Experimental Dining (Book)

Performance, Experience and Ideology in Contemporary Creative Restaurants

Considers four of the world’s leading creative restaurants as experimental performance practice. Using ideas from performance studies, cultural studies, philosophy and economics, the book argues that technoemotional restaurants can be understood as both a commodified experience and an artistic and aesthetic practice. 10 b/w photographs.


Paul Geary is a Lecturer in Drama at the University of East Anglia.


            The Restaurants: elBulli, The Fat Duck, Noma and Alinea               

            Philosophical Approach                                                                            

            Food, Art and Performance                                                                      

            Arguments and Structure of the Book                                                    


Chapter 1 Preparation: The Creative World of the Restaurants                   

1.1 Restaurant Philosophy            

1.2 Constructing the World                        

1.3 Creative Methods and Approaches

1.4 Technoemotional Cuisine            


Interlude 1 Progression: Italian Futurism and Technoemotional Cuisine 


Chapter 2 Presentation: Performances of the Restaurants                          

            2.1 Performing Front of House                                                                

            2.2 Reading the Menu                                                                               

            2.3 Food Forms                                                                                          


Interlude 2 Produced: Mediated Dining                                                             


Chapter 3 Perception: Sensory and Sensual Experiences                           

            3.1 Immediacy                                                                                            

            3.2 Orality: Language                                                                                

            3.3 Orality: Sex                                                                                            

            3.4 Culinary Deconstruction                                                                     


Interlude 3 Pop-Up: Food, Performance, Philosophy                                     


Chapter 4 Processing: Making Sense                                                               

            4.1 Making Sense                                                                                      

            4.2 Food Narratives                                                                                               

            4.3 Aesthetic Processing                                                              


Interlude 4 Posterity: Documenting Experiences                                            


Chapter 5 Payoff: Political and Economic Frames of Experience                

            5.1 Enjoyment and Excess                                                                                   

            5.2 Politics of the Seasonal and the Local                                            

            5.3 Experiences