Restaurant consultant Andrew Freeman & Co. recently released their 2011 Tend List: 18 up-and-coming ideas that restaurateurs should be watching. They predict that veggies will be big in restaurants next year, announcing that:
Event meat-minded chefs are vegging out as flexitarian goes mainstream. Meatless Mondays and vegetable based tasting menus are gaining traction as guests realize it’s not all about the meat on the plate. There’s nothing to beef about.
Many eateries nationwide have already realized that Meatless Mondays are great for business and a creative way to showcase their skills. Sine celebrity chef Mario Batali began offering Meatless Monday options in his restaurants across the country, others have followed his lead. Meatless Monday dining suggestions are now popping up in Zagat, the Chicago Tribune, Organic Authority and Food & Wine. The trend has even gone international, with Canada’s Globe and Mail reporting on chefs who use meatless meals to highlight their culinary talents.
Not only are Meatless Mondays popular, they make good sense. Restaurateurs can use plant-based meals to transform an otherwise slow business day into an opportunity for special sales, creative promotions and original dishes. The success of eateries like Dovetail, Nage, Maoz Vegetarian and Tender Greens just goes to show that Meatless Monday is popular with chefs and customers alike.