Chefs come to terms with 'foodography'

  • 14/07/2014

For some people, the temptation to take a photo of their food is greater than actually eating it.

When you're dining out, showing it off on social media seems to be the next logical step. But it's a habit some people are struggling to swallow.

When chef RJ Cooper opened Rogue 24 in Washington DC three years ago, he made diners sign a contract promising to leave their camera phones at home.

"I was very, very anti-photograph," he says. "Don't bring the cell phone in the restaurant. Don't snap photos of our food."

He worried it would distract other customers. He also worried how some of his dishes might look.

"I've put out some ugly food, I mean really ugly food. But the flavours have been fantastic."

But the memorial food post has become such an integral part of eating, some diners won't hit the dining room without their cameras.  So, Mr Cooper decided to lift the ban.

"We love our guests. We need our guests to display our craft, so we need to be able to adapt to the guests needs as well.

"These images of the restaurant make it around the internet at lightning-fast speed, so everybody sees them and wants to emulate them."

Washington Post food editor Joe Yonan says some chefs are concentrating too much on how the dish looks.

"There is so much tweezing and garnishing happening after the food is cooked that it's not hot anymore by the time it reaches your table," says Mr Yonan. "But I think we diners have something to do with that too. The dish comes to the table and nobody can touch anything because everybody has to take a picture first."

Mintwood Place chef Cederic Montpillier says "foodography" can be inspiring.

"I am influenced, too, by Instagram, all the pictures I see online," he says. "I am using them. I want to be part of the movement."

And with the internet's seemingly insatiable appetite, restaurants will have to find a balance between food that satisfies and meals ready to tweet.


source: newshub archive