We’ve learned a lot covering food and drink these past several months -- holla, Best New Restaurants 2019 -- and the past several years. Collectively, among executive editor Nicole Taylor, writer-at-large Kevin Alexander, and myself, your humble senior food editor, we have about 30+ years of food media experience. That’s given us a certain perspective on the future of eating and drinking. And maybe we’re overthinking things here, but we see a funny thing happening. As one trend dies, it seems to get reborn as a new trend, reconfigured.
Think about it long enough and we have to ask ourselves, what’s even the point of writing these “future of food” type trend pieces?
I guess we can’t help wanting to gaze into a crystal ball and see what’s next, to peek into the shiny, wrapped-up package of tomorrow. But also, in an increasingly anxious age, we want to know where we’ve been and where we’re going. I can’t tell you how the presidential election will land, but let’s huddle around the fire and talk about food trends, shall we?
So with that in mind, and without getting too bogged down in heavy prognostication, and because it’s Christmas, and at Christmas you tell the truth, here’s our end-of-year future-talking trend piece, hot-take style.
Just please, don’t take any of this as seriously as we do.
Burgers are dead: Long live burgers
Everyone wants to talk about the Impossible Burger and all the other new meatless burgers on the market. But here’s what we’ve noticed: meatless burgers have killed the beef burger if we’re talking about your average flat griddle patty. You’d better up your game if you want to keep up with the novelty of the big IB (why does that sound gross?).
The answer? Witness the rebirth of thick, juicy gastropub burgers. (I’ll take mine locally grass-finished, please.) These burgers are here to remind you why you fell in love with fatty grilled ground beef in the first place. These burgers are soaring to the heights Impossible Burgers cannot reach. They are a dare, a provocation. Are they also a last stand? Keep eating and we’ll see.