April 27/London, Ontario/QMI Agency -- Move over Japanese, Thai and Italian -- African cuisine tops the up-and-coming menu trends among Canadian restaurants.

So says the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association’s (CRFA’s) 2012 Chef Survey, which shows that, along with African food, black garlic and gluten-free beer top the list of up-and-coming trends in Canadian restaurants.

CRFA is one of Canada’s largest business associations, with more than 30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. Canada’s restaurant industry employs more than one million people in communities across the country.

Their trends hold sustenance on a variety of fronts. Up and comers are menu items that could be the next hot trend, as interest in these items is quickly increasing. Also on the list are red rice, Peruvian cuisine, vegetable ceviche, micro-distilled artisan liquor, goat meat, game bird appetizers (think duck and quail) and savory ice creams.

What’s new this year? Black garlic, a type of fermented garlic with a rich, molasses-like flavor.

More than 300 professional chefs participated in CRFA’s third annual Canadian Chef Survey, which was carried out in co-operation with the Canadian Culinary Federation and conducted by BrandSpark International, an independent marketing and product innovation research company with expertise in the restaurant and foodservice industry.

 From the April 27, 2012, Prepared Foods’ Daily Update