Is bibimbap the next big food trend?
Rice never goes out of style.
Buta + Wagyu's Bibimbap
(SPOT.ph) We called it. Back in January, we predicted that rice bowls were going to be the next big food trend. It seems fairly obvious: restaurants are shifting towards convenience and accessibility, and making the Pinoy staple easy to eat on the go is a win-win.
The country's rice movement started in 2015, with restaurants like I Am Kim, Ricing Bowl, UpRice, ArroZeria, and Ooma, but we're taking our forecast further: Bibimbap will be the du jour rice dish of 2015. Congratulations, Chef Him Uy de Baron (former head honcho of I Am Kim). You have once again paved the way.
Trends tend to spill over from the previous year. In 2015, Bulgogi Brothers launched their own series of Korean rice bowls. Meanwhile, Japanese steak shop Buta + Wagyu manages to squeeze in bibimbap (totally delicious, by the way), between their line-up of Japanese specialties. In 2016, the Relish Group jumpstarted the game with the opening of Rock and Seoul, which has adopted the bibimbap bar format that allows customers to go crazy mixing and matching toppings over rice. The flavors aren't strictly Korean, but you don't doubt what their style is anchored on. They've opened an express version called Seoul Station, too.
Korean favorite Sariwon has also come up with their own baps. Available in Beef, Chicken, and Pork, each order comes with soup, citrus iced tea, and four types of refillable appetizers. Sariwon's bibimbap is available on weekdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
This dish has even trickled down to the fast-casual level. BonChon recently released a collection of bibimbaps—the perenially sold out Bibimbowls. They come in flavors like beef and chicken for as cheap as P99.
And let's not forget that Cravings Group is set to open Rice Lane, an Asian-themed rice joint at Eastwood Mall, Quezon City.
What do you think? How many bibimbap bowls do you think you'll consume this year?