As the weather heats up, restaurants will naturally be turning to stone fruits, wild salmon and other hallmarks of the summer to entice guests. But several trends not specific to the season will also likely hit their stride this summer, ranging from popular new beverages to specialized service to new culinary techniques.
Cider: The next generation
Hard cider’s popularity is accelerating, according to research firm GuestMetrics, which analyzes point-of-sale data at full-service restaurants. Cider sales in restaurants grew by 40 percent in 2012. But year-over-year sales in the first quarter of 2013 jumped by 70 percent, the company said.
“Ciders obviously have made a huge jump in the market,” said Joe O’Connor, beverage director of Big Night Entertainment Group, which operates six restaurants in the Boston area. “They are appealing to all and easy to drink,” he said, adding that they’re particularly popular at brunch and in the early evening, and as a bonus they happen to be gluten-free. Read More