It would seem that playing with your food has graduated from the rungs of childhood taboo and become tastefully de rigueur, as proven at The Experimental Food Society Spectacular held earlier this month.
Founded by foodie and PR maverick Alexa Perrin in January 2010, this fourth spectacular was hosted in East London’sThe Old Truman Brewery, where culinary creatives set up shop (temporarily) to introduce us to their pioneering puddings or innovative eating methods. The organisation’s aim is to challenge our perception of food and eating, providing “an awe-inspiring assemblage of food magicians, jellymongers, sonic food artists, cake sculptors, gastronomic tailors, culinary cabaret troupes and one-of-a-kind dining conceptualists.”
Not knowing what to expect I braced myself for cheese sculptures and meaty mosaics to rival Heston Blumenthal’s multi-species hybrid roasts. However, I was pleasantly surprised by sophisticated sweets, namely the Stilton & Red wine and the Salted Whiskey Caramel liquid nitrogen ice-creams from ‘Lick Me I’m Delicious’.
Innovative methods of consumption included breathable teas from the ‘The Breathable Tea Room’ by ‘Camellia’s Tea House’. This concept takes a relaxed cuppa even further with airy, effortless teas for inhaling rather than swilling, the lingering vapours even posses healing benefits i.e. Antiviral tea and Beautiful Skin tea.
The ‘Meringue Girls’, also known as trained chefs Alex and Stacey, are taking on the faddish cupcake and putting meringues back on the front line of after-dinner foods. These simple sweets are dressed up like Miami Beach Barbies with swirls of fuchsia, lime, coral, bright berries and sprinklings of nuts. Flavours include Pistachio & Rosewater, Gin & Tonic, Pina Colada and Matcha Green Tea.
Foodie fans with historical inclinations could invest in a bottle of The Robin Collective’s Historical Bitters, infused with moisture scientifically extracted from interesting locations. Their experimental elixirs hail from the walls of the Churchill War Rooms, Alfred Hitchcock’s quarters and more. The process of harnessing these vapours from ageing architecture may be complicated but these little bottles of history are easily paired with a plethora of cocktails and spirits.
The Experimental Food Society is the first of its kind in the UK and in the world.
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*Featured image by experimental food photographer Sam Hofman
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