Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Beyond Molecular Gastronomy

ruhlman.com: The End of Molecular Gastronomy?
We are at a remarkable point in our culinary history. The burst of creativity that began at El Bulli and has carried on in places like Fat Duck and Alinea (among a handful of other notable American restaurants) has been thrilling. But I think the innovations we’ve seen have been more than enough for now. Now, like the innovations of Nouvelle Cuisine in the 1970s, techniques such as hot gels, unusual starches and gums, foams, and sous vide cooking, need to find their proper place in the evolution of those restaurants fueled by the creative spirit and striving for innovation--without being dogged by the ungainly and inaccurate term “moleculary gastronomy.” It is the new new cuisine. But we stopped referring to Nouvelle Cuisine as such, after its essential mandates were fully incorporated into the fine dining idiom. In the hands of a chef such as Achatz, whose culinary fundamentals (how to cook a potato, how to make a chestnut puree) are so exquisite, I hope we stop calling the new new cuisine anything at all other than really good food.

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