Gone are the days of restaurants being ‘jack of all trades, master of none’, today’s eating out market is about carving out distinct market positions, not just on price but, more importantly, on the food served.

Within reason, it doesn’t matter so much what cuisine we’re talking about, the point is that the new chains/venues present themselves as specialists (think of chains such as Pho, GBK, Wahaca). And at the moment, I’ve got ribs on my mind: short ones, baby back ones, ones served alongside half a BBQ’d chicken or pulled pork which is cooked so slowly that I’m salivating just thinking about how it melts in your mouth… yes my friends one of the big flavour trends for 2011 is American BBQ food.

Evolving from the growth in steakhouses in 2010, this year there are a flood of new menu developments, restaurants and restaurant chains dedicated to all things BBQ:

  • Jamie Oliver opened Barbecoa in late 2010. Described as ‘a celebration of of the relationship between fire and food’ the menu uses a variety of cooking techniques such as fire, smoke, wood and charcoal.
  • Bodean’s is already an established BBQ chain in London. In May 2011 it launched its first mass retail products: its two distinct sauces Smoked Hickory and Hot Chipotle, are now being sold in 141 Sainsburys outlet, priced at