Soundbite - A Sensory Dining Experience
Local, Collaborative and Highly Sensory Dining Experiences
Being conscientious about food—sourcing and seasonality—and how this impacts our community is important when considering sustainable choices. However, another important aspect of our experience with food is the company. With whom do we eat and share our food?
For several years, Chef Nick Brune of Eco Caters has tackled this element of conscientious eating, bringing various elements of the community together through local food-music experiