First days in Milan. Via Lapin Kulta Solar Kitchen Restaurant on Facebook
Once again Milan Design Week is here, and like most years, it is the small independent events that grab our attention. Like the Lapin Kulta Solar Kitchen Restaurant, that celebrates the sun, clean energy, good food, beer and friends. This time, Catalan ex-designer Martí Guixé (who has a passion for food which reflects in his work, see Seed Safe) teamed up with Finnish food visionaryy Antto Melasniemi to roll out the solar kitchen at the Triennale di Milano during the furniture fair.
Everything in the Lapin Kulta Solar Kitchen Restaurant is cooked with pure solar energy. According to the chef, solar heat affects the taste and texture of the dish in a surprising and positive way, producing a completely different taste experience. Lapin Kulta, the Finnish beer brewery behind the project, explains:
It is an environmental and gastronomic art project as well as a gourmet eatery, that highlights key contemporary themes: a nature-driven process, flexibility and immediacy. Depending on the day's sunshine, the nature-driven kitchen will be able to serve a solar barbecue, meals prepared at lower temperatures or salads. The restaurant will therefore also test people's flexibility: if it rains, we have to adapt, reschedule and deal with the nature-dependent delays. Immediacy will be evident in the urgency of movements and decisions, and real-time information: a cloud could change the course of a business lunch!
So I guess it is a bit like eating local food and depending on the seasons; salad in the summer, cabbage during winter (depending on where you live). It takes a creative mind to improvise a tasty meal, related to the weather. I like that, although dragging beer from Finland to Italy might not be reducing the ecological footprint much but I get the message and love the way the project is presented. The Pop-up restaurant Hel Yes! at last year's London Design Festival was equally sublime and luckily didn't depend on the sun.
So if you're in Milan this week, visit the Lapin Kulta Solar Kitchen Restaurant, open on sunny days!