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Virtual reality will create a new form of gastronomic experience

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The restaurant world is constantly evolving, and is why we must not be surprised that transgressive initiatives arising, While they may seem strange at first, They involve a depth that makes worthy of being evaluated as ideas great long-term potential.

Virtual reality applied to the enhancement of the diner's sensory experience in restaurants is one of those concepts that are now in their earliest childhood, but that within a few decades could populate the hotel panorama around the globe. To get the business back on-premise, inside restaurants, After the coronavirus crisis, it will be necessary to differentiate the experience offered by the restaurant from other hospitality companies.

To find out if the future of the restaurants goes through VR technology, or if such innovations remain a mere fad, Hannah Kulczak, Rigo Deleongovea and René Brinklye embarked on an adventure that took them from California to New York City.

The aim of the group of friends was celebrating a birthday original form, and for this they had the services of The James Beard Foundation, a group that offers a virtual experience with artistic touches at lunchtime.

The food offered at the foundation consists of seven courses and lasts about an hour. By 125$ each diner receives a glass of champagne and a tutorial on how to use the glass window VR Oculus. Behind the apparent normality, and like a Disney musical it were, Travelers watched began to dance, floating in the air, strange recreations of everyday food products: pineapples pink, blue cherries, pieces of meat large ...

Music and colorful virtual scenes are enlivened by the arrival of each of the seven courses that make up the experience, and a narrative aliñaba the experience with poetic notes. An ethereal experience designed by Aerobanquets in which the food was not the main course; the mentholated watermelon or toast with truffle passed the background while the diners were guided by the psychedelic virtual recreation.

At the moment, Aerobanquets food is a strategy marketing to attract new diners at The James Beard Foundation, where before the pandemic at least 200 scenes high standing throughout the year. Its business model aims to recover and even exceed the rhythm of yesteryear as well as the coronavirus crisis..

The only limitation?: the price. A 2000$ by covered, the experience is not to the extent of any pocket.

And that's just against what we fight now. The time has come to democratize the virtual reality environment of the restaurant. That is why more and appear more establishments that offer this innovation, and competition makes prices fall.

In recent years we have witnessed many initiatives based on VR in the world of restaurants and food, These are some of them:

  • In 2015 the cheese-producing brand Boursin offered a virtual experience in the UK to promote its creamy cheeses.
  • Also in 2015 Nescafé partnered with Google's virtual reality division to bring consumers to Brazilian coffee plantations without them having to leave the comfort of their home.
  • In 2017 Kentucky Fried Chicken launched a virtual tutorial to teach new hires how to properly fry the chicken that makes the brand famous.
  • Project Nourished has recently been working on ways to trick our taste buds with virtual reality, as well as improving the sustainability of catering business with the VR.
  • Tree by Naked is a contemporary dining experience based in Japan where extensive use of VR technology is made.
  • He bar Redline VR de Chicago (Illinois, OF. UU.) retro fashion mix of virtual arcades with a cocktail unparalleled.
  • In 2019 Robert Dando presented a balance virtual reality team using a viewer Samsung Gear VR from 20$ and a smartphone of the same brand.

Although virtual reality isolates each of the individuals who sit at the table, managers of these restaurants are seeing a step further. In the information age, in which the initial impact raw, These unique experiences are perfect for generating participation in social networks, It is a tool of marketing ideal, capable of generating organic traffic without further intervention by the restorer.

Hannah's experience Kulczak, Rigo Deleongovea and René Brinklye was so unique, full of creativity, good times and flavors that what was initially a private event became, motivated by word of mouth, first success in social networks, and then in a news story.

And we move into uncharted terrain. Still not clear how we can use virtual reality to improve our lives. It is foreseeable that as the technology they could virtualize diners located in different locations to share a joint VR experience. In these times when social distancing and capacity limitations in restaurants are the order of the day, innovations like these could be really disruptive in the market.

Psychologists suggest that virtual reality is in the mind more deeply human can be manipulated. Although this opens up various ethical debates origin, moral and philosophical, Do not be carried away by technophobia. VR applications can improve our lives substantially.

According to Charles Spence, experimental psychologist at the University of Oxford (United Kingdom) which specializes in the human mind and multisensory dining experiences, technology can shape tomorrow's meals in the following ways:

  • Altering the development of food through an audiovisual narrative or even olfactory
  • I adapting the environment to the niche associated with the restaurant
  • Adding a unique experience to the act of eating
  • Reducing the crisis of loneliness establishing virtual kitchens where people can relate isolated by an avatar to sit at the table to eat.
  • Alleviating situations in which social distancing is inevitable: quarantines such as that currently caused by the coronavirus, jobs in remote or inhospitable places, penalties for crimes served in prisons, etc.
  • Enhancing characteristics that make dishes more desirable

In any case, It seems wise to ensure that virtual reality will not bring success to restaurants Leg, but it will be an addition that will have to be carefully implemented in a fully functional restaurant. Thus, the first step is to overcome the difficulties that are imposed on us today by the coronavirus crisis.

In the case of the virtual salon of The James Beard Foundation had the expert work of Aerobanquets, that before landing in EE. THE. had already operated in China and South Korea with a very careful work based on a literary work of 1932, The futuristic kitchen: a meal that prevented a suicide, de Filippo Tommaso Marinetti, and improved by the head of Aerobanquets, the italian artist Mattia Casalegno.

And for the gastronomic section they were not sparing in details either. Chintan Pandya, A trendy chef who works wonders at the acclaimed Indian restaurant Adda from New York, was in charge of preparing the seven-course menu that delighted the attendees.

It is thus evident that for virtual reality to really triumph in the world of restaurants, First it is necessary to reduce the price of the systems, only in this way can professionals in the sector cope with the initial investment; And then it is necessary that the restaurants that want to make use of these technological innovations already shine for their usual service, VR separate. We can only dream that when this nightmare known as SARS-2 forward, we can enjoy experiences as enriching as Aerobanquets.

About the Author

Article by the editorial team of DiegoCoquillat.com. It has professionals both in the field of hospitality, gastronomy and tourism, and new technologies and innovation.

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