Believe it or not, we “eat” in more ways than one. Before we eat with our mouths, we eat with our eyes. Visual appeal is just as important as the tasting experience of the food. Before you even take that first bite, you’ve already judged the meal in front of you. The presentation of the plating makes an impression, even a promise, with the viewer. If the foodie is intrigued by the food, the artistic plating has done its job. If it looks good, you’re gonna wanna have it.
First Impressions Are Everything
The art of plating may seem to too prestigious of a thing to university students to care about. As students who are always busy with studies and social life, we “never have the time” to even think about the plating of our food. We’re more like, “Just shut up and give me the food.”
In that case, think of it this way: If you went on a fancy date and he/she showed up to the nice restaurant to meet (fabulous) you in messy hair, a rumpled and wrinkled shirt, stained and ripped pants, near destroyed shoes… You can imagine the rest. Do you think that first impression of that date will entice you to a kiss later? Certainly not from me.
It may seem unfair, even rude, that I’m not giving them (the date or the food) a chance. But in a world run by appearances, they count. And sure, I may give them another try (as in talk and get to know the date or take a bite of the food), but first impressions truly do mean a lot to the overall experience. If we take care of ourselves, what we spend our time with should as well. We are the artists to our world, why deny ourselves the simple pleasures and creations of beautiful things like latte art and the plating of our food.
There should be fireworks. All. The. Damn. Time.
An Expression of Personality
Visual appeal is just as important as the taste experience of the food. Have you ever been cooking or baking or decorating something in the kitchen and felt like a boss creator of something new, something that expressed a little bit of you? Of course you have. Food is undeniably an art form.
It is the beauty of the plated dish that entices you to take a bite. The design in plating makes the experience of food more than just eating and enjoying, but further into an expression of craftsmanship and art. Using the form, texture, and color to invoke emotions and even tell a story. Food is a creative means that is universal, and plating is the mode of introduction to the meal itself, the chef behind it, and the cultures around the world that influenced it.
Culinary art refers to more than just the study of cooking – it encompasses the preparation, process, and presentation of meals. It’s the development of creating edible works of art, of taking the care to prepare and arrange them so that the meal is pleasing to both the taste buds as well as the eyes. Culinary art through plating greatly integrates main senses into the food experience. And really, isn’t cooking the most attractive and harmonizing way for the senses to experience creation?
Touching the handy instruments and ingredients, smelling the wafts of all the various aromas, hearing the prep work for the ingredients or the sound of the food being cooked, but ultimately, seeing what you can make from nothing and tasting the culinary creation you’ve made. Food is altogether an art.
Through food art, the cook is an artist, the food their medium, and the plate their canvas. And like all stages in the process of creating art, every step cannot be taken for granted. Like on a date, appearances are important, it’s the first time meeting someone, don’t you want to look nice? The art to plating is the final step to respecting the food – to allow it to confidently speak for itself and make the memorable first impression. An impression that says, “That’s right, I’m gorgeous, and I taste even better.”