Drink Trends 2018

Mixing up drinks service

From visiting The Casual Dining Show last week it became apparent that changes to drink service are soon to take hold within the hospitality industry, and this will effect both the bar and restaurant sectors in the casual dining scene.

In bar service the theatre of mixologists could soon be a thing of the past, as a number of companies are pitching cocktails on tap. There are a number of benefits to having cocktails pre-made and dispensed from kegs like larger and beer.

Firstly is the consistency of the cocktail. Having this pre-made standardises the cocktail and ensures every drink is identical regardless of serving or location. This is great for multisite casual dining brands who wish to keep consistency across a number of different sites.

Second is the time and money saved in upskilling each new bar member. The industry is notorious for its high staff turnover, so removing the need for upskilling reduces training overheads.

And lastly, speed. Pouring a cocktail from tap is much faster than making one from scratch. This is perfect for busy bars and restaurants where time is stretched and large numbers of covers need to be served.

However, what about the theatre of ordering a cocktail? When paying around £8 for a drink, many people expect the elaborate presentation of cocktail making. So if you are heading down the cocktail on tap route, how can you ensure you don’t leave your customers feeling short changed?

The key lies in the presentation of the drink. Serving your cocktails in innovative, glamourous glassware can ensure your cocktails still have that feeling of exclusivity and indulgence. Use vintage cut glassware, elegant stemmed glasses or add fun with Tiki and Skull cups. Whatever your casual dining style make your cocktails stand out with beautiful drink presentation.

 

freestyleQuenching your own thirst

When dining out next time don’t be surprised if you are pouring your own drinks. Not a new radical idea within the casual dining scene, as many well-known outlets already expect customers to re-fill their sodas. However what we drink is set to change.

Coca-Cola are launching their Freestyle drinks machine that places the consumer in full control of their beverage. This new drinks machine allows the consumer to bespoke their drink and create new flavour concoctions that suit their pallet. A simple coke or diet coke will no longer cut it in an era where personalisation is key to connecting with your clientele.

The benefit of getting your own drinks during a meal is speed. No longer will a consumer have to flag down a waiter and wait for their order to be processed and served. Now when they wish to top up their glass they can do it immediately. Instant gratification and speed of service are changing the casual dining scene.

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