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Volume 5 | Issue 02

February 12, 2019

Reimagined Retro


It’s time to bring a little kitsch to your kitchen! Nostalgic eats like sloppy joes, deviled eggs and corn dogs are being reimagined to bring comfort food appeal to today’s menus. These ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s classics can be elevated with premium ingredients, on-trend condiments and other distinctive touches that nod to the past while embracing current consumer preferences. And the retro cuisine trend doesn’t just reflect meals that came from your grandmother’s house. On the flip side, upscale steakhouse-style dishes that were in danger of disappearing from menus forever have inspired chefs to adapt classic recipes in a more contemporary way. Consider the current popularity of raclette—shaping up to be the fondue of the 21st century. Whimsical, cheeky and craveworthy, retro-inspired dishes are truly of the moment!

You've never seen shrimp and grits like this before! Watch our SHRIMP AND GRITS SKEWERS WITH LOBSTER GRAVY recipe demo and bring this reimagined classic to your menu with ease. View full recipe.

In a nod to the vintage craze, recipes based off childhood favorites are a great way to bring the trend to your menu. Custom Culinary® products are perfect for adding savory flavor in easy-to-use formats.


Jalapeño Deviled Eggs
These nostalgic appetizers bring the heat, as egg yolks are combined with mayonnaise and Custom Culinary® Gold Label Jalapeño Relish. Dress the serving plate with Gold Label Harissa for even more color and spice.
View Recipe

Food Truck Poutine
Serve up this Canadian-inspired classic with a base of french fries or tater tots topped with cheddar cheese and Bourbon gravy, made with Custom Culinary® PanRoast® Brown Gravy and Gold Label Kentucky-Style Bourbon Sauce.
View Recipe

Triple Play Grilled Cheese
Upgrade a childhood favorite with layers of Custom Culinary® Bacon Onion Marmalade spread on sourdough, topped with provolone, blue cheese and pale ale macaroni and cheese made with Gold Label Pale Ale Cheese Sauce, along with pepper Jack and sharp cheddar. 
View Recipe

Hearty Chicken Soup with Ancient Grains
A colorful, appealing assortment of vegetables and grains elevates this chicken soup beyond expectation, featuring Custom Culinary® Gold Label True Foundations™ Chicken Base.  
View Recipe

Macaroni con Queso
For an unbeatably rich and creamy spin on mac ‘n’ cheese, combine Custom Culinary® Master’s Touch® Southwest Flavor Concentrate, Gold Label Chicken Base, half-and-half, cheddar cheese, green chilies and onion and fold into elbow pasta with chopped tomatoes and cilantro—then top with Monterey Jack and crushed tortilla chips and bake to perfection.  
View Recipe


Deviled Crab Benedict
Lump blue crab mixed with creamy Custom Culinary® Pimento Cheese, stuffed back into two crab shells and topped with buttery cornbread crumbs, then baked until golden brown. Topped with poached eggs and Custom Culinary® Gold Label Hollandaise Sauce; served with flaky biscuits.

Peking Duck Skillet
Savory confit duck served in a sizzling skillet with scallions, soy-marinated shiitakes and Chinese broccoli, topped with a fried egg, crispy duck skin and a rich, tangy Custom Culinary® Orange Demi-Glace.

Cherry-Glazed Pork Chop
Double-cut pork chop, pan-roasted in brown butter, rosemary and sage, finished with a sweet and sour cherry gastrique made with Custom Culinary® Brandy Cherries Jubilee Sauce and cider vinegar. Served with roasted chestnut and dried cherry wild rice pilaf and fire-roasted glazed carrots.

Steak & Fromage
Thinly sliced ribeye steak smothered in buttery Custom Culinary® Raclette Cheese Sauce and broiled to a golden brown. Served on a crusty toasted French baguette with Custom Culinary® Gold Label Wild Mushroom Tapenade.

Chicken Pot Pie Fritters
Homestyle Custom Culinary® Chicken Pot Pie Filling studded with juicy pulled chicken, carrots, peas and onion, breaded in cracker crust and fried to a golden brown. Finished with fresh sliced chives.


Rich gravies, sauces and bases from Custom Culinary® serve as the foundation for classic retro dishes.


  • Pimento Cheese
  • Orange Demi-Glace
  • Brandy Cherries Jubilee Sauce 
  • Chicken Pot Pie Filling
  • Raclette Cheese Sauce
*Products are customized; please contact your Custom Culinary® representative for more information.


For more information about our NEW Custom Culinary® Authentic Latin Flavors, download our product brochure.


Download your free copy of our all new white paper: “14.6 Billion Reasons to Understand Gen Z.” 


Chef Talk

Chef Michael Smith discusses how “Retro” inspired food is truly becoming one of the hottest trends out there.

FlavorIQ® enables our customers' growth and success by approaching the creation of customized solutions with a bold mix of expertise, aspiration and curiosity. We develop unique products, menu concepts and "gold standard" flavor delivery systems, meeting the requirements of our customers today and anticipating their emerging needs, too. The opportunities we identify for operators and food manufacturers on a global scale are rooted in a deep understanding of the culinary arts, sensory science, consumer insights and food science. Our ultimate goal? Innovation without limits.



Carly Fisher, “Cheese to Please,” Flavor & The Menu, October 25, 2018.
Dan Myers, “Cheese Balls and Other Retro Foods That are Primed for a Comeback,” The Daily Meal, January 4, 2017.
Dan Myers, “No More Crab Louie? 11 Menu Classics That Have Almost Disappeared,” The Daily Meal, May 4, 2017.
Heather Lalley, “Newcomers to the Retro Luncheonette,” Restaurant Business, August 15, 2017.
Mike Desimone and Jeff Jenssen, “Classic Comfort Food Makeovers,” Wine Enthusiast, accessed January 2019.