Limited edition items on menus are a good way of creating a new product without committing to the tedious preparation all year round. Well-established limited-edition menu items have built their cult following, like the pumpkin spice latte of Starbucks. You can also create your form of this by changing your menu according to the season. Changing your menu by season means that the items will resurface at a consistent schedule, you can adapt to the weather, and perhaps create a cult following of your own.
Here are three things you need to consider when creating your summer menu:
Look into seasonal fruits and vegetables
The first thing you need to consider when planning your summer menu is the ingredients. Maximise the season and select ingredients that aren’t available all year-round. Using in-season ingredients is a great way to support local farmers, instead of using imported goods. Since there is a limited amount of seasonal fruits and vegetables, it easily narrows down the recipes you can use.
In the UK, the summer season is from June to August. A couple of examples of seasonal vegetables are asparagus, fennel, parsnips, peas, sweet corn, summer squash, and kale. You may opt for a creamy soup with summer or butternut squash or a fresh salad with tomatoes, kale, and onions. For fruits, there are a variety of berries such as blackcurrant, blackberries, and strawberries. These berries can be used in a zabaione or parfait.
Have vacation-styled drinks
The second way you can integrate the summer fever is playing with the associated images. Summer is about poolside vacations in exotic locales. Summer is about an active youth. You can incorporate these images into your drinks. With fruit puree suppliers, you can create your summer blend that highlights a refreshing sweetness.
When creating these vacation-styled drinks, pay attention to the overall look. Make full use of people taking photos of their food and beverages, play up the vacation vibe with vibrant colours and a small umbrella.
Add cold desserts if you do not have them yet
The third way you can change the menus is to integrate cold desserts. Early spring, autumn, and winter are very cold; summer is the only time where you can bring out cold desserts without it being an acquired taste. Ice cream sundaes, popsicles, parfaits, or mousses are some examples of cold desserts you can integrate into your menu.
Like the earlier suggestions, either keep the ingredients seasonal or at the very least thematic. If you are keeping it seasonal, tart berries can be used. If you are going for a vacation vibe, fruits like pineapple, banana, or watermelon are good options to fake the summer fever.
Not all your summer menu items have to be there throughout the summer season. For products that aren’t very sustainable to have on the menu because of the ingredients or price, add them as a promotion. You can use gimmicks like a weekend event or as a bonus item on a meal set. These small touches increase the overall appeal of the item. It is also a fun way to interact with your customers.