Beer, snacks, and beer-battered trends!

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Get ready for super games and sports madness!

With big sports events coming up, engage consumers with beer-boosted trends and snack inspiration. Beer-battered foods like fries are a natural fit at bar & grill restaurants, and beer cheese is trending on appetizer and side menus (and exploding on menus with fries!). For beer pairing opportunities, uncover appetizer and side trends and see how top chains bring these to life to create craveable concepts for consumers. Pair hot snack trends with a cold one for a winning combo!

Beer battered items ...

appear on 1 in 10 menus, according to Datassential MenuTrends (YE September 2023), though this number nearly doubles for casual dining restaurants. Think beer-battered fish (especially with fish and chips), onion rings, and fries for beer-battered inspiration from casual dining operators.

Beer battered items ...

have an even higher presence at bar & grill restaurants (within the casual dining segment). Additionally, 60% of bar & grill restaurants with “beer battered” on the menu feature the term in dishes with fries, like fish and chips or beer-battered fries appetizers (Datassential MenuTrends, YE September 2023).

Food & brews go together 

More than half of consumers order food while drinking beer at sports bars (Datassential’s Sports Bars SIP Report, October 2023). For happy hours in particular, this food tends to be apps & snacks. And for sports & recreation consumers, fries have nearly universal affinity. When ideating winning beer pairings, look to apps & snacks, especially craveable fries!

Beer snack inspiration

Check out appetizer and side trends for innovative beer-pairing inspiration. Beer cheese stands out, growing on appetizer and side menus and skyrocketing as a fry sauce. Loaded tots and loaded fries are also growing, providing plenty of opportunity for other craveable toppings. For heat and spice to balance out cold beer, add top-growing appetizer and side flavors, like Nashville hot or hot honey, to wings, fries, sliders, and more!

¹ Growth on appetizers/sides menus over the past 4 years in Datassential MenuTrends, YE September 2023

² Growth on fry appetizers/sides over the past 4 years in Datassential MenuTrends, YE September 2023

Growth on appetizers/side menus over the past 4 years in Datassential MenuTrends, YE September 2023

Growth on appetizers/side menus over the past 4 years in Datassential MenuTrends, YE September 2023

Snack trends in action!

See below how top chain restaurants put a pub-friendly spin on loaded fries and apply trending appetizer and side flavors to chicken to create highly-appealing wings concepts, all ready to pair with a pint. 

Datassential Concept Testing (SCORES)

 top performer for item type, generation (>90th percentile)

 above average for item type, generation (70th to 90th percentile) 

Beer-boosted trends & snack inspiration for the win!

With the big football event and college basketball series both fast-approaching, get the “W” with consumers through craveable appetizers and snack trends. Drive traffic with beer-boosted flavors and textures, like Lamb Weston’s beer-battered fries. Or, put consumers in the tail-gating mood with trend-forward appetizers and snacks to pair with cold beer while watching their favorite games. Sports fever is coming – how will you take advantage of the excitement?

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