Chicharrones at Abattoir restaurant in Atlanta.
First published on nytimes.com
IN our newly omnivorous nation, restaurant trends often have the same viral spread and short life span as boy bands — witness 2011’s crispy pig ears and sea buckthorn berries. Eating around the country on reporting trips in 2012, I saw food lovers everywhere embracing new interpretations of farm-to-table and nose-to-tail as fast as they came along.
But along with the flashes in the pan, I saw some new developments that seem to have both legs and merit.
In the big picture, Nordic naturalism (with its embrace of ancient, earthy and cold-weather foods) and Spanish modernism (which celebrates intense flavors and technical skills) are surging as American chefs return from internships abroad at places like Noma, Mugaritz and Arzak.
Closer up, in kitchens and on plates, I noted 10 food trends we will taste more of in 2013. There are tastes for all persuasions, and enough strong runners-up to fill the menu of a Brooklyn pop-up: pine needles, pimentón, horseradish, seaweed, uni, poutine, American cheese, Spanish ham, whey, ashes and fish milt (translation: sperm). more…