Emotion Is What DeathbedFood Is All About.
Three Michelin-star restaurant Alinea won a James Beard Award for Outstanding Restaurant this year, deservedly so. That’s because this restaurant, run by Grant Achatz, has defined culinary innovation with their molecular gastronomy and event dining. Now, Alinea is taking their restaurant to the next level: emotion.
Achatz and team are experimenting with their new concept for pop-up dinners: jolting diners. This New York Times article explains their experimental pop-up:
Diners were given an envelope bearing a simple message: ‘Please, shut up.’
The dining room was suddenly bathed in harsh bright light as waiters in white coveralls served a monochromatic dish of Marcona almonds, clamshell mushrooms and white asparagus in a white velouté on white plates atop white tablecloths. Servers, with a finger poised over lips, signaled everyone to eat in silence.
Minutes later, the room plunged into near darkness to the ominous guitar intro of “Paint It Black.” Servers described the next dish in a frantic manner: a duck stew with mushroom, blackberry and Chinese vinegar reduction, blackened forbidden rice and fried black lentils. The food was so dark, it was difficult to tell if one had finished it.
That one-two punch, Mr. Achatz later said, was meant to convey a sense of tension and release, a ride from valley to peak along the emotional sine curve.
[deth-bed-food] adj. | 1. so good, you could die happy at 1st bite.
This is one of the most poignant developments in the dining scene I’ve heard about – ever. After all, if you could die happy at the first bite, that food is doing more than tickling your taste buds. It’s stirring emotion. Feeling like you’re at home as a 10-year-old, devouring the hamburger stroganoff made with Campbell’s Golden Mushroom Soup over egg noodles like my mom used to make. That’s comfort. That’s home. That’s DeathbedFood.