Our Food Philosophy at Sodexo Prestige Venues & Events is one of creativity. And, where better to find inspiration that by listening to our customers, observing current crazes and anticipating new ideas.
Here, are just a few examples of how we’ve interpreted contemporary food trends at our summer events.
Guests and consumers are becoming increasingly receptive to the idea of vegetarian food. The term ‘flexatarian’ has been embraced in 2018 and is a practice that’s not going anywhere soon. A flexatarian is someone who eats vegetarian or vegan part time, on a schedule of their own choosing.
The reasons for the rise in vegetarian eating are twofold: the public are better educated about the environmental impact of mass meat production, and about the health benefits of a non-meat based die - Veganuary was participated in much greater numbers than ever before this year!
The sharing starters at The RHS Chelsea Flower Show’s Jardin Blanc were 80% veggie, including an edible vegetable humous garden, Maman Blanc’s tomato salad and Vietnamese rolls.
Also at The RHS Chelsea Flower Show, the street food market in the Thames View Café offered lots of veggie options: chargrilled halloumi with harissa cauliflower and a vegan Ploughman’s lunch.
Royal Ascot had an entire veggie/vegan selector for hospitality guests, which Prestige Venues & Events developed in line with their standard menus.
BBQ food is going from strength to strength. More and more consumers are choosing restaurants with barbeque-type offers over traditional fine dining establishments. This is because they are often cheaper, the dishes have just as much flavour, and these eateries incorporate the on-going demand for upmarket street food.
The Furlong restaurant at Royal Ascot has moved towards the trend for casual grazing which includes a whole slow cooked BBQ station of 36 hour cooked brisket and slow cooked lamb shoulder.
In the Parade Ring at Royal Ascot we installed a green egg barbeque for finishing the tandoori scallops and searing the marinated fillet of beef once they came out of the waterbath.
Waste not, want not
Consumers care about the environmental impact of their dining out experience, so waste management factors heavily into a restaurant’s reputation. Plus, with the cost of produce increasing, it makes perfect sense to use not only nose-to-tail ethos, but also root-to-tip.
Sodexo practice a waste not want not ethos at their events venue, Ascot Racecourse. For example, if our chefs are using artichoke for a dish they dehydrate then deep fry the skins to make a delicious canapé base. And, we have started buying meat that is less butchered - we get whole lambs from the Royal Estate then butcher them ourselves, using every part for dishes, parfaits, sauces and stocks. This is also great for the younger chefs who can hone these forgotten skills.
Burger industry in UK is worth £3.3b, and is a big part of our stadia and events retail business. Currently, Sodexo are in the middle of a huge project to deliver a market-leading stadia burger across all of our venues and events to an ever more discerning customer.
The Open burger has become very famous as something to try whilst at the annual golf tournament.
The stadia burger is due to launch this year. We have worked with some of the top butchers and bakers around the country to ensure that a consistent and recognisable product is available at all of our Sodexo venues.
To learn more about food at Prestige Venues & Events, click here