Trend Watch: Acidic cocktails, breakfast poutine, senposai

By Katie Belflower

In our latest edition of Trend Watch with Technomic, we are focusing on three current top menu trends across Canada, showcasing some of the restaurants that are creatively and successfully adding these items, flavours, or ingredients to their menus. This edition covers acidic cocktails, breakfast poutine, and senposai.

Acidic ingredients in cocktails

Operators are spotlighting various types of acids in cocktails, adding new flavours and textures to adult beverages on the menu. These acids can provide a unique mouthfeel and bright, tangy element to today’s cocktails.

Menu examples:

  • Clementine in Edmonton, Alberta, served the L’Orange cocktail with pisco, citrus vodka, Fino Sherry, Cocchi Americano, apricot, and lactic acid
  • La Banane in Toronto menued the Sonic the Hedgehog cocktail with mandarin gin, labrador tea, Pineau, preserved lemon, champagne acid, and tonic

Breakfast poutine

Independent operators are serving this classic Canadian dish with breakfast ingredients such as eggs and hollandaise sauce. This is an example of a daypart mashup, with breakfast and lunch/dinner options being combined, making for interesting and creative menu items.

Menu examples:

  • Malt & Mortar in Edmonton, Alberta, offered Breakfast Poutine with scrambled eggs on a bed of tater tots, sauteed cremini mushrooms, caramelized onions, sweet peppers, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, hollandaise and smoked tomato jam
  • Gezellig in Ottawa, Ontario, served Breakfast Poutine with beef brisket, baked beans, home fries, cheese curds, hollandaise sauce, and a poached egg


Senposai is being featured on menus as an alternative to other, more traditional greens. The veggie is a hybrid of cabbage and Japanese mustard greens with a tender texture and a mild, mustardy taste.

Menu examples:

  • Foxy in Montreal menued Cappelletti with zucchini, ricotta, and senposai
  • Hoogan et Beaufort in Montreal offered Arctic Char with nori, sunchoke, and senposai

Trend Watch is based on menu trends noted by Technomic.

Katie Belflower is Associate Editor for Technomic, a Chicago-based foodservice research and consulting firm. Technomic provides clients with the facts, insights and consulting support they need to enhance their business strategies, decisions and results. The company’s services include publications and digital products as well as proprietary studies and ongoing research on all aspects of the food industry, including menu trends.

Title photo courtesy of Bar Banane’s Facebook page.