Molecular gastronomy – Science on a plate

The prerequisites also exist in Romania – as long as there is a provider who has all the necessary ingredients for preparing dishes based on physical and chemical gastronomical studies; and so will exist, in the near future, a rich offer of restaurants based on the practices of molecular gastronomy.

The concept of molecular gastronomy was born thanks to Nicholas Kurti, a physics professor at Oxford University, who, after a speech he gave in 1969 named “The physicist in the kitchen” focused his activity almost exclusively on the research of the kitchen`s physical and chemical processes. Since 1985, he has continued to research the secrets of the kitchen together with the French savant Hervé This. Kurti`s motto was: “I believe it is sad that our civilization is able to measure the temperature of the planet of Venus, but we are not clear with regards to what it`s going on during the cooking of a rice pudding“. 

Molecular gastronomy is continuously developing and it has already become a true branch of the culinary art. The physical and chemical processes that take place during the cooking are carefully analyzed. Based on the results and on the study of the components that create the taste of raw ingredients, we can create new, exclusivist and presentative dishes. So, new dishes emerge and some of them are at least bizarre at first glance, such as the dessert called Full English Breakfast served in Heston Blumentha`s restaurant Fat Duck located in Berkshire, England. This desert tastes like ham omelette, grilled sausages, ketchup, lemon tea, muesli and caramel crème, all together. 

The world`s most famous restaurants that serve “molecular” dishes are the already mentioned Fat Duck in England, El Bulli in Spain and L`atelier by Joel Robuchon in Las Vegas. To be able to enjoy the unusual dishes offered by these restaurants, the clients sometimes have to reserve a table many months ahead. 

If you would like to have such an experience in Bucharest, you may visit The Artist, located on Nicolae Tonitza Street. It is a small and elegant restaurant, where the cook and the co-owner is Paul Oppenkamp, former Executive Chef of the cruise ship The World and here, he introduces people in the world of gastronomical science. And, as an advantage, there is no need yet for reservations made with months in advance. And if the experience encourages you to try it at home also, you can visit FT-Shop located on Dr. Nicolae Staicovici Street in Bucharest, where Culinary Master Răzvan Cruceanu, former Top Chef competitor, offers you, besides books, specific tools and ingredients and even tips and tricks and some interesting recipes.