WHY IS THERE A PSYCHOLOGIST IN THE KITCHEN? Gastrophysics dining
How do colour, aroma, texture and even sound affect how you experience flavour? And do we all experience flavour in the same way? Do certain foods taste sweeter while stroking velvet? Will ‘sonic seasoning’ one day replace the salt cellar? If you can’t smell a meal, what happens to your experience of flavour? The newly launched chef’s table by Kitchen Theory explores the emerging science of ‘gastrophysics’ and looks to answer all these questions and more through a 13 course multisensory dinner.
The Gastrophysics Chef’s Table in High Barnet (North London) is the latest project by Kitchen Theory, the cutting-edge dining design studio founded by Chef Jozef Youssef. Built on Jozef’s research, this immersive experience takes diners through a 13-course multisensory menu that explores the science and psychology behind how we perceive flavour.
“We don’t manipulate or distract the senses, the chef’s table incorporates lights, sounds, aromas and even a projection mapped table to create a rich multisensory experience that works to support delicious food. Our desire is simply to heighten the guests’ mindful and sensory appreciation of our dishes and the flavours within”, Jozef says. Over the past five years, Jozef has collaborated with leading experimental psychologist Professor Charles Spence of Oxford University, with recent topics of research including the role of smell in experiencing flavour, or how sound might affect the seasoning of a dish. Jozef and his team have translated this research into a series of carefully crafted courses to encourage diners to question and understand a little of how they’re tasting food.
Guests start their journey with a welcome drink reception in the gallery and move around the studio to be introduced to some of the ideas and thinking behind the emerging science of gastrophysics, before sitting down to enjoy the menu. Each course is designed to engage all the senses. Dishes such as ‘Bouba and Kiki’ (pictured above, provoke questions about how something as simple as the shape of food (round or angular) can affect the perception of a dish.
Chef Jozef Youssef has worked in some of London’s leading kitchens, including that of Michelin star chef Helene Darroze at The Connaught Hotel and the Dorchester Hotel before setting up Kitchen Theory in 2010. The Kitchen Theory team also create bespoke menus for private and corporate events, and offer chef masterclasses to discover some of the techniques behind Jozef’s cooking.
The evening costs £160 for 13 courses, including a welcome drink, and selection of wines and cocktails paired to the dishes. The space can also be booked for private groups of up to ten and includes exclusive use of the studio for the evening. The Gastrophysics Chef’s Table is open Tuesday to Sunday with reservations taken up to two months in advance.
For more information and bookings visit www.gastrophysics.co.uk
Twitter & Instagram: @Kitchentheory
Kitchen Theory, Unit 9a Alston Works, Falkland Road, Barnet EN5 4LG
Lulu Razzaq – firstname.lastname@example.org – 07854517275
High resolution images for download here: https://app.box.com/v/gastrophysics-media
Video trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bj65EpXN0IY