The Biggest Coming Food Trends of 2017, According to 65 of America’s Top Chefs


Chefs know better than anyone what to look out for

Composite by Medina Lynn

Chefs polled include (clockwise from top) Dan Barber, Jacques Pepin, Michael Solomonov, and Cesare Casella.

With 2016 finally at an end, we can start to look forward to 2017 and the countless dining opportunities it will present (hey, we’ve got our priorities in order). But how will the restaurant world change in the year ahead? We asked 65 chefs from across the country to make their best educated guesses and predict what the year ahead will hold for their industry — and we got some surprising answers.

The Biggest Coming Food Trends of 2017, According to 65 of America’s Top Chefs (Slideshow)

Around this time of year, just about everyone tries to predict what will transpire in the year to come, be it political intrigue or celebrity breakups. And the food world is no different: Today’s Dietitian polled 1,700 dietitians to discover that top superfoods of 2017 will include seeds, nuts, kale, and avocado (groundbreaking!); Pinterest predicts that we’ll see more jackfruit, sous-vide cooking, “clean eating chips,” and something called Buddha bowls; and McCormick’s 2017 Flavor Forecast foresees us eating a lot more congee, Middle Eastern spices, cured egg yolks, and barberries. But when it comes to overall restaurant, dining, and culinary trends, nobody’s asked as many chefs as we did for their predictions.

Our chefs run the gamut from near-household names like Jacques Pepin, Alex Guarnaschelli, and Blue Hill’s Dan Barber to lesser-known local chefs; from barbecue expert Ray Lampe to Indian superstar Manish Mehotra (Indian Accent); from Israeli cuisine master Michael Solomonov (Zahav) to Tal Ronnen, quite possibly America’s best vegan chef (Crossroads). They’re based in cities as wide-ranging as Dallas; San Antonio, Chicago, Houston, St. Louis, Boston, and Nashville, and they have hundreds of collective years of cooking experience. These chefs are on the front lines of the culinary world, and here’s what they think we can expect to see in the year ahead.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.


Ferran Adrià: 'Quality Will Be the Future'

One of the most influential chefs of our time became also one of the most sought-after minds to think about innovation – especially regarding food. Since his legendary restaurant El Bulli closed in 2011, Ferran Adrià has dedicated himself to studies at his El Bulli Foundation and has been working on a number of ambitious projects, like Bullipedia, which he calls as the “largest encyclopedia in the world” and had its first volume, Bebidas, devoted to drinks, launched in November 2017. Now, there will be 35 academic books of 500 pages each to be released in the next 4 years, starting in April 2018.

Back in 2014, Ferran Adrià announced his desire to transform the former El Bulli area into a new space dedicated to cooking and research, El Bulli 1846. This ambitious project faced opposition from locals and environmentalists and stopped for three years, until July 2017 when the local planning commission gave the approval to reopen the El Bulli building in 2018.

In a recent visit to Brazil to talk about innovation and his projects, the Spanish chef said that he believes that there is much more talk about innovation than quality in the gastronomy today. “It should be the other way around” he says, stating that high innovation is very difficult to achieve. “We had a great leap of innovation with El Bulli, which has influenced a lot of chefs and the whole gastronomic scene. Masterchef would not exist without ElBulli”, he says. “The real innovation”, he continues, “is to make what you want the way you want”.

We talked to Adrià about new plans, Spanish cuisine and innovation "The future of restaurants tends to be more informal, seeking a more democratic and popular cuisine, but with a focus on creativity and innovation, as it happens here or at Tickets [one of the most famous restaurants of his brother, Albert]", he concludes.



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