Archive for the ‘food and drink’ Category

Wine Labels: rebirth of authentic Chinese design?

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

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I must admit (and ashamed that), I’m not well-versed in Chinese (or Asian) art/design history, but this short article from PSFK, got me connecting some dots. It looks like China’s on the verge of a new design revolution (of course, among other things), where the Chinese embrace their cultural heritage and contemporize it.

Not too long ago, Chinese wine connoisseurs had a diverse range of wine selections with amazingly intricate and detailed design packaging. But after foreign imported wines began entering the Chinese market, many of these wine brands died off, along with their special wine design aesthetic.

Just look at the ingredients of these wines, there’s grape, rice, sorghum, millet, and even more rarely seen these days are Chinese gooseberry, sweet-smelling osmanthus, cherry, longan, apple and tangerine flavors.

The thought of these unique labels and ingredients remind me of an LA Soda Pop Shop, who carries over 500 varieties of naturally sweet and flavored sodas, free of high-fructose corn syrup.

As creativity and confidence creeps back into the minds of Chinese designers, it’s possible that a distinct Chinese wine label aesthetic will once again bloom and quench the thirsts of those who remember when wine had flavor and beauty.

Ditto.

via PSFK

ABC (Already Been Chewed) Cookie Cutters and Uniqueness

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

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Hoping that everyone had a great holiday season and a wonderful new year!

I was itching to make this post earlier, but couldn’t give away the gift I used for my family Secret Santa. So, here it is -adorable holiday cookie cutters by WorldwideFred that were found during holiday shopping in NYC. Oddly (or not so oddly), I found them at Henri Bendel, located at 712 5th Avenue.

Initially, I would have never expected such a quirky gift from a prestigious fashion retailer, but after being delighted to have found a unique gift, I made the connection –uniqueness. Retailers are constantly on the search to differentiate themselves and be trend setters. They need to offer clients and customers a reason to come back. Is that reason pure product quality? Affordability? Luxury? Variety? It’s a combination of a many differentiators which range from the convenience of a one-stop-shop or being a specialty store to selling the customer service experience. Regardless the exact strategy at Henri Bendel, I was happily surprised and excited to have found WorldWideFred products there and would certainly go back to find that ‘special’ gift. It seems like a mission accomplished for both retailer and gift-hunter.

Betsy VanLangen photos = people + materials

Saturday, December 19th, 2009

Betsy VanLangen has some provocative works with a great mix of materials (and food) with people in her portfolio. Very creative. Love it!

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Sushi as an iconic shape

Saturday, December 19th, 2009

Apologies for the lack of posts this past month! I’ve been busy doing some pre-holiday travel to Hong Kong and NYC to visit family and friends. Now, on with the post…

A recent giveaway on NotCot reminded me of some links I had been collecting. First off, Japanese food is one of my favorite cuisines and as I was catching up with RSS feeds saw this Do’s and Don’t of sushi etiquette. A few things I definitely learned here! Like, dipping the fish and not the rice into the soy sauce. Hmm.. this would make an interesting place-mat for a sushi restaurant…
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via TheWorldsBestEver

Sushi has been a constant trend in both the design and culinary worlds. As a very recognizable and iconic cuisine, the shapes, contents, and form of sushi is easily transferable to other objects. Even by changing the materials and contents of the ‘sushi’, we can still make the association through form and color… what do you think? See a collection of sushi toys after the jump and share your thoughts in the comments! (more…)

Packaging: snails in snail poop?

Friday, November 6th, 2009

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Seriously? Packaging from snail poop?

Product designer Manuel Jouvin partnered with Sylvie Pierru, a snail farmer in Picardie (France), to create this “Dejection Molding” packaging. The packaging, used for cooked snails, is created by feeding colored paper to the pre-cooked snails which changes the excrement color and then molded into a container.

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During my researches, I pointed out that colored paper has an influence on color snail excrements. In partnership with Sylvie Pierru, a snailfarmer in Picardie (France), we created packagings made of snail excrements and destinated to cooked snails. They are envisaged in the molding cellulose process by replacing recyclable paper by snail dejections.

A lovely expression and use of the full life cycle of a simple little snail.

via Dieline

‘Fresh Label’ food packaging is brilliant

Monday, November 2nd, 2009

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Fresh Label uses the hourglass to represent time that food has been packaged. When ammonia is released from the food, the label where the barcode is located changes color and can no longer be scanned at check-out.

False labeling on food is a worldwide concern. Many consumers carefully check the food labels, however, expiry dates typed on the labels in characters are easily faked and there is a limit for its reliability.

To solve such problem, we suggest a food label which changes its color by reacting to ammonia given off by food when it is becoming spoiled. When the food is no longer edible, the food label makes a barcode non-scannable and non-purchasable with pattern. This food label is reliable and difficult to counterfeit since it directly reflects freshness.

Learn more about Fresh Label and To-Genkyo via PSFK.

the future of food by Philips Design

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009

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Looking at how we currently source and eat our food with today’s social trends, Philips Design conceptualized the possibility that could exist in 15-20 years. The first of 3 concepts shown above is the “Nutrition Monitor” which helps visualize the amount of food each person in the household eats and the nutritional needs of the individual. It tells the user the amount to eat based on the their health and body requirements.

