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The dining landscape is changing. From on-the-go ordering apps to interactive eating technologies, touchscreen table-top menus and dishes served with an iPad to amplify the flavours, digital dining offers immersive experiences – and perhaps more efficient eating down the line.
The age of mixed-reality dining (as tipped by trailblazing duo Bompas & Parr) is upon us – here’s where you’ll find the best.
Menus are projected onto the table – navigable via touch sensor – in this Asian-fusion London restaurant. According to the founders, the concept was the by-product of a dining experience in which they had trouble getting the attention of waiting staff. To create an order, diners must push the virtual buttons on the e-table – a process meant to free up staff’s time to socialise with customers. While you wait, watch a video of the chefs preparing your sushi or robata, challenge your partner to a table-top game of battleships or pull up information about the local area to start planning your post-meal activity.
- +44 20 7851 7051
- Go to Website
Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet Shanghai
Dining at Ultraviolet in Shanghai is a multi-sensory experience. The intimate 10-seat dining room is sparse in decoration; instead, 360-degree wall projections, table-top videos, scent diffusers and a multichannel speaker system set the tone of the evening. Each dish (20 in total) is paired with an audio-visual experience to enhance the diners’ experience of flavour – you’ll sit through a sunrise, a rainforest and a thunderstorm among other meticulously controlled atmospheres. This immersive dining experience from French chef Paul Pairet was 15 years in the making, finally opening in 2012. 10 seats become available at midnight Shanghai time each night for bookings 90 days in advance.
Combining food, science and theatrics, Alinea is a spectacle to behold. Conceived by experimental chef Grant Achatz, Alinea plates up molecular gastronomy like no other. With a menu consisting of edible balloons filled with helium, a“flat-packed” dish for diners to assemble and a dry-ice-filled chocolate ball that drops and breaks to unveil a pumpkin pie, Alinea is conceptual rather than gimmicky. With three Michelin stars, it is consider one of the best restaurants in the world.
- +312 867 0110
- Go to Website
The 350-metre-squared Ibiza born Sublimotion was designed expressly to represent the first, and the greatest, gastronomic show the world. Representative of the islands flashier side, a single seat costs €1,500, making Sublimotion the world’s most expensive restaurant. Now located in the Hard Rock Hotel, the concept for the restaurant started in 2012, inside the research workshop of Spanish Chef Paco Roncero. A space created to stimulate the five senses, with interjections and stimulants throughout, dinner at Sublimotion is about total immersion.
The main dining capsule has a sophisticated audio-visual setting and a table designed for 12. Diners can tuck into a tasting menu, prepared and presented by a team of 25, over a three-hour period. Marrying art, gastronomy and virtual reality, diners don wearable technology from Samsung for the duration of their dining experience. Journeying from the bottom of the ocean to the depths of outer space, you’re assured of an other-worldly experience.
- +34 618 891 358
- Go to Website
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