Regional delicacies – the new and old trend
“No indulgence is temporary, because the impression it leaves behind is ever-lasting”, is something the famous German author Goethe, who was considered a gourmet, already knew. His eating habits are just as much handed down as his habit of occasionally bringing home-grown asparagus or fresh artichokes instead of flowers to a party. Today a tasty asparagus salad and artichokes are also among the popular and well-known delicatessen.
Delicatessen – a delicacy
For gourmets, delicatessens are the so-called “icing on the cake.“ Everybody has an idea about the meaning of the term, even though there is no clear definition for it. According to a survey by the German TV show "Markt“ (=market), most people perceive something special, something of high quality, something the average Joe cannot afford to eat every day under this term; and asked about specific products, people associate pastries and salads, thin meats and fish products, with the term delicatessen. The term “delicatessen“ his not regulated by law, which makes its commercial use discretionary. Solely German deli salads are subject to binding guidelines. For delicatessen, the main focus is on the precise ways of preparation and the special method of making them.
Among the commodity group of delicatessen products are foods of animal as well as plant origin: this includes chocolate noodles by Alb-Ggold as well as the Zapf and Kirsch salamis made by the Wein Company, the deli product line by Dittmann and Swabian specialties by Settele. And of course let’s not forget the multitude of foreign vendors, starting with the French, with whom the Italians and Spaniards have caught up in terms of delicatessen. In everyday life, delicacies only differ from delicatessen based on supply and demand as well as price range, which is to say that delicatessen can generally be found in the high-end price segment.
A poor man’s food in the old days or the changing faces of delicatessen
Fish soup from Marseille, bruschetta from Italy and hering stip (a type of hering salad) with baked potatoes from Germany originally were meals made from leftovers and thus plain fare. Chanterelle and porcini mushrooms, once food of poor people, today are expensive delicacies. A trend towards delicatessen can also be noticed in upscale restaurants. Those who don’t want to cook can treat themselves to a special meal or as a newer alternative, order a gourmet taxi and savor the exclusive meals at home.
Delicatessen on the road to success
Buying delicatessen products is trendy; everybody occasionally indulges in these special treats. Many consumers have already noticed that delicatessen don’t necessarily have to be pricey. Large chain stores such as Aldi and Rewe have recognized this as a booming market for them and increasingly place premium level delicatessen items at their deli counter or on the shelves. They immediately catch the customer’s eye, because the packaging is very classy and clearly sets itself apart from the standard range of products. The trend that started years ago with Aldi champagne continues to be on the road to success. Delicatessen from the supermarket or online retailers once more give customers a sense of having bought something special and perhaps at the same time having gotten a bargain.
Ahle Wurst from Hessen
About 65 percent of Germans consider when purchasing "always or almost always" on the regional origin of foods, according to a Forsa survey. Customers want natural and authentic foods to which they trust more as an industrial commodity. Germany has a lot of small manufacturers who produce high quality products, such as the mustard mill in Monschau or the "Weckzeit" in Cologne, which specializes in homemade chutneys. Their products are found equal footing with local products from Tuscany or Provence on the shelves of gourmet shops again.
After the "Consumer Value Monitor Food“ we live in a "yearning consumer society", in which consumers seek affiliation. Traditions are to survive - and revived, cultural landscapes are maintained. Specialties such as smoked whitefish fillet, the Hessian Ahle sausage and apple champagne offer gourmets who know everything from truffles and oysters a kick and is even trendy.
Ingrid Spicker, InterMopro.de