There is a new backlash on an everyday social media norm that all restaurant goers and foodies need to be aware of and it could be taking a stronghold in your cities most exclusive restaurant’s. Be warned that the celebrity chefs have had enough, the exclusive restaurants want their exclusivity back and they are now taking a stand!
From Heston Blumenthal not allowing any flash photography on his multiple coursed meals to restaurants in New York where you need to book up to a month in advance, not allowing you to take any photos at all, the restaurateurs are sending out a message to their patrons, “its just food, eat it”. No longer should you feel free in these restaurants to take photos how you want and share with your friends on social media, no longer will you be able to showcase the amazing food placed in front of you. You will now feel hesitant to take a snapshot of the delectable morsels that you are so excited to share and so eager to eat. So the question I suppose is why are they doing this?
One would be that they don’t want you to let the food sit there too long and get cold while your too busy taking your photos. Which is a good point, as patrons, don’t we want the food to be at its best especially while we are sitting in these types of restaurants where you are spending much more money that you would usually when you go out to eat?
The second is that the amount of effort, time and skill that goes into all dishes presented by the chef can be astronomical and as result the chefs tend to feel like they have given a little piece of themselves on the plate they are serving to the public. So out of respect, wouldn’t you want to enjoy the food at its most perfect which is as soon as it comes out of the kitchen?
Another reason is that these award winning restaurants are becoming less exclusive as they used to be. Thanks to social media, anyone can now upload a photo of whatever they are eating. As an information tool it is fabulous and allows us to see the amazing products, creativity and flavours in the top restaurants in the world but this also creates less mystery for the dishes and allows other chefs to put their own spin on these award winning dishes without even stepping foot in the door which makes it harder and harder for top chefs to compete above their rivals.
And the last is due to the fact that we are all now (or like to think) budding photographers. While some photos that you see are amazing and the people who are responsible for taking them should really give up their day job and become professional photographers, some other photos (yes we have all seen them) can be rather….. *cough*…… *cough* …..disastrous. Now for a chef you want your plates to be showcased in the best possible light so that it attracts more customers into the restaurant. You want people looking at your food to be memorised on how the chefs have created such a wonderful dish and in turn have respect for the amount of work that goes into these dishes not the opposite.
On the other hand though, if your a foodie like myself with a community of foodie followers, my first priority while I am out is taking a photo and sharing the experience I’m having with people who support me and have similar interests. Out of respect to the restaurant and chefs, I will always try to get the best angles and take many photos of each plate as soon they come out of the kitchen to ensure that the food is still fresh, hot and that I have many photos to choose from. My favourite photos from the experience (albeit sometimes rustic) will then make it onto my social media page.
Should we really allow restaurants and celebrity chefs to dictate what we can or cannot share with our friends and where do we as customers draw the line?