Trends: Keeping track.

Two weeks ago Culinary Promiscuity lampooned trend predictors and set up our own trends. One of the postulates was that you an say whatever you want in trends, because nobody remembers them ten minutes after they read them, unless the trend comes true. In that case they say, “Oh, yes. I read about that in The FoodSnob. My, aren’t they on the money!!??).

Since we now have our own list of Trends for 2012, we can’t really forget them. In fact, we keep being reminded of them, so it seems like a good idea to keep track. My scientific examination of the comparative accuracy of trend lists shows them to right less than fifty percent of the time, and generally about 20%. (The method involved Googling “trend lists and asking friends if these really were trends). If Culinary Promiscuity’s List of Trends, then, reaches 50% we beat the odds and should be nominated for something. If it is only 40%, we are still the best of a bad lot. What have we got to lose?

For fairness. let’s identify trend: A trend is something that is either new or dormant in the field where it trends and in a short period of time gains awareness and a following. a trend is hardly a trend unless it gets TV play, at least twelve blogs and one glossy cover. Food trends need to be copied, often mindlessly, by chefs and restaurants aspiring to hitch their stars to the latest star. Examples are Cajun in the eighties, when every restaurant started burning their now endangered redfish, California Cuisine and the mesquite grills which polluted the Beverly Hills air in the 90’s, Fusion Cuisine, later claimed by the French, who apparently discovered lemon grass about five years after the US got sick of it, and Locovorism in our current millennium.

Some trends, like the Northern Italian frenzy kicked off by brilliant restaurateur Larry Mendel, settle from their trendiness into part of our culinary canon, while  others  eventually reach a saturation point of vomitus proportions. (How tempted are you, for instance, to smack every waiter who rolls out pedigree of your salad?

Something that was popular and still is, possibly a little more, or a spotty appearance of some ethnic cuisine does not a trend make.

Having set the parameters for our trend success, here our first victory.

Weeds are definitely trending according to the New York Post.  December Food Arts, furthermore, features an article on foraging chefs.

The public profiles of the Middle Eastern Cuisine are also rising, concurrent with increased tourist interest in the area.November’s Food Arts features an Article on Moroccan food,  And Paula Wolfert is re releasing her Moroccan Cook Book.

Our score thus far is therefor:

MIddle Eastern Food:   1

Weeds:                          2

Everything else:             0

That’s 20k%. We’re up there with the big boys, but the year’s still young.


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