Arts and Culture

Remember a few years ago when sriracha was, well… the hottest flavor on grocery store shelves? It was everywhere, from Bon Appetit’s “Flavor of the Year” issue, to rap songs, to YouTube challenge videos.

But the hot sauce’s popularity had influence in ways your average consumer might not pick up on right away.

Aaron Parker is the chief operating officer of Flavorman, a beverage development company in Louisville. He and flavorist Tom Gibson say a big drink trend they saw amidst the sriracha craze was ginger.

“Ginger, we saw a lot of that coming up,” Parker said.

Gibson interjected: “Yeah, parlaying off sriracha, that spice.”

This is an example of a drink trend Flavorman had predicted would be popular that actually did end up on store shelves.

Each December, lists are unveiled that tell us what we’ll be eating and drinking during the upcoming year. But the concept of food and beverage trends has always seemed kind of arbitrary to me.

So, when I received a news release with Flavorman’s beverage trend predictions for 2018 — which are maple, honey and botanical notes, by the way — I wondered: Where do these predictions come from?

The answer? A lot of different places.

You can find out more in the audio player above.

Ashlie Stevens is WFPL's Arts & Culture Reporter.