HEC 91 – Trends in Food & Beverage

HEC 91 – Trends in Food & Beverage

 March Munchies 

HEC 91:

Trends in Food & Beverage

By Coco Yang; Edited by Kristen Yi

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Last weekend, the School of Hotel Administrations hosted the 91st Annual Hotel Ezra Cornell, a weekend long conference attended by many alum and industry leaders. One of the programs was a panel talking about “Trends in Food & Beverage: 2016 Edition,” during which the speakers discussed popular concepts establishments are using to attract customers. Speakers included:

  • Drew Nieporent ’77 – Founder and inspiration behind Myriad Restaurant Group (known for his Tribeca Grill)
  • Jeannette Ho (via videoconference) – Vice president of revenue management and analytics for FRHI Hotels and Resorts
  • Jeff Zalaznick ’05 – Cofounders of Major Food Group, a New York-based restaurant group
  • Abby Murtagh ‘ 92 – Resident manager at the Waldorf Astoria New York
  • Moderator:  Damian Mogavero – Founder and CEO of Avero, a software company that aggregates food and beverage (F&B) data

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They started the presentation by talking about trends in ingredients used in restaurants. Some of these trends included:

  1. Highest quality ingredients in casual settings – using high quality ingredients in restaurants that are not necessarily luxury style
  2. Value with accessible luxury – making dishes that seem sophisticated easily accessible to the general population
  3. Global farm-to-table cuisine – many people are interested in this type of “fresh produce” cuisine, where the ingredients are fresh and the cooking maintains the food’s natural flavors
  4. Vegetable forward – appealing to the growing vegetarian and vegan populations
  5. Simple foods amped up – an example is Daily Burger at Madison Square Garden, where medium-rare patties are served with English muffin and optional cheese, which is a little bit more sophisticated than regular stadium snack foods (such as hot dogs and fries)

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They also talked about trends in spaces, both the dining space as well as the kitchen spaces.

  1. Specialty markets such as Brooklyn Flea (Smorgasburg, or foodie paradise with tons of snack and food vendors!) and Pizza Moto
  2. Restaurants within restaurants such as Roberta’s and Blanca
  3. Immersive dining where the dining experience is as important as the food itself
  4. Fast casual everywhere – brands like Shake Shack are climbing up in popularity

Overall, the panel was interesting for any foodies (not just hotelies!) and takes a more analytical view of what’s trending in the food and beverage industry. If you’re interested in this type of event, keep an eye out for HEC 92 for similar programs!

*All featured photos by Vivian Li