These beautifully simplified concepts from Philips Design address our societal issues of obesity, the food we choose to eat, and sourcing food locally. Next 2 concepts after the jump.

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2 collections of Dried Fruit Jewelry

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

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Love that artists explore with just about any medium and material.  Gorgeous, edible art! Reminds me a bit of RingPops.

Using only a silver ring and a dehydrator, a jewelery designer transforms fruit into wearable art. These rings are made with a simple silver ring that is then topped with slice and segments of various dried fruits. The results are completely edible and play with the notion of jewelery as a precious art. Each ring will slowly decompose and eventually disappear if it isn’t eaten first. The rings are made from fruits such as oranges, plums, kiwis, apples and beets.

More ‘dried fruit rings’ at DesignBoom

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the Pho experience

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

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A lovely connection between tradition, culture, and dining is the Pho tableware set designed by Omid Sadri for the making and serving of Pho. Simply beautiful and functional.

“Phở (fuh) n.Traditional Vietnamese beef noodle soup. Enjoy it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.”

Inspired by the form of a classical Vietnamese lantern, the bowl set here is designed to “simplify and enrich” the experience of the famous Vietnamese dish. The bowl set makes the entire Pho dish easy to carry, then creates a unique experience by revealing the dish layer by layer.

via Yanko Design

The Senses: links (videos) on Food-Related-Design

Sunday, September 6th, 2009


‘The best restaurant in the World,’ ElBulli is a 3 star Michelin in the little town of Cala Monjoi outside of Barcelona. And it looks amazing! Much more than visual eye candy, the gastronomical works of art must be a delight to experience. See the rest of Adam Roberts’ detailed account of his 30 course meal at ElBulli (with more videos and images) of his experience over at Amateur Gourmet and his El Bulli Recap (thanks to Allen the links!)
Wallpaper has a review and selection of pages from the book “ElBulli: Food for Thought, Thought for Food”. (more…)

Drink: a unique addition to the Boston bar scene

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Summer is coming to an end and Labor Day weekend is just around the corner. 2009 is flying by! I’ve been meaning to write this entry months ago. There’s no real excuse, except for a fun-filled summer and as a result entries have been scarce. Apologies to any readers out there!

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So here goes:
Almost a year ago, a friend took me to Drink at 348 Congress Street in the FortPoint area of South Boston. At the time, little did I know this cozy place was a new food and drink concept started by local chef Barbara Lynch alongside her bar maestro John Gertsen, which opened in September 2008.

Super fresh ingredients and knowledgeable bar staff are just the beginning. It’s truly about the experience and enjoyment of mingling. The odd zig-zag shaped bar allows for intimate conversation as sounds bounce around. Dark colors, metal decor and cool grays reflect the neighborhood’s transitioning industrial zone. Lighting is dim but welcoming; vibrant colors from fresh fruit will make you focus behind the bar. Scarce decor puts your attention to the basic ingredients and tools for a great cocktail.

Be patient since mixologists take longer than normal to stir-up a sensory experience. Bartenders go back and forth from the prep table to pick fresh herbs or peel fresh fruit and back to the bar to press olives for their juices for your beverage. The non-existent drink menu tests their skills as you describe the flavors you enjoy or ask for a suggestion. Well worth the wait for a strong, but not overpowering drink (I can’t recall what it was, but I’ll tell you whatever I had was delicious!)  The decor is well thought out and the choice of tableware is delightful. Bravo! Go check it out 🙂

Read more about Barbara Lynch’s Drink at Boston.com and FortPointBlog.

Fresh ingredients are more than just a trend. Pursip offers consultancy services and shares drink recipes using fresh ingredients that seem to revolve around interaction.

Michael Graves + [yellowtail]

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

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Check out the interview with Michael Graves from DesignVerb. Some good insight into the similarities (and differences) between architecture and product/industrial design! Quite interesting. When I was in highschool I wanted to become an architect… and now, I often find myself comparing the two disciplines of architecture and industrial design. According to Mr. Graves, it’s all problem solving and human or environmental interaction, just on different scales.

DV:
What elements and methods in your architectural profession bring value to the product/industrial design discipline?

MG:
I don’t really view them as separate, actually. I’ve always fashioned myself a general practitioner, not as a specialist in any one area. I feel that too often, people become too specialized. Just as a lawyer should be well practiced in case law, an architect should have the same fundamental knowledge of their craft. And if your business evolves into an area of specialty, then that’s great – but it shouldn’t define the extent of your expertise.

DV:
What differences do you find between an architect and a product designer? Strengths, weaknesses.

MG:
Certainly, there’s a difference between the scale and complexity of a building and an artifact. However, we take the design of both equally seriously, and take into consideration their functionality, how people relate to and use them, how they each influence the continuum from the scale of a city to the building to the interior room to the object on the table. When looked at broadly rather than in isolation, buildings and products reflect our core values. If people intuitively understand how to use them and gain joy from their visual appearance, we’ve made a difference.

More insight about the design intent and process of [yellow tail] wine glasses on YouTube.

Read another interview on Architechnophilia