2018 Food & Drink Trends

So long, avocado toast

Avocado toast, cacio e pepe and suspiciously vibrant smoothie bowls have stolen the spotlight for just a bit longer than we expected, which is why we're all too happy to see which foods will be dominating our plates come January. From the new spices you'll be cooking with to the rise of root-to-stem cuisine, these are the food industry's predictions for what 2018 has in store for your appetite.

Flowers: Not Just for Centerpieces

And we're not talking about the delicate blossoms chefs are garnishing your plates with via tweezers either. According to Whole Foods' 2018 predictions, expect to see flowers like lavender and hibiscus go from finishing touch to main stage flavor. 

Get Acquainted with East African Cooking

Now that you've mastered Filipino food, it's time to familiarize your spice drawer with the flavors of Ethiopia and Tunisia. McCormick's annual Flavor Forecast envisions home cooks experimenting with the core ingredients of African cuisine—like sweetly scented berbere spice blend

Georgian Wines

After hiding in the shadows, varietals from Georgia (the country, that is) are set to experience a rise in sales by 50 percent, Bret Thorn, senior editor of Nation's Restaurant News, reports. It also doesn't hurt that Georgian cuisine is finally getting its due.

Cannabis Cuisine

No, you don't just happen to be extra hungry: As more states make this—er—herb available for uses outside medicine, both Thorn and the Specialty Food Association believe you'll start seeing marijuana make its way to your local grocery aisles. Meanwhile, private chefs with experience ranging from James Beard nominations to Michelin kitchens have already gotten a head start via exclusive, high-end supper clubs where THC is the star. 

That's Not Really a Burger

Whole Foods also expects to see plant-based "proteins" become more and more common. Take the success of faux-meat products like the Impossible Burger, for example, which went from novelty experiment to menu item at David Chang's restaurant, Momofuku Nishi.

Nose-to-Tail Goes Root-to-Stem

The no-waste cooking movement is only shaking off its training wheels. Both chefs and producers are taking the nose-to-tail butcher's philosophy and applying it to vegetables, too, the Specialty Food Association notes. Just get into the habit of keeping your carrot tops and peels next year.

The Hyper-Local Food Movement

Having a restaurant with a backyard garden to supply ingredients isn't just a luxury—it's a requirement. (Just look to Olmsted in Brooklyn, which was named by Esquire and Bon Appétit as one of the country's best new restaurants.) Meanwhile, the movement's godfather, René Redzepi, released his own phone app earlier this year that shows you how to hunt for food in your own backyard.