Perhaps you’ve heard of a dining trend that has sprung up over the past few years: restaurants where the entire experience takes place in total darkness. You can see absolutely nothing. The idea is that we are overly dependent on visual cues in eating, and if we take that away it will heighten the other senses. (It is probably also a good way to develop greater hand-mouth coordination…perhaps something to try out on small children? Just a thought.) And for this, you pay what I can only consider a ridiculous amount of money.
Of course, we are the people who refuse to go to the Chinese Buffet unless we have coupons, so perhaps I am not the most qualified judge of high dining.
Luckily for me, I got to experience not only Blind Dining but also Blind Cooking last night, when Hungry Husband and I returned from spending an afternoon with friends to discover that the electricity was out. And when you live, as we do, in a neighborhood of tightly-packed multi-story buildings, there is very little nascent light that filters in from outside. And when you live as we do, in a temporary home, you are likely to overlook purchasing emergency items like candles…
The good news is I had dinner all prepared, it just needed to be heated, easily done over the blue (sometimes orange) glow of the gas flame. And then I settled down in front of the gentle glow of my laptop screen, warm soup in hand to watch an old favorite movie. So, technically, I did not eat in the total darkness; I could see the outline of my bowl, my hand as it moved towards my mouth, though I could not really see my food…but it was probably as close to a real blind dining experience as I’ll ever get. And it was free!