglecting them.

Owners that Are Seriously Committed to Protecting and Supporting the Most Valuable Asset a Venue Has: Their Staff

We keep hearing that your team's culture is the most important part of a venue's success. GMs, Owners, and HR all nod in agreement when it's argued that more training is needed -- and lots of it. Our LinkedIn Pages are full of inspiring and motivational quotes about how employee engagement is the greatest benefit companies can give. Our F&B Newsletters tell us staff retention is the greatest challenge facing hotels and restaurants today. Yet, sadly, these arguments are, far too often, not taken very seriously.​I still see clients who cut training budgets first, followed by staff meals, and their 'Sustainability Strategy' = "When 1 staff resigns, just get another."

We Love the Pretty Food & Beverage Instagram Photos -- Keep 'em Coming!

If you don't have someone taking professional looking photos of your venue, dishes, cocktails, and staff, you're missing out. Great shots and videos of your venue give you so much to promote and play with.

Reduction of the Number of Times Some Venues Post About Their Restaurant / Bar / Pool Party on Facebook

I get it -- you want to attract guests and yes, I can turn off notifications from you, but should I have to? There are days when you're promoting your venue so often and on so many pages that it borders on harassment. Additionally, when I see the same post on several different pages, I feel that your venue may be desperate for guests -- never a good look for any venue.

Finally, We Did It!

Believe we finally killed off the last the last Mason Jar cocktails. Well done!

Unpersonalized Email Addresses for Your Staff Needs to Stop

Sure, with an industry that has (sadly), such significant amounts of turnover, it makes sense to de-personalize your staff emails and simply keep the company emails 'position-centric' instead of 'person-centric.' Suppliers love this as well. But, is hospitality about positions or people? When you give the new Bar Manager the same email address as the previous Bar Manager, instead of starting their new job with passion and confidence, they're already insecure. And have you ever tried 'searching' for a particular person when they have an impersonal email?

Human Resources Needs to Train Hospitality Staff that the Official Resignation Letter is Not Jumping Out of the Restaurant LINE Chat Group

It's shameful how often this is done to avoid a little conflict.

Watch Your Back-Bar

Much like a piece of artwork framed on the wall of your restaurant, your back-bar should also be carefully curated. After a 10-second glance, and I can tell the state of your bar program by the quality of your back-bar. If I see Smirnoff Iced Cake vodka or De Kuyper Island Punch Pucker schnapps taking up valuable back-bar where you could have more premium spirits that help support your concept, I'm sticking with bottled beer

We Need More Less Expensive Cocktails

The great thing about cocktails is you can order several at one sitting -- hard to do that with a steak. "I can order 4 Mojitos, but likely only 1 burger." Thus, why are cocktails so damn expensive? Anything over 380 THB ($12 USD / $16 SGD) and you're crushing the guest desire to order more than 1.

Need Some Help? More Venues Turning to Speciality Food & Beverage Consultants

When seeking some expertise in a specific area -- Conceptual Design, Staff Training, Social Media Strategies, Pre-Opening, Bar & Beverage, Menus, etc., more and more venues are wisely turning to consultants. Short-term expertise is a better ROI solution than any long-term confusion or stagnation.

Stop with the Plastic Straw Ban Phoniness

Hooray! Hotels and Restaurants around the world are patting themselves on the back for switching from plastic straws to bamboo, stainless steel, paper, etc straws. Meanwhile, out of guest sight, they often lack the desire or initiative to recycle plastic, glass, cardboard, aluminum, and the list goes on. Disappointing, but there's a good chance that plastic bottle you're drinking out of with the 'organic, real straw straw' doesn't get recycled. The plastic straw ban has given operators something to showcase, while often the 'back-of-house' and out-of-guest-sight operations still have a long way to go. Great to see some of these plastic straw bans going into effect, but some of the work is simply cosmetic.

An Hour Glass Timer Next to Each Cocktail in the Menu Indicating How Long The Cocktail Will Take to Make and Reach Your Table

While many menus now list the calories a dish has and any particular allergens, we also need to know how long that Craft Cocktail is going to take to reach my lips from the time I order it. We get that great drinks take time, but Mr. Mixologist, 20 minutes for my Negroni is way too long. In general, the time we order a cocktail to the time it hits our table, needs to be faster. ​