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What's coming for the Aussie restaurant scene in 2021?

Australian Hospitality

There can be no denying that Australia has dealt with COVID-19 very well as a nation. As such, the country has been lucky enough to keep restaurants and bars open for the majority of the year with measures in place when necessary.

For this reason, many are predicting that in 2021 the Australian restaurant scene is about to take off once again as the country (hopefully!) continues to recover from COVID and go from strength to strength. One thing is for sure, the foodie, restaurant and cafe scene sits at the heart of Australian culture. It’s a scene that is always evolving, and although competitive it is also rather lucrative when done right.

We’re looking at what will be coming for restaurants in 2021, and what people might be looking for as the foodie scene reigns supreme once again.

Amazing Restaurant Launches In 2021

Whilst COVID may have pressed pause on almost all new restaurant launches around the world, Australia was able to keep planning ahead. A more stable response to COVID means that the people of Australia can look forward to some amazing new restaurants opening in 2021. 

Some of our top picks are from around the regions are:

Society is set to be an incredible 300-seat blockbuster restaurant fronted by chef Martin Benn and partner Vicki Wild. Get excited to experience experimental, high-end Japanese-influenced cuisine because after months of delays this high end restaurant is set to open in March 2021. 

Rinaldo Di Stasio and Mallory Wall are planning to open a new Italian restaurant in Carlton, promising culture, hospitality and extraordinary food. Pizzeria Di Stasio will seat around 100 people across the inside and the courtyard and there are even rumours that it will feature a 17th-century stone fountain imported from Rome. 

Aussie eating done right is what springs to mind. Alejandro Saravia (Pastuso) is opening a restaurant dedicated to produce from Gippsland, a region in Victoria's east. Punters will experience a genuine farm-to-table experience when they head to this new venue opening in Jan 2021.

Huami is about to bring incredible Chinese cuisine to Adelaide and has high hopes to be South Australia's best restaurant. Huami will be luxurious and opulent, with three private dining rooms and a 1200 bottle wine wall that diners can feast their eyes on. 

Australia Eating Their Way To An Economic Recovery

In 2021, there’s also reason to believe that Australians will be eating out more as they make the most of their freedom and socialise while dining out. With a focus on health and wellbeing at the top of everyone’s agenda in 2020 and beyond, we’re seeing less people heading to the pubs and clubs and more people opting to spend their hard earned cash on meals out. 

In fact, in 2020 across all generations most people visit pubs for a meal (50% of Gen X, 47% of Baby Boomers, 46% of Millennials, 43% of Gen Z and 37% of Pre-Boomers).

This shift back to dining out is great for Australian businesses and restaurant culture. Recent reports have suggested that Australia may be eating their way to an economic recovery, with around 19 percent of people eating at a restaurant, café or pub at least once a week. Those who did admit to eating out regularly said they spend on average $60 on a meal, with this increasing to $96 for 35-49 year olds.

Whilst it is true that profits did plummet for the restaurant industry in March 2020 following the COVID breakout, it looks like Australians are supporting the economy and choosing to eat out more regularly post-COVID. This is a great thing for restaurant owners, and will hopefully encourage further innovation and growth of the sector.

Changing Food Preferences 

With the changing times there is also likely to be changing tastes. Here’s what could be coming to the foodie scene in Australia in 2021.

Aussie love their health foods, however reports from ADM suggest that 31% of consumers are now looking to eat foods that are suited to their health. This means natural ingredients, honest recipes and food with a conscience will be on the rise in 2021. This year, Australians are likely to want to know more about where their food comes and what it contains.

As a nation who already loves salmon, it’s hard to believe that Austrliians might actually be eating MORE salmon. But it’s true. Search results suggest that salmon was Australias #3 most popular ingredients in 2020, with the number one rising search of the year being “potato and salmon”.

Locally sourced products are likely to boom in 2021, as people appreciate the richness of Australia's fresh produce. On the one hand, consumers will be seeking clarity on ingredients and sourcing for health reasons. Post-COVID we’ve seen a shift where people are much more focused on their health and wellbeing, and this will be reflected on the restaurant scene too.

Then on the other hand, people are also more conscious of supporting local businesses and boosting the economy, so will always opt for Australian ingredients in a dish if they can.

Tech Will Carry The Australian Restaurant Scene

As we are faced with an exciting fresh start in 2021, it’s predicted that many businesses will look at their operations and consider how they can get up to speed when it comes to technology. Mobile ordering technology will give businesses not only a better way of doing things, but also a safety net if lockdowns do have to be continued.

Learn more about how restaurants, pop up event spaces and cafes can benefit from new technology that allows them to keep people safe, turn tables quicker and stay up to date with the market. 

January 25, 2021

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