Drinkable desserts are a go-to favorite when it comes to choosing a lighter dessert fare in restaurants these days. This new twist on plated-desserts is making its presence known in the pastry world and is climbing the list of hot trends.1 With endless possibilities for beverage and flavor combinations, there is something to please every customer.
Drinkable creations are growing in popularity for several reasons — one of the biggest factors is the fun and creative flavor combinations chefs are introducing. With a long list of both pastry flavors and beverage options, the opportunities to create are endless. Some have become the liquid reincarnation of more traditional desserts, such as tiramisù, while other innovative blends begin from fruit smoothies, milkshakes, ice-blended and yogurt-based drinks. Fortunately for businesses, the many ingredient options, nutritional levels, flavors and overall healthiness of drinkable desserts can be carefully customized. By offering healthier options created with fresh fruits and vitamins, you can provide a customer with a guilt-free experience.
Desserts such as a Smore-Tini or Lime and Tapioca Pearl Parfait are perfect examples of the flavors being offered by the world of drinkables. Whether you are combining candy flavors with rich liqueurs or offering luscious drinkable chocolate infused with rosemary, these desserts are perfect for enticing customers on a night out on the town or as a simple encore to any meal. Smaller portions and lower prices are becoming more important as customers are tightening their belts and wallets – this is why advertising your drinkable desserts to your customer base is key.
Along with the infinite number of flavor creations comes a variety of ingredient options for preparing these desserts. The most common methods include dry mixes, liquid that is heated prior to serving, refrigerated or shelf-stable liquid bases and ready-to-drink options. Important aspects for chefs and businesses to consider when creating these delicious combinations are the serving methods, ingredient shelf life and which additives will be used. Such additives may include fruit, protein, sweeteners, chocolate and color — all of which influence the mixture’s stability and affect preparation time.2
One of the best aspects contributing to the success of these smaller-portioned and portable drinkable desserts is the flexibility in serving time. One of the ideas behind the original creation was to invent an alternative to a coffee drink when coffee sales have been discovered to drop, around 3 p.m.3 The sweeter and more snack-like combinations offer a midday treat that is sure to be in demand.
Overall, restaurants are finding that dessert beverages add a unique flair to their menu. Explore mixing current dessert and beverage products in ways that make sense to your operation, while experimenting with new tastes, textures and ingredients to create some innovative new drink offerings.
1,2,3 Stiles, Kurt, and Mark Newman. “Drinkable Dessert Inspirations.” Food Product Design. 04 May 2007. Web. http://www.foodproductdesign.com/