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Serve up these big ideas this holiday season

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The year is quickly drawing to a close and as everyone prepares for the holiday season and thinks about the new year, you’re probably thinking how do you adapt menus to drive consumers into your restaurant versus the growing number of alternative food options. Well, a seasonal menu change and limited time offer (LTO) is what operators are investing in over the next several months to drive traffic and sales.

Seasonal beverage LT0’s is big business. While the temperature may be dropping, cold brew coffee is MPX_Nitro_Image1-(1).jpgheating up beverage menus from coast to coast according to Catherine Lamb from Food52. Consumer spending continues to increase on all types of beverages. According to Mintel, cold brew is one of the fastest, increasing 115% versus 2015. The Multiplex N2Fusion® Nitrogen Beverage Dispenser is the perfect beverage dispensing option to take advantage of the customers need for craft or cold brew beverages. Operators can offer customers nitrogenated or still beverages in caffeinated or healthier options.

Flavor and ingredient trends provide customers with options they are not able to prepare at home. Technomic is already predicting Spring 2018 flavor trends, but let’s first look at Fall and Winter 2017.

Fall highlights apples as an ingredient to top pizza and as a twist on traditional side dishes like apple slaw. Cauliflower is moving from a bland side dish to a buffalo flavored appetizer, healthy pizza crust, or as an ingredient in tacos. Technomic also reports that seasonal fruits and veggies are some of the most popular new menu items as operators focus on local and seasonal offerings.

Winter is all about seasonal flavor profiles more than the ingredients according to Technomic, Inc., Seasons Eatings Winter 2017. The usual flavor suspects like nutmeg and gingerbread are holiday staples, but cinnamon sees a resurgence when it comes to beverages, both alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages, showing double digit mean mentions on adult beverages (21.7%). The surprise ingredient of the 2017 winter season is Kale. Showing menu increase of 49.1% in the last two years. Kale is being used not only as a lettuce alternative in salads, but as a bread alternative for burgers and wraps.

For today’s operators to keep up with seasonal and local menu offerings, they must invest in new kitchen equipment which allows them to change menus quarterly, monthly, weekly and in some cases daily and hourly. It’s these types of evolving kitchen needs that make working with an equipment partner who focuses on innovation imperative.
Delfield® Coolscapes refrigeration options with GreenGenius offers customers a variety for their refrigeration needs while saving customers money by using the most innovative hydrocarbon refrigeration cooling system with R290. 

Merrychef® eikon® e2s makes adding new menu items as simple as upload and go. The easyTouch® screen reduces the need for employee training when launching new menu items. Just upload, press, and cook.  
 
Find out more about how each of our leading brands are bringing innovation to the table here
www.welbilt.us/Our-Brands
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