The big hits of the last couple of years are now ubiquitous. We’ll pay you 17 dollars for a bowl of ramen, and we won’t complain (as long as it’s good).
This year brought with it a whole new crop of trends, ones that can’t be encompassed in a single theme. What does it mean that we’re as equally obsessed with kimchi, that piquant staple of Korean cuisine, and bone marrow, the Italian luxury?
Here are the 10 food trends we saw absolutely everywhere this year—for better and for worse.
Photo credit: Chun’s Pictures, Flickr
Thank goodness the cronut is actually reported to be tasty. Otherwise this mashup of two perfectly fantastic foods would be infuriating.
2. Blistered Peppers
Photo credit: jlastras, Flickr
Padrón peppers, you are totally delicious when blistered on an open flame, sprinkled with fat flakes of Maldon sea salt, and drizzled with lemon juice. Fantastic. But we’re tired of paying $8 for a spartan handful of you.
3. Artisanal Ice
Photo credit: Robert S. Donovan, Flickr
We totally get the appeal of these suckers; they melt more slowly, so they don’t throw off the balance of a well-made cocktail by diluting its (precious) booze too fast. But man, are they everywhere.
4. Southern Food
Photo credit: vxla, Flickr
There’s been a veritable explosion of red-and-white checked tablecloths, cocktails in jam jars, shrimp ‘n grits, and fried chicken all across the country. We are so not complaining.
5. Bone Marrow
Photo credit: Herry Lawford, Flickr
The unctuous delicacy is being served all over the country, in deafeningly decadent incarnations—picture it whipped into butter and slathered on to steak, or spooned on top of uni—and has been declared by one food writer to be “next year’s bacon.”
Photo credit: T. Tseng, Flickr
It’s incredible how many sub-par, gummy renditions of octopus there are around, but when you get a knockout dish of it, lightly charred, it’s a dream.
Photo credit: USAG- Humphreys, Flickr
Sassy kimchi has expanded beyond the realm of the Korean restaurant, and now makes cameos all the heck over the place—from New American spots to wine bars.
8. Wine on Tap
Photo credit: Kendrick Hang, Flickr
Speaking of which, wine on tap, we wished we liked you better, but we have not yet met a version of you we like—never mind for which we’d shell out 30 bucks.
9. Whole Roast Chicken
Photo credit: Getty Images
We now live in a nation where diners will pay $80 for a roast chicken—and not mind in the least, as long as it’s fancy enough. Expect to see this right through next year.
10. "The New Kale"
Photo credit: Molly Elliott, Flickr
OK, yes, we’ve been guilty of thinking/ writing/ opining about this. But now we’re done. Is “the new kale” carrots? Squash? Pumpkin? Garlic? We don’t know, we don’t care, and now we’re done using the phrase.
At least until 2014.