Emerging Food Trends Shaping Dining in 2023

by Ella

In a culinary landscape that’s constantly evolving, the year 2023 brings forth a wave of new food trends that are redefining the way we eat. Gone are the days when dining out was solely about location; today, it’s about a multifaceted experience that encompasses design, presentation, and even merchandise.

A Fusion of Design and Dining


Back in the 1980s, the focus was on the ambiance, where cutting-edge designs in restaurants served as a backdrop for cultural gatherings and social competitions. According to design critic Stephen Bayley, “Restaurants are as much theatres for social competition and cultural modeling as places to eat.” The dining experience was shaped by dreams of Provençal lunches mixed with Scandinavian furniture fairs. However, today’s diners seek a different kind of authenticity, with a preference for rustic settings and a penchant for charred sardines on rough-hewn wooden planks.


Instagrammable Eateries


The question on everyone’s mind when visiting a restaurant these days: Is it Instagrammable? The visual appeal of dining spaces has become a significant factor in restaurant design. While designers may not set out specifically to create Instagram-worthy environments, spaces often become just that. Sculptural designs, bold forms, and textured surfaces take center stage. The desire for a genuine emotional connection remains, reminding us that, beyond aesthetics, the human element is crucial in dining experiences.


The Return of Ceramics

Ceramics continue to reign supreme as the ideal canvas for serving food. However, there’s a shift towards more rustic and rooted designs, departing from the pristine white porcelain that once dominated. Artisanal ceramics with unique textures and earthy qualities are gaining popularity. This trend is further emphasized by bespoke ceramics tailored to individual courses in multi-course tasting menus, showcasing tactile, sculptural designs.

Cutlery as an Art Form

Cutlery has transcended its functional role to become a statement of social status and wealth. Restaurants charging top dollar for tasting menus demand cutlery that matches the level of precision in their culinary creations. Textural designs that exude a rustic, handmade aesthetic are in vogue, offering a balanced blend of form and function. Artisanal craftsmanship in cutlery adds an extra layer of storytelling to the dining experience.

The Rise of Restaurant Merchandise

Restaurant merchandise has experienced a surge in popularity, with limited-edition releases of branded items creating a buzz akin to fashion drops. From T-shirts to totes, aprons, and homeware, diners can now take a piece of their favorite restaurant home with them. The trend exploded during lockdown, providing an additional source of income for restaurants. The T-shirt, in particular, has become a canvas for creative designs and a coveted keepsake for food enthusiasts.

The Art of Menu Design

Menu designs have evolved to reflect the tastes and aesthetics of their time. Today’s menus feature spot illustrations, reminiscent of tattoos, adding a personalized touch to the dining experience. Artists are creating bespoke menu designs, drawing inspiration from various cultures and folktales. Technology is also playing a role, with AI transforming QR codes into vibrant artworks, promising exciting possibilities for the future of menu presentation.

As we navigate these culinary trends in 2023, one thing remains constant: the ever-evolving, multifaceted nature of the dining experience continues to captivate and inspire food enthusiasts worldwide.



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