Fast Food is Balls

FoodBall is the new venture by Spanish shoe company Camper — whose motto is 'walk, don't run' - an ethical and ecologically aware organisation who have become well known for their comfortable, hard wearing shoes that are notable for their asymmetric and colourful style. The style and ethos of Camper shoes has been thoughtfully carried through into FoodBall - an eaterie which can be found in the Raval district of Barcelona...Miguel Flux‡ head of Camper's business development says "We didn't want to diversify in the usual way. While I am sure we could successfully put the Camper name on watches and sunglasses, we wanted to do something that we, and our customer's would appreciate as useful. Food and shelter like shoes, are a basic need." The FoodBall concept is itself an embodiment of Camper's wholesome attitude: "Camper FoodBall was born with the aim of transferring Camper's values and spirit to the world of nutrition and of creating a brand new concept based on real food."

The new food concept is very simple - balls of whole grain ecological rice from Calasparra (Murcia, Spain) filled with various other locally sourced, organic ingredients such as mushrooms, tofu, chicken, or beetroot. With the balls you can chose from different dipping sauces, such as soy and ginger or coconut curry. There are also sweet balls made from dates or carob and various organic drinks such as hemp beer and bancha tea as well as microbiologically pure filtered water. The initial impression of the food lined up under the glass counter as you walk in is rather minimal and bland, but hopefully your curiosity will get the better of you because both the sweet and savoury balls are delicious, not bland and dry as one might expect but full of flavour with a good texture and beautiful fillings. FoodBall is strictly environmental, ecological, organic and local. It is "built on the principles of bioconstruction, using non-contaminating materials and renewable energy sources." Even the plates, cups, and take away boxes, made from sugar cane and corn, are biodegradable.

The interior of Foodball has been created by the Catalan designer Marti Guixe. He describes FoodBall as "a new way of eating food fast. 100% natural, 100% fresh, handmade, bio, organic, and full of ideology". Guixe has also designed several of Camper's flagship stores and you can see here how Camper's and Guixe's quirky off beat styles have become synonymous with one another. As you walk into FoodBall you are aware of the creative partnership almost immediately from Guixe's trademark naÔve graphics combined with the Camper red ball logo. In the seating area Guixe has chosen to eliminate the need for chairs and tables by creating large concrete stairs on which people can both sit and eat — as though picnicking on some public steps. Although not particularly comfortable and rather austere looking when empty — the effect when several people are eating together is informal and genial, but clearly designed to encourage people to move on when they've finished their balls. The FoodBall package is not the cheapest lunch option in town, however it is impressive in its environmental concerns and re-evaluation of our usual fast food experience. By eliminating restaurant norms such as tables, chairs, cutlery, and by minimizing the menu down to just a few key ingredients, concentrating on food quality and sourcing local organic ingredients they have made eating out a simple, healthy, delicious and efficient experience. It makes everything else seem superfluous.
where to find FoodBall : 9 Calle Elisabets, El Raval, Barcelona. [Leonora & Petz]