" ... The year in flavor will be heavily influenced by bitter, warm and earthy notes," said Kevan Vetter, executive chef at McCormick. "We see America's palates embracing stronger flavors -- high-impact combinations that are anything but subtle. For example, bold bitter greens will be appreciated for their assertiveness, tamed with the licorice-like addition of caraway -- one of the 10 pairings in this year's report. The warm and earthy duo of roasted cumin and chickpeas is another expression of the year's big flavors."
In this report from Gourmet Retailer. Seems a bit out of scope for this blog, but really not. In the 80s I was involved in a number of advanced food product blending problems, notably coffee. We used advanced modeling techniques to produce standard flavors at reasonable prices, based on a continually changing agricultural commodity. I am still an amateur chef. There continues to be a strong evolution towards bolder and stronger flavors in North America. I can remember when just a few drops of Tabasco was considered radical.