The raging popularity of jams and jellies in savory applications won’t come as a surprise to trend watchers. Jam was named by Datassential as the second fastest-growing sandwich condiment last year, muscled out of the top spot only by super-hot Sriracha. The reality, however, is that chain chefs have long favored jams and jellies as condiments and sauces, as witness the jalapeño jelly at Chevys, the onion marmalade at La Madeleine and the red currant jelly at Rock Bottom Brewery, all of which appeared on menus in the 1990s. This current craze represents the latest iteration of a long-running trend at both chains and independent operations.
Everything from vintage cocktails to classic cars from earlier generations is hot once more. For Baby Boomers, there’s an element of nostalgia in retro styles and products, while Millennials’ attraction is more about discovery. Retro foods have also been sweeping menus across the U.S., and they’re no less popular. Essentially comfort foods with a hipster edge, familiar dishes have been reinterpreted, often with a wink and a bit of fun as chefs give them an updated twist.