The crossroad between interaction design and food/drink has been explored more frequently in recent memory as sculptors, designers, artists, and makers stretch the bounds of what creates a culinary experience. So far we have seen bread that has been designed to act as a scouring sponge for cleaning up the remains of a plate, cookies with ‘milk dunking’ grips, and redesigned utensils that alter the way existing foods taste. But perhaps none of these concepts has explored what most people would consider the ultimate luxury in dining: a ten-course meal. Industrial designer Jake Pettry has created (and narrated) a unique new way of experiencing the ten-course meal in a culinary territory void of glasses, plates, bowls, forks, knives, and spoons.
Let the Tasting Begin…
Dégus is a 10 course tasting concept that inspires discovery and curiosity by presenting eating as a participatory experience during which guests are immersed in a performance complementing flavor, sense, and dialog.
(The following text follows the intended sequence of events as described by designer Jake Pettry)
NAPKIN : the cloth clings delicately to its stand until you gently release it by pulling down lightly. The tasting begins as your waiter fills each water glass with chilled sparkling or still water.
COCKTAIL : an olive sphere with two distinct bite textures: a nitrogen frozen outer shell created with sodium alginate and a liquid center of vodka and olive pureé
NO HANDS : three bite pairings pierced on the tips of gently bending skewers expanding the limits of taste and participation. Eat them by bending over to slide the food from the tip into your mouth. The physical movement of bending forces you to exhale and inhale, enhancing flavors and sensations
TUBE : the delicate texture of caviar is retained atop hand-cast glass chilled half-cylinders. Scoop the caviar with a porcelain spoon that imparts no flavor or texture
FLIGHT : six cubes of cheese with smoky undertones are presented floating above a wood plank. The aroma of applewood chips wafts from within the metal grate complementing the complex notes of the aged cheese. Remove the skewers one by one, placing them in the metal discard cup
GRIP : a cube of smoked meat presented on the tip of a robust hand grip. Grab tightly and bite the meat
WEDGE : cantilevered racks slung with transparent sheets of ginger gelatin framing a circular plate of smoked fish
ROPE : an edible rope (not pictured) connecting two weighted cylinders requires delicate handling and a bit of shameless teeth baring as you bite in, breaking the rope in two and severing the relation between them
STANDS : a variety of textures and flavors can be displayed and eaten from the circular plate hovering over a metal stand. Lift the surface with the handle, tilt, allowing the food to slide into your mouth
CUBES : a pair of pressed glass cubes inverted from one another presenting food variations and differing textures. The cubes may be chilled as required
BLOCKS : presenting dollops of dessert on planks cantilevered from weighted stands that contrast the organic shaping of food. Remove the wooden plank, bring to mouth, lick dessert from surface
(Images via Jake Pettry)