Boring tableware, premeasured salt, and Emeril
With an emphasis on media at this year’s conference, the organizers honored TV cooks from all over the world, including Joël Robuchon, Heston Blumenthal, and, yes, Emeril Lagasse. While I can appreciate the desire to embrace new media, it was jarring (to say the least) to have Emeril representing the best of food on U.S. television.
The cooking of Davide Scabin is inspiring, and I’d eat it any day of the week, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to buy into his patents. First, he showed the Identikit. Five sprays (sweet, salty, bitter, etc.) are used to determine your taste identity so that you can become a card-carrying member of the Identikit community. Then there was the Scabin Salt System, which peddles premeasured tablets of salt. I’ll stick to measuring spoons and scales.
Yes, it’s modern cuisine—I get it. That doesn’t mean that every serving plate needs to be a rimless rectangular slab with no personality. Once upon a time, tableware served to enhance the diner’s experience; it’s a concept that’s ripe for a revival. Maybe next year.