From food cart to restaurant chain, Halal Guys named the fastest growing restaurant. Does this announcement reflect food trends?
Consumers have many choices when it comes to restaurants. From well established brands to local eateries, the options are plentiful. Industry success can be hard fought. Recently, Halal Guys topped the fastest growing restaurant list. Does this recognition represent a growing food trend?
Starting as a New York City food cart, the Halal Guys filled a food void in its area. In 1990, the year the company started, New York City Muslim cab drivers lacked quick service Halal food. The food cart filled that void. Since then, the brand has expanded both in the U.S. and internationally. Currently, the company has “more than 350 restaurants in development world-wide.”
Halal food is basically food and drink that conforms to Islamic law. Halal, the word, can be translated to mean permissible. The food and drink served by a Halal establishment conforms to specific practices as dictated by the Islamic tradition. While there are several components, one example would be that food cannot be prepared with alcohol or bacon.
For the Halal guys, the company has gone from filling a void to a broader appeal. The brand is best known for its chicken or gyro over rice, as well as its white and red sauces. Described as “American Halal Food”, the restaurant combines “Middle Eastern flavors and Mediterranean flavors.”
This restaurant growth is a specific example of consumers wanting and seeking international foods and spurring a food trend. What started as a New York City favorite has quickly spread all over the United States. Consumers are craving bolder spices, new preparations and different cuisines. Broiled chicken and brown rice is boring. International flavors and preparation styles satisfy the want for something new.
Also, consumers aren’t intimidated by the bolder spices and different preparation methods. Through the food industry, many segments show the acceptance of international foods and cuisines. Previously, a home cook’s spice rack contained some of the basics. Now, that pantry is filled with tamarind, sriracha and numerous other spices.
While the Halal Guys may not be in every city, their growth is remarkable. They are filling the consumer demand. If this growth continues, their might be one coming to your town.