Creatives are celebrating food and drink through multi-sensory museums to satisfy social media-obsessed consumers’ desires for information about what they eat and imbibe, says JWT Intelligence in its Food + Drink 2017 report.
Earlier this year, for example, there was The Boba Room, an interactive 15-day exhibition focused on bubble tea at the Open Space Gallery in New York’s Bowery neighborhood. The initiative was conceived by Chaimi Food Studio and funded through Kickstarter, with visitors served beverages from NYC brands such as Vivi Bubble Tea Tales LES, Tea and Milk and PaTea.
Manhattan got its first chocolate museum in March in the shape of Choco-Story New York which examines the Mayan and Aztec origins of chocolate and the process of transforming the cacao bean into a finished product. The museum features an educational space where children can dig for ‘undiscovered artifacts’ in a sandpit and play chocolate shop proprietor with a toy kitchen and cash register.
Other museums are building reputations as dining destinations. Last year, revered Danny Meyer earned two Michelin stars for The Modern, his restaurant in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, got its star in December for RIJKS, headed by chef Joris Bijdendijk.
Erin Emmett, chef at The Franklin Street Works contemporary arts space in Connecticut, explains that demand for good food at arts institutions reflects the rise of foodie culture everywhere. “When you serve something interesting, I think it brings you closer to what you are looking at in a gallery,” he says.