Real or fake? Below are eleven food trends and concepts that could be real or made up. It's up to you to guess which is which. (Let us know in the comments section.) After all, who would've thought there would be cupcake trucks driving around Denver selling the sugar high best known for brightening elementary school birthday parties? Answer: Nobody. So take your best stab with these food trends and let us know which ones you think are fake. (Trends reported on or created by Westword staff).
|If this exists, so do other food trends.|
Homemade Chocodile Truck
Yes, Chocodiles, the elusive Hostess snack cake -- where can one buy a box of these, anyway? -- is coming back. Well, not the Chocodile exactly, but a homemade version of one with local ingredients. The husband-and-wife duo starting up this venture is taking aim at Denver's cupcake truck trend, and with the trendy pastries in the Chocodile cross-hairs, there may be a indie pastry king on the front range.
Happy Hour H-O-R-S-E League
One gastropub in Denver is taking its fare to the basketball court -- well it's a former concrete pad that used to be the foundation an adjacent building -- but they're turning it into a half-court where imbibing patrons can take their best shot for cash. The catch? They have to drink three of the bar's incredibly hoppy microbrews that boast a wince-inducing 9.5 percent ABV.
Sawyer T's coffees
|It just tastes better when you grind your own beans, no?|
At the Sawyer T's coffee shop, customers get to experience the entire process of coffee, not just the drinking of it. First, they select one of forty extremely high-price coffee varieties from around the world. Then they roast it and grind it themselves and after brief instructions, use the cappuccino or espresso machine to make it themselves, including the foam.
Gourmet condiment packets
|Ketchup is so played out.|
Ketchup, mustard, relish, soy sauce. The packets of these savory sauces sit on the door shelves of our refrigerators for years. But they're kind of ... boring. That's why one start-up company is looking to capitalize on the growing trend of gourmet food delivery with condiment packets for a refined palate, or for those who consider it very important to appear as though they possess discriminating tastes. Bacon aioli, herbed butter and bone marrow condiment packets should be available in East Coast cities like Boston, New York and Washington D.C. sometime in 2011.
Canned food goes upscale
|Lower-class chic -- it shows you recognize the recession!|
Local farmers -- well not in Colorado just yet -- are getting involved, too, looking for trendy ways to market their regional produce to fickle eaters who nonetheless want to make going out for dinner trendy. French-cut green beans, yams, peas and tomatoes are the side dishes in this restaurant shaped like a can (imagine a mini grain silo). Of course, there's meatier options, too, which thankfully don't come in a can.
|When you do a cocktail scavenger hunt, you get the added bonus of using Foursquare to check-in places.|
Friday night happy hours are fun, but who wants Skyy vodka or Jack Daniels mixed with olives from Spain, when you can acquire beverages from local microdistilleries and ingredients grown nearby? Join your friends on a scavenger hunt. The lead cocktologist tweets each ingredient and your team has to find it in Denver and bring it to the bar where a tender will mix it all up for you on site.
Pop-up thrift store
|The only thing that can make thrift-store shopping trendier? Put "pop-up" in front of it.|
Looking for a change of scenery? How about a change of clothes. At the pop-up thrift store, you'll buy the clothes right off someone else's backs, or trade with someone for something that's still warm.
|It's a celebration, bitches. Time to celebrate your body.|
Strip joints are so '80s. At Body Positive, a staff of heavily tattooed and pierced male and female performers take off their clothes on stage to highlight how beautiful we are underneath our clothes. A DJ spins the latest club music.
|"Can you believe how much beer we found without labels?!"|
It's a buyback program for beer drinkers who want to take it up a notch. Tired of drinking mass-produced swill? Bring in your Coors, Miller or Bud and receive a free sixer of the latest seasonal offering from a local brewer.
|Plastic lunchboxes not only show you're willing to stand out, but that you're also Greener than your irresponsible co-workers.|
Food trucks are already helping the environment by doing away with to-go packaging. Take your green awareness up a notch -- and go back in time to your grade school lunch period -- by bringing your own lunchbox (Superman, Smurfs, Spongebob and Scooby Doo will all do) to the LunchBoxTruck and take away a meal that looks like it was made by Mom. Tuna sandwich. Check. Peanut butter crackers. Yup. Grapes and a Capri Sun complete one option. No one is served unless they bring their own lunchbox, and prizes are awarded for the most retro-looking one.
Stone Soup Party
|"Hmm, yes these will do nicely."|
A local restaurant is hosting Stone Soup nights, where diners bring in whatever they have around the house. For a fixed price menu, a chef takes it all and prepares meals for everyone.