Favorite Twitter account of the week (maybe the month): @WeWantPlates, which posts photos and descriptions of restaurant food served on everything other than an actual plate. (I’m still trying to decide if the appetizers in a sneaker is a joke or serious, which says… something.) Current favorite: a mojito in a rusty tin can. Great for a laugh, worth a follow.
Ikea’s “Concept Kitchen” Is Heavy on Tech
How will we behave around food in ten years? That’s the question Ikea and IDEO posed to design students, and from it comes some amazing ideas. The Concept Kitchen 2025 project is full of ideas around food storage, food waste, and actual cooking, with a healthy dose of added technology as you’d imagine.
A few favorites: Creative Cook, featuring digital guidance to learn cooking skills; Ikea Fam, which projects holographic images of others that teach you how to cook (a virtual cooking class, basically); and Family Kitchen, which features “digital recipe cards” displayed on the counter and the ability to both shoot and stream video of cooking techniques and ideas. Awesome stuff.
On Wait Lists, Ticketing, and the Future of the Reservation
Ticketing — that concept that always seems to creep back into C+T newsletters without actually making waves (yet) — is in the news again, this time in Bloomberg Business Week. The piece is another interview with Tock’s Nick Kokonas, but is also a comprehensive look at the restaurant reservation as it stands, and points toward why some people think it’s a seriously antiquated process. Ticketing, Kokonas argues, takes all of the guesswork out of reservations. Dates and times are clear, and expectations are set in the form of pre-paying for your meal, significantly reducing (or eliminating altogether) instances of cancellations.
There’s also more details about Tock the service: restaurants can require diners to prepay for their meal, or pay a deposit toward an a la carte menu. It costs just under $700 and will come with some analytics tools, too.
The piece (and associated poorly-designed infographic) is a great look at the current state of the reservations space; probably the best one to date. But enough with all of this predicting — I am very excited to see this system launch and observe consumer reaction. New concepts are exciting. New concepts that stick are game-changing.
Questlove Instagrams His Meal at Modernist Cuisine
Who they’re wearing is yesterday’s question — we’re currently curious about what celebs are eating. Thanks to social sharing, we no longer have to remain in the dark about our favorite famous person’s diet. A particularly awesome recent example: Questlove took a series of photos of a 14-course meal at Modernist Cuisine headquarters. (I only wish the photos were bigger!)
…to the newly redesigned MAD site, at madfeed.co. The new site is an amazing resource of ideas from past MAD events — interviews, conversations, demonstrations, tips, essays. Such a great collection of content. Worth a look.