10 Catering Trends for Summer 2018

As we approach the final months of 2017, it’s time to look forward to what will be on-trend in the New Year. If you want to impress your guests and provide an unforgettable event, check out our top ten trends for catering and food for summer 2018. 


1. Get Up Close and Personal 

More intimate events with personal service, meaningful conversation, good wine, and great food leave a lasting impression.  That’s why smaller, personalised experiences will become more popular next year. Niche affairs are effective at communicating a company’s message and encouraging your guests to get involved with your brand or your event’s theme.

2. Find Comfort in (Trendy) Food 

We all love comfort food and next year will see our favourite staple dishes and foods get the designer treatment. Gourmet burgers, roasted cauliflower rice, bite-size macaroni cheese, and designer jacket potatoes will be fashionable. Look out for rolling carts with pretzels, churros and doughnuts presented in unique and fun ways.

3. The Rise of the Humble Doughnut 

Jelly or ice cream-filled, savoury, served in a sandwich or made from spaghetti. Donuts are becoming ever more inventive, and in 2018 we will see even more innovative flavours, unusual toppings and hybrid creations. Also, expect to see doughnut walls, doughnut stands, doughnut carts, and doughnut bars; doughnuts will be served on sticks, hooks and string; serve mini doughnuts with hot coffee, and bite-size doughnuts to keep your guests smiling. 

4. Fresh Farm to Table Fare 

More and more people are incorporating fresh, local ingredients in their catering choices. Not only does this support local farmers and businesses, but dishes are seasonal, and the result is far superior when it comes to taste. Pairing regional meats with local vegetables and wines, such as The Swan Valley, is also an excellent way to complement your dishes. Aim for local pairings, and you will serve foods and flavours that go together perfectly.   

5. Say it with Tacos

Tacos can be a light, crispy snack garnished with salsa, guacamole, sour cream and cheese. Or, they can be something more substantial if you provide meat or vegetable fillings, rice, chilli beans, salads and garnishes. Versatile, easy to serve and appealing to so many, they are certain to become even more popular on snack stations and food bars at events in 2018.  

6. Alternative Eating is Now the Norm 

Gluten-free and vegetarian options are no longer the exception, dairy free or low-carb is not awkward, asking for soy or almond milk doesn’t frustrate baristas, and those that have to be aware of dietary allergies and restrictions are not regarded with annoyance. Focus on fresh vegetables, raw and cooked, include plenty of grains, and choose organic in your catering. Also, keep in mind that meat plays a much smaller role in meals for many people. 

7. Food and Cocktail Matching 

Rather than offering an excellent wine to complement their guest’s meal, caterers will be crafting cocktails that coordinate with the specific tastes and flavours of their food. Cocktails can reflect personal taste, the theme of the event, or the season, as long as they pair well with the cuisine and are served with flair and style. 

8. Enable Guests to Graze and Mingle 

Grazing tables that include rustic bread, local cheeses and a variety of delicious meats will become ever more popular in 2018. Allow guests to mingle at leisure and select what they want to eat from a diverse selection of fresh fruits and seasonal vegetables, tasty side dishes, spreads and dips, all laid out on a rustic table decorated with candles, fresh flowers and whatever else coordinates with your theme. 

9. Choose Native Ingredients  

Use native Australian ingredients and incorporate local plants, herbs and spices in your catering in 2018. Think bush tomatoes and tatami apples, mountain peppers, quandongs, macadamia nuts, lemon myrtle, and wattleseed. Be sure to include kangaroo, yabbies, seafood, swordfish and emu in your food plans.  

10. It’s All About the Table Settings 

Whether it’s luxurious and opulent, or provincial and rustic, the table setting can make or break the ambience of an event. In 2018, there will be a trend for earthenware crockery, black plates and gold cutlery. Different coloured cutlery handles, such as matte black or white, or bold or pastel colours will be on trend, beautifully paired with lustrous gold, matte bronze and burnished copper. 

If you are planning an event in 2018, Samphire Catering can ensure its success with exquisite food, menus that incorporate high-quality local produce, and exceptional food service. We stay abreast of new and emerging food and catering trends to make your event a truly memorable one. Contact us to arrange to serve food which is full of delicious flavours at your next event.