The business of food has grown exponentially over the last ten years and with it has come an exciting and expanded range of restaurants for customers to choose from. From plant-based cafes to gourmet kitchens, there's no shortage of great operators that have stepped up to the challenge of elevating the food and hospitality experience of retail centres and other user-centred precincts. At Future Food, we are constantly on the lookout for operators and concepts that are pushing the envelope on the food and beverage experience. Whether it's a modern update on the classic sandwich bar or an on-trend superfood cafe to replace the chain coffee shop, we are enjoying the growth in unique, customer-centric and exciting options we have when it comes to masterplanning precincts and projects which we work on. We've listed 10 food and beverage brands from around Australia which have caught our eye this year.
Please note: all images have been sourced from external sources. Credits can be found at the end of the article.
Zeus Street Greek has one aim and that is to transform the greasy, late night perception of a souvlaki into one that sees it as a healthy, wholesome meal. They source their produce locally, serve it up in a casual yet vibrant setting and pay it forward to those less fortunate. It's honest food, made with a conscience and served up with love.
Wonderbao is located in Melbourne's CBD. It's small shopfront that serves up big flavours packed into light, fluffy buns. They're cheap, enjoyable and make the perfect 'grab and go' lunch option.
3. Thirsty Bird
Thirsty Bird is a Sydney outlet dishing up all things fried chicken. 2017 has seen the rise of the fried chicken trend putting Thirsty Bird right on point. The menu revolves around buckets, wings and burgers and can be customised with your personal choice of sauces and sides.
Queensland's Quench is a juice, sandwich and smoothie bar hybrid serving up healthy, superfood snacks for people on the go. These types of concepts work for today's fast-paced yet health conscious consumer who wants an easy, wholesome option on the go.
5. Poke Me
Bowl food was a trend to watch this year and the Hawaiian-born poke bowl has taken centre stage. Poke Me is one of a number of concepts that have popped up around Australia and the globe which offer these whole food-based bowls. They get a big tick on the nutrition front and are very photogenic making them a social media masterpiece.
Pineapple Express is a superfood cafe with a number of outlets dotted throughout Queensland. Whether you want organic nachos with kale and pulled pork or an Acai nutter smoothie bowl, this concept works for those who are after a vibrant, delicious yet healthy food and beverage experience.
NYC Bagel Deli is located in Brisbane, bringing traditional New York style bagels to the Australian market. They've even created a rainbow bagel which is capturing plenty of attention across the social media channels.
8. Motto Motto
Motto Motto, a casual Japanese concept, is popping up at more and more food precincts around Australia. The concept is the little sister of one of one of Australia's most awarded Japanese restaurants, Sono, making it an attractive quick service option for any foodie looking for fine dining techniques and ingredients in a causal, quick service setting.
Sydney and Queensland are home to Italian Street Kitchen with outlets both in Neutral Bay, North Sydney and Newstead in Brisbane. This concept is designed for sharing meals with friends and family and dishing up traditional Italian recipes passed down through generations and families. With it being a more full-service style outlet, you can go to Italian Street Kitchen in the middle of your shopping experience and enjoy a full meal with starters, mains and drinks allowing you to settle into the meal and enjoy it for a little longer.
8Bit now has three outlets in Melbourne with the original being in Footscray and the remaining two located in Melbourne's CBD. It is one of Melbourne's top-rated burgers and it took out Time Out's people's choice award for Melbourne's best fast food. They've got the business down pat with a good variety of burgers, hot dogs, shakes and sides as well as clever branding and beautifully designed stores.
We know there are hundreds of other operators out there who are doing exciting things with food and beverage and this list is purely a snapshot of the variety there is on offer. We would love to learn about and share other concepts and brands that you might have discovered or enjoyed recently so feel free to make a comment in the section below.
Which food and beverage concepts, brands and operators are you enjoying right now?
Cover image of Zeus Street Greek via Out in Canberra, Zeus Street Greek via Weekend Notes, Thirsty Bird via Broadsheet Sydney, Wonderbao via Deliveroo , Motto Motto via Indulge Magazine and taken by Toby Scott, Poke Me via The Urban List, 8Bit via Venues, Quench via Concrete Playground Brisbane, Pineapple Express via Pineapple Express Facebook, Italian Street Kitchen via For Food's Sake, NYC Bagel via NYC Bagel Deli Facebook