One of our favorite seasons is upon us. Fall in DC calls for warming up by a roaring fire and long, brisk walks around the famed Tidal Basin. We’ve been busy collaborating with clients on autumn dishes, fall food ideas, and menu development to showcase their brand’s concept direction, flavor profiles, and fall ingredients.
Three interesting takes on traditional fall menu ideas for restaurants we’ve been working with and watching trend this season are:
Figs & Dates. Both at their peak in fall, chefs are rediscovering these ancient, sweet fruits and serving them in a variety of ways. From jam and pastes to delicious additions to cheese plates, breads & spreads, sliced melon, and cured meat, figs and dates are both highly nutritious. Our team has developed popular dishes for clients that feature both figs and dates, like a signature Farmers Salad featuring dates, avocado, grapes, and olives; a tasty starter of Blue Cheese Bacon Dates, and a uniquely savory Prosciutto & Fig Farm Bread with mascarpone and balsamic glaze.
Grain Bowls. We’re seeing lots of grain bowls making their way onto menus this fall. Our team has worked with clients to combine grains with fruit, nuts, dark chocolate, and more to create some really interesting flavors with grains like steel-cut oats, bulgur, quinoa, and sprouted wheat. How does steel-cut oatmeal served with almonds, raisins, and brown sugar sound for breakfast? How about a grain bowl filled with quinoa, sprouted wheat, roasted sweet potato, dark chocolate, coconut nut butter, mixed seeds, dried fruit, apples, and yogurt? We also love the simplicity of Greek yogurt and granola topped with fresh fruit.
Amaro Cocktails. Perfect for cool, fall evenings, this smooth, bittersweet, full-bodied liqueur is traditionally served as a digestif or aperitif.Similar in form to brandy, amaro is a unique infusion of grape brandy mixed with herbs, citrus, and spices. Purists enjoy their amaro straight up: chilled, neat, or on the rocks with a twist. Our bar & beverage team have partnered with the spirit specialists at DC’s Founding Spirits distillery to create a delicious, “never bitter” amaro, that guests are enjoying in cocktails such as an Amaro Daiquiri with amaro, rye whisky, lime, and orgeat.