Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development
Chicken Lettuce wraps with sesame-soy chicken, carrot, green onion, cashews, five-spice wonton strips, iceberg lettuce

By Flavor & The Menu
April 3, 2019

Jason Tsiames

The fact that Chicken Lettuce Wraps are a best-selling menu item at a pizza brewpub may come as a surprise, but there are two big reasons it works: The execution of the dish is spot on, and it exemplifies the lighter but flavor-focused fare that today’s consumers want.

At Oggi’s, guests build their own, choosing from sesame-soy marinated chicken breasts, carrot, green onion, cashews and crispy five-spice wonton strips. “It has complex and bold flavors that intertwine perfectly, and it’s wrapped in an iceberg lettuce cup to hold it all together nicely,” says Executive Chef Jason Tsiames. “If you want an additional kick, we serve it with our hot Chinese mustard on the side.”

Offered as an appetizer on Oggi’s menu, it is one of the top sellers. “Customers even order it as an entrée. It’s a fun item to eat—you have a bit of customization with the sauces, wontons and shredded carrots,” says Tsiames. “Also, the combination of textures and flavors makes it incredibly delicious.”

After testing a number of different types of lettuces, he landed on iceberg as the carrier. “Iceberg has a fresh crunch to it that doesn’t overpower any of the other flavors.”

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