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Buffet Trends

 

“History, fashion and food repeat themselves”
 

Most of the food concepts, trends originate in the United States. The traditional route followed is from the U.S. especially from New York, Chicago to London. From London these trends go to Hong Kong and then to India. This entire process for a food trend to reach Asia takes about four to five years. However, in the present scenario, food trends last for about five to six years.

 

So, by the time the food trends reach Asia, they are already about to become outdated in the west, if not outdated already. Hence the need of the hour is to be with or ahead of the times…to maintain our niche and create successful restaurants.


BUFFETS
 

More and more stress is being laid on the buffets in U.S.A. and Europe, especially Lunch and Breakfast Buffets. Breakfast buffets are being given a lot of attention these days because of the fact that about 60% of the room guests take the same. Hence lies the opportunity to satisfy and delight that 60% of the room guests. The U.S. way of looking at the Buffets is: ‘The bigger the better.’ Enormous variety is being offered on the buffets these days. Vast variety of high quality is offered on the buffets these days.

 


Going by the International Standards, a breakfast buffet MUST have the following:


 · Ten fresh juices
 · Five types of teas
 · Three types of coffees
 · Five varieties of Jams
 · Eight to ten types of Breads
 · Energy Boosters- at least one
 · Organic Vegetables and fruits
 · Eggs to order
 · Low calorie eggs
 · Eight variety of Cheese
 · Low-fat Cheese
 · Yogurts
 · Fresh fruit Platter
 · Four types of Butter
 · Two ethnic dishes- to suit the local taste buds
 · Ham varieties
 · Cold cuts
 · Conjee
 · Creperie variety.

Expectations of better service and eye-catching presentations have made hotels redesign their buffets.

CHAMPAGNE BRUNCH

One of the best Champagne Buffets can be seen in the Four Seasons Hotel in New York. The entire set-up is like a market. In the center of the restaurant, there are different stations of seafood, big bowls of caviar, smoked salmon pate’, and the works. There is a cascade of Champagne, which creates a unique effect. All the cold food is in the center of the restaurant. Hot food can be ordered A’ la Carte. This restaurant produces total revenue of fifteen to twenty thousand U.S. dollars in just three hours on Sundays! Another unique feature of this Restaurant is the ‘Interactive Kitchen’. Chefs come out of the kitchen and interact with the kids, invite them to the kitchen, give them chef caps and take photographs with them.

Some of the essential features of a good Champagne Brunch are:

 · Guest participation in cooking
 · Smorgasbord
 · Flavored Champagne
 · Juice bar- (In a Grand Hyatt Hotel twenty one different types of fresh juices are squeezed in front of the guests.)
 · Sushi Bar
 · Dim sums
 · Foods like scallops, caviar’, pate’, salmon and fresh salads.

SOME POPULAR CONCEPTS/ CASE STUDIES

NOBU : Nobu is a Japanese inspired fine-dining or semi fine-dining restaurant. The owner is Japanese who had opened a restaurant in Seattle, which had failed. He went back to Japan and met a few Japanese chefs and learnt the use of Japanese ingredients in the food. He experimented with these and created his own kind of food. He tied up with a few partners and moved to California, where he opened a restaurant. He went on to open a chain of Nobus in the U.S., U.K., and Australia. At present there are seven Nobus in the world.


The food offered is simple, nice and elegant. One peculiar feature of the restaurant is that ingredients are all from the local markets of wherever the restaurants are located with the use of Japanese sauces. It was rated as the Number One restaurant ion the main magazines of the world in year 2000. Another striking feature if the restaurant is the food and wine knowledge of the service staff. The staff is very well informed about the wines, the history of the restaurant and they have an in-depth understanding and knowledge of food. The staff is smart, friendly and casual.

 


Some of the dishes on the Menu are:


 · Oyester with onion salsa
 · Hot miso soup
 · Cod with miso.


And the partners of the restaurant chain are the Actor Robert De Nero, Chef Nobuyuki Matushisa, and Trebecca Gill.

ASIA DE CUBA : A brightly lit restaurant in New York, it offers a fusion of Cuban food with Asian spices and herbs. The restaurant has been planned to a great detail. All the hostesses are of the same height and the drinks order, which they take upon seating a guest, are executed very fast. One feature of this restaurant is the use of community tables. Concept of community tables is drawn from the hostel and army mess where there are big tables for people to sit and have their meals etc. The same is done in a refined way and has caught on well.

 

Other features of this restaurant are:


 · Live bands on weekends
 · Good music
 · Use of sideboards, which can be neatly folded and carried by the waiters. Some of these concepts have been incorporated in the Taj group e.g. in Taj

    Calcutta there is a community table in a restaurant. As on enters the restaurant, there is a bar on the left hand side and a big community table on the right

    hand side.


It is of paramount importance that there is proper fusion of food and other ingredients to make a successful restaurant.
As the saying goes  ‘If not done well FUSION is CONFUSION’
 

"We will keep you updated on various trends in the hospitality industry through various articles to come."

 

 

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