New England IPA hot trend for 2018

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Emerging trend: New England IPAs are a key growth area in craft beer (image credit: James Beeson)
Emerging trend: New England IPAs are a key growth area in craft beer (image credit: James Beeson)
Key drink trends for 2018 that operators need to take note of include New England IPA, craft cider, lower alcohol drinks, hybrid drinks and ‘adult’ soft drinks, according to a new report.

The Menu and Food Trends Report 2018 ​from Morning Advertiser​ sister title MCA​, also states that Seedlip, the world’s first non-alcoholic spirit, is increasingly prominent on drinks lists.

Fellow hot trends along with New England IPAs included cold-brew coffee, wine on tap, sour beer, craft lager and double IPAs.

Hybrid drinks can combine different types of alcoholic drinks, such as whiskey in IPA barrels, or alcohol with non-alcoholic drinks, such as beer lattes were also pinpointed as hot trends.

Emerging trends

Emerging categories that operators should keep an eye on include alcohol-free beer, bottled cocktails, flavoured gin and organic wine.

Another trend mentioned was ‘adult’ or innovative soft drinks, which it claimed were driven by demand from a large part of the population that is teetotal and wanting more functional beverages.

The report also claimed that operators are beginning to use augmented reality to enhance the theatre of cocktails and drinks.

Operators should also keep their eyes on flat black coffee, Eastern European wines, wine magnums and garnishes as these were highlighted as warm trends.

Peaked categories

New England IPAs are a key growth area in craft beer as are bottled cocktails as they reduce serving time and are less reliant on skilled staff to prepare.

Premium tonics are now widespread in the market as is artisan gin and Prosecco. MCA ​also expected ‘raw’ water – products that are sourced directly from a spring and not filtered in any way – to not continue as a trend, due to concerns about value for money and health.

However, the report outlined trends that had peaked in the drinks category. These included freakshakes, high-energy drinks and unicorn/rainbow drinks.

The MCA Menu and Food Trends Report 2018 ​​is a breakdown and analysis of 31 leading casual, fast food and pub restaurant brands.

Please contact Laura Bicknell on 01293 610343 or email laura.bicknell@mca‑ for the full table of contents and pricing information of the 2018 Menu & Food Trends​​ report from MCA​​.      

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