for what it’s worth

stories and stimulus from a consumer insight consultant

ADVERTISMENT VS REALITY

pundo3000

Advertisement Vs Reality is the name of a project by Pundo3000 that has photographed and compared the images on food packaging with the actual products inside. It’s no surprise to anyone to find blatant mis-advertising on food, and this site created by German journalist Samuel Mueller shows 100 of the worst in what he explains is a true light, with no additions or alterations to add effect. See some of the most unappealing items on this video.

via: Consumerist

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GUERRILLA RESTAURANT OPERATES ONE DAY A WEEK ONLY

one-day-a-week

Jean Snow points us on his blog to what may be the next step in guerrilla retail extremes: restaurants serving on one day only. Vegie Shokudou is open for lunch and dinner – but only on a Wednesday:

Néojaponisme contributor Dwayne Dixon and amazing vegan chefs Yoyo and Yuka offer up the tastiest vegan lunch in Tokyo on Wednesdays at Vegie Shokudou, a renegade restaurant inside of a bar in Koenji. Note that the restaurant operates ONLY ON WEDNESDAYS. There is a break period from 3pm-5pm, and the restaurant will be closed. Eats start at 1PM.

Jean Snow.net: Vegie Shokudou

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RESTAURANTS LET CHEFS GET INTIMATE WITH DINERS

NY chefs

Todays New York Times has an interesting article on a new breed of intimate restaurants aiming to enhance the dining experience through stronger interaction with the chefs. Citing locations in New York, Chicago and Montreal, the article details restaurants with very few tables who are taking the open kitchen concept a step further with the chef becoming a multi-tasking performer- and it seems to be appealing to both the diners and the chefs.

Grab a stool and belly up to a new brand of upscale dining, where closeness to the cook comes with your meal as routinely as bread. Although counter seating, open kitchens, and chef’s tables are not new to the scene, Momofuku Ko and a few other restaurants are reaching for a new level of intimacy. The chefs are not only cooking and plating the food, but also serving it, taking coats, recommending wine and confirming reservations.

“Everyone who works here is a chef, and everyone is also a dishwasher,” said Michael Carlson, the chef at Schwa in the Wicker Park neighborhood of Chicago, which serves elaborate multicourse menus of dishes such as parsnip custard with ice-wine vinegar caramel, candied sweetbreads and a lavender lecithin bubble. (It’s a dessert.)

The new model was inspired by sushi bars and re-engineered by the French chef Joël Robuchon in 2003 at his Paris restaurant L’Atelier de Joël Robuchon, where a counter surrounds an open kitchen. Adopters of this model across the Atlantic tend toward the young and the restless, who are interested in testing received notions not only about food but also about what a restaurant can and should be.

The decision to minimize service staff ripples throughout the meal. “We’re just cutting out the middleman,” said Sam Gelman, a sous-chef at Momofuku Ko. “It’s you eating and me cooking.”

His words reflect a sensibility about food that also drives modern eaters to seek direct contact with farmers and fishers, fromagers and foragers. “This way I can tell people myself about the food they’re eating, the wine, everything,” he said, grating a snowfall of frozen foie gras over a bowl of riesling jelly and pine-nut brittle.

NYT: Your Waiter Tonight… Will Be The Chef

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WINE CELLAR SORBETS

Cleverly combining food and wine for wine lovers throughout the country, Wine Cellar Sorbets produces refreshing sorbets made from vintage wines.
Choose your preferred vintage from a constantly changing wine list that includes a selection of Californian and New York red, white and rosé wines. Available in New York and New Jersey gourmet stores, fine restaurants and caterers, it’s a ‘cool’ new way to enjoy your favourite tipple, and such a brilliantly simple idea I’m amazed it’s only just reached the market.

Wine Cellar Sorbets

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CHICKEN IN A CONE??

I love the new concept from food stylist and artist Nir Adar; CrispyCones, which aims to serve an array of classic dishes including meatballs, ceasar salad and barbeque chicken… in an edible cone. Turning the notion of take-away food on its head, Adar fills the baked dough cones with a wide variety of sweet or savoury fillings crossing an array of cuisines, to satisfy any craving you may have. As he explains it-

“The Crispy Cone is changing the face of portable food to meet the needs of the healthy, selective and environmentally conscious consumer. Not only is the shape of the cone different than anything else out there, it’s also different in concept: Nutritious. Responsible. Delicious. Prepared with care and thought. Environmentally smart, because it leaves no waste, and uses no utensils. Made with nutritious ingredients and delivered in a smart drip-free cone that complements the delicious flavors of the food, the Crispy Cone lets you enjoy your favorite foods in a modern and environmentally-smart new way.”

Not sure that the menu constitutes healthy eating, but CrispyCones say they aim to introduce new flavors every week, apparently tailored to fit the demographics of each new location. Given the huge availability of traditional carbohydrate based fast-foods and the current interest in curing America’s obesity pandemic it will be interesting to see whether this idea takes off. Currently only available in Santa Anita’s Westfield Arcadia Shopping Mall, California, CrispyCones plans to open throughout the US and is currently looking for investors and franchisees.
CrispyCones

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