Dine by Design is a new column on both Untapped Paris and New York which explores food through the lens of product, interior, and restaurant design.   It will give readers a behind the scene look not merely at how food is prepared, but at how it is presented. In Paris, Diane Ruengsorn knows this topic intimately as the founder and director of Domestic Aesthetic, a design firm with close links to the restaurant industry, and from her eight years working for food magazines such as Gourmet and Saveur.

Chefs and designers are a natural pairing here in France, where I recently moved. I was drawn to how food and design were so intrinsically linked and after years of working in both fields, often simultaneously, France made sense to me. I loved how in a country so celebrated for its cuisine, food was another vehicle for artistic and visual expression. Thought goes into not only the presentation, but the experience of eating as a whole.

Take for example the  Paris des Chefs conference in January which paired internationally renowned chefs with a designer or artist. Over three days, the showcase explored the bridges between “the art of cooking and the different fields of creation.” Bertrand Grébaut of the much hyped restaurant Septime (a graphic design student turned chef) discussed the influence of design on his work with his creative director, the designer and video director Thomas Jumin. Or one of my favorite sessions where the Spanish chef Josean Alija used the individual and dried leaves of leeks to create something similar to papyrus. The result was an edible page that could be decorated and painted on.

Such explorations are well appreciated in France, even in its educational system. The École Supérieure d’Art et de Design de Reims has a nearly ten year old program devoted to food design which “questions eating habits” and focuses on food’s relationship to society.

The program’s founder, Marc Bretillot, along with collaborators Jean-Charles Amey and Earlwyn Covington also created the recently launched multimedia platform called Thinking Food Design. Through invitations sent out to chefs, designers, and anyone interested in the topic, participants document their definitions in two minute videos that answer the simple question: “What is Food Design?” Videos are grouped by categories such as “emotion,” “performance,” or “innovation.”

1 Comment

  1. […] France: A Culture of Food and Design | Untapped Paris Meet Our Partners Tom DiGiorgioThomas H. DiGiorgio, Jr. serves as President and Managing Member of both the licensed architectural and general construction firms. DiGiorgio has 21 years experience in the Architectural, Construction and Development Industries specializing in hospitality design. Read More… John Metz, JrAs chef and co-owner of Marlow's Tavern, Aqua Blue, and Hi Life Kitchen and Cocktails, John Metz is thrilling residents in the Atlanta area with cuisine that inspires. John earned his degree at the Culinary Institute of America, and began his extensive career at some of the finest restaurants in New York such as The 21 Club, Tribeca Grill, Park Avenue Cafe, Montrachet and Restaurant Daniel. Read More… Robert Schmitz Robert Schmitz is COO and VP o Business Development tasked with optimizing the potential of the Sterling Spoon brand. Robert is an influential leader and key strategist whose efforts are focused on increasing brand awareness and generating sales for the company. He brings a wealth of knowledge to the team, generated by 25 years of experience in food service. Read More… Richard E. Rivera Rivera's company, Rubicon Enterprises LLC, is a restaurant development company based in Sarasota, Florida. The company is involved in a number of operating ventures, including Corner Bar Partners, LLC and Metz Enterprises, both of which are involved in the development and operation of casual dining restaurants (Marlow's Tavern and TGI Friday's, respectively). Read More… Michael Costantini Michael Costantini is the President of Unisource Marketing Group, one of Florida's preeminent commercial food service equipment marketing organizations supporting foodservice dealers and operators. His organization provides equipment knowledge, foodservice operational expertise, and creative solutions for solving the most complex equipment requirements. Ed Dougherty Edward C.A. Dougherty joined DK Architects / Planners, inc. in 1989 on both the architectural and construction teams and is a Principal of the firm. Mr. Dougherty is a Licensed General Contractor and Manager with a proven record of innovative leadership, and successful problem-solving. Read More… Andre Capi Andre Capi, is Director of Architecture and Managing Partner at DK Architects. Mr. Capi received his Masters Degree at the Tulane School of Architecture, New Orleans, LA. Read More… Gint Raciunas Gint Raciunas is CEO of AppSuite, a leading provider of iPhone and Android application development for the Food and Beverage industry. Read More… Forum Topic […]

Leave a Comment