Our customers are always challenging us to help them create signature menus. With our background in farming, we have always looked at fresh fruit as a perfect solution to injecting creativity into your restaurant or foodservice operations menus.
Focusing on seasonal fruit is always my first option. Additionally, being creative with unique varieties, offering a locally sourced selection, and providing a selection of region-specific seasonal fresh fruit on a global scale can provide a more appealing experience for the epicure. Break the mold, don’t be afraid to, and provide fresh fruit diversity on your menu throughout the year to keep it interesting.
A good starting point is to look at how fresh fruit can fit into the parts throughout your day. Our advice is to be creative throughout the day with your fresh assortment to create impactful, visually appealing fruit creations that will get your guests coming back for more. Find ways to pair fresh fruit with accouterments that shift from savory and sweet throughout the day and keep the guest interested in what’s next. The uniqueness factor goes a long way and change is something that will always be talked about. Create an experience with your fresh fruit assortment, not just a standard fruit cup. It’s culinary, have fun!
From both a taste and aesthetics standpoint and with a nod towards your P&L, we suggest creating a seasonal strategy. We work with our Sid Wainer customers to gain an understanding of the fresh fruit seasons. Knowing the seasons, especially the local ones and being closely connected to the local ecosystem can provide an intuitive-like understanding of what should be on the menu in terms of fresh fruit. Being in tune with the local agriculture environment also allows you to better understand when your fresh fruit selection and menu items should be updated. Each local environment is different and that allows for some creative room to introduce rare or out of season fresh fruit from globally sourced regions. At Sid Wainer & Son, we provide our chefs with a seasonal menu planner that helps them better understand availability and seasonality.
By listening to the needs of our customers, we have been able to create solutions that further enable the ability to be creative and still meet P&L responsibilities. Prepared, fresh, and consistency in quality eliminates labor wastes. Our prepared salads allow for a lean prep time with a guarantee that the product will be uniform each time. Our fresh prepared salads allow for a higher yield in the overall product.
It is also important that you understand the purchase of fruit from a value perspective and not just price. We know that today’s chef with the reality of the $15 minimum wage is always seeking efficiency as it relates to waste. So be sure to heighten your fruit yields by using the highest quality produce available.
That’s why at Sid Wainer, we have such an incredibly strong focus on quality and care of all of our fruit and produce we distribute. Our goal is to shorten the time between the farms and kitchens to create a higher yielding product. In the chances that the product turns before use, you can use the fruit to make homemade jams and compotes, juice the fruit or add it as an ingredient in baked goods.
Many of our customers have come to us as their dining patrons ask about the balance between sugar/nutrition and fruit. As far as we are concerned natural fresh fruit provides good nutritional yield and it is well known to provide a variety of beneficial antioxidants when consumed. There is nothing like biting into a freshly picked fruit.
With the change in how restaurants and foodservice operators market their menus, fruit offers a wonderful story to tell on Instagram and through social media. For the most part, fruit is vibrant in color and texture and possesses a wonderful camera ready appeal. From freshly sliced, to creating something unique such as dragon fruit salsa bowls, utilize the color and texture of fruit to enhance your food styling appeal and make it “Instagrammable”. Plant based nutrition is big – it has been trending and continues to trend. Consumers are demanding more fresh produce and plant based menu items for dietary and social responsibility concerns.
An exciting visual look can also be enhanced with dried fruit. Our dried fruit is most popular with bar service and dessert programs with our partners. Our dried fruit line provides not only the quality tastes chefs look to achieve in a cocktail or dessert menu item, but also offer as a wonderful way to garnish a menu item and further its appeal.
Our Sid Wainer sales team is here to help the restaurant and foodservice professional build a profitable fruit strategy. We receive an abundance of inquiries about this subject regularly. Give us a call at 800.423.8333 and speak to one of our specialty produce experts – we are always here to help and offer valuable advice on profitable menu strategy.