We all grew up looking at plated food, everyday, it’s a small palette, usually flat and round. We have stared at plates more than we have stared at framed art. We are barely surprised at how food is displayed; we love the look of it mostly because we are hungry. Chefs around the world struggle with trying to impress a diner with “new” visuals, using textures, colors, aroma, shapes, architecture, balance, and anything else they can think of. In the world of immediacy via the interweb, ideas are freely shared. It is exciting for us to see how chefs are creating uniqueness, beauty, and surprise. We particularly love the The Art of Plating, and wanted to share some of our newfound inspiration.
Burnt Jerusalem artichoke, roasted hazelnuts, salty caramel and malt by chef Søren Selin
Surprise! We love this super interactive plated moment, where guests get to smash through a layer of toasted sunchoke to see their meal, let alone taste it.
Baby vegetables: radish, carrots, purple artichoke, peas, and truffle with a tender pea condiment by chef Alain Ducasse from France
The pop of vibrant green sauce is the perfect background canvas to extenuate the beauty and contrasting colors of the heirloom spring vegetables. The 50/50 plate also brings visual organization to the organic chaos.
Mini-menu starters. From left to right: 1. Room temperature stone: amuse-bouche – 2. Chilled stone: Minced vegetables with trout roe – 3. Room temperature stone: Tomato gazpacho – 4. Hot stone: Fish croquette – 5. Warm stone: Beef gelée – 6. Cold stone: Not too sweet macaron by chef Noriyuki Hamada of Bleston Court Yukawatan from Japan
Not only do we love the fun sphere pedestals that highlight the different bites – but each stone is brought to varying temperatures from ice cold, to piping hot!
Sweet water pike grilled with summer cabbage by Rene Redzepi
The swirl of sorrel puree not only frames the plate, but adds movement to the
curved vegetables. We also love presenting the herb leaves upside down to show off their inner beauty.
Asian pear, chrysanthemum, salsify branch, and endive by [ONE] Restaurant. Photo by pocketfork.
This plate with its off center irregular infinity line of sauce embodies two of our favorite plating techniques…linear compartmentalization and negative space.
More visually delicious eats:
Cucumber Roasted in Madrone by chef Christopher Kostow
Crab with Calabrian chili, sea urchin, bottarga, and nasturtium by chef Mark Pensa
Veal tartare, quail egg, toasted brioche, and truffle ‘caviar’ by chef Mark Pensa
Langoustine and Tomatoes by chef Søren Selin
Turbot packed/baked in speck and soft juniper bush. Juniper and pine salt. An emulsion of turbot roe by chef Søren Selin
TJ Girard is a sought-after food designer and creative consultant, celebrated for staging theatrical, interactive food + beverage experiences. She now resides in California where her creativity is solar powered! TJ writes the Design Milk column called Taste.