Food Trends in Austin

“Today’s consumers are more interested than ever in what they eat and where their food comes from, and that is reflected in our menu trends research. True trends—as opposed to temporary fads—show the evolution of the wider shifts of our modern society over time, and focus on the provenance of various food and beverage items, unique aspects of how they are prepared and presented, as well as the dietary profiles of those meals.[i]”

Taking advantage of these trends gives merchants the upper hand, and opting to accept PayPal™ in-store takes this advantage one step further. Visitors as well as Austinites will be seeking out the next best thing, and will often turn to their PayPal™ apps to discover new restaurants in the area. Locally based businesses using Revel’s PayPal™ integration will appear in the directory, giving the consumers a chance to discover new businesses in their quest for the latest food trends in Austin. So what are these invested consumers demanding when it comes to their food? Read on …

Keeping it Local: The past year has been one of growth for the farm-to-table movement in this hip Texas city, where support for local farms and businesses and micro-local produce is “in” in a big way. Food is fresh, whole and real, stimulating the economy from the garden or farm to the plate.

Making it from Scratch: Stocking a kitchen with gourmet meats is one thing. Serving house-made sausages, salamis and charcuterie is another, and it’s one that Austin eateries are perfecting, as the trend for in-house butchering and curing ramps up. Indeed, the National Restaurant Association named this as a #1 trend for 2014.

Hunt off the Beaten Path: This isn’t your mama’s steak, to put it mildly. Meat, like everything else, is bigger in Texas. Bigger and more unusual. Expect to see more wild game, goat, and rabbit popping up around the city, spreading from ethnic restaurants to more mainstream tables.

Wheat Need Not Apply: The movement away from all things gluten has taken a firm hold in Austin. Though some scoff at the city’s love affair with quinoa, this trend cannot be denied. Quinoa’s health benefits and lofty gluten-free status make it a veritable staple in Austin restaurants, while ancient grains like amaranth make bright and intriguing appearances.

Get Moving: Food trucks, those heavenly nosh stops on wheels, may have finally reached saturation. While the number of licensed food trucks skyrocketed from 955 in 2008 to more than 1,400 in 2012, there are currently some 600 active food trailers in Austin. Food trucks that focus on a niche fair the best, and those that can offer speed and convenience, for instance by accepting PayPal,™ can still get a leg up on their brick-and-mortar competitors come lunchtime.

If you find yourself in Austin, be sure to download the PayPal™ app--you’ll discover new restaurants, and can take advantage of the trends highlighted above.


[i]Quoted from Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the National Restaurant Association’s research and knowledge group.