The delicious taste of science
Foodpairing, or the marriage of science and gastronomy
El Bulli, Sergio Herman and chefs in 140 countries
“As word spread within the chef community about the kiwître and my collaboration with Degeimbre, others sought out my advice, including chef Ferran Adria of El Bulli and Sergio Herman.
That same year the first version of the Foodpairing website was launched, reaching over 100,000 hits during its first month. Clearly, there was a lot of interest in my research, not only from professional chefs, but also from the food industry. Shortly after the launch, in 2009, the Foodpairing company was co-founded with Johan Langenbick and Peter Cocquyt, a former Michelin chef. Ten years later, the Foodpairing chef app is used by chefs in 140 countries around the globe – including Heston Blumenthal – and our technology is used by the world’s largest food companies to develop better products faster.”
Assisting chefs at crucial moments
“If you ask chefs what they like best about their job, the most likely response is “creating recipes”. We assist chefs during their most crucial moment: the creativity phase. We strengthen and reconfirm their intuition, while simultaneously discovering uncharted flavour territories.
The value of Foodpairing lies in the knowledge transfer and in saving time while creating. We offer science-based inspiration in seconds. A chef can gain valuable time using our tools, instead of endless trial and error.
Furthermore, the market is looking for new experiences. So, as a chef, it’s a challenge to come up with new ideas constantly. 40 per cent of younger diners choose something different each time they go out to eat. Unexpected ingredient combinations will become the norm.
But maybe the biggest value is “sparking ideas” for novel concepts. The Foodpairing tool has catalyzed numerous young entrepreneurs to develop new food concepts, like food trucks with inspiring popcorn flavours and cocktail & food bars.”
Future trends in gastronomy from a food scientist
“We’ll be 9 billion people in 2050; the only way we will be able to feed everybody is by changing the way we consume and, more importantly, the way we produce. We’ll never manage if we continue our current consumption and production patterns. By changing the way we produce, we can bring back flavour to our tomatoes, strawberries, and all the other fruits and vegetables that have lost taste.
Restaurants should use digital solutions and the data they unleash not only for more informed decision-making and improved operational execution, but also for personalizing and sharpening their services to build stronger customer loyalty. The personalization of food will help us to consume more healthily and tailor tastes to our needs and preferences.
Restaurants also need to expand their services to more than just dine-in options. Digitalization has made that possible. A lack of qualified personnel will mean automation becomes more important. Robots will take over repetitive tasks, improving the productivity of restaurants.”
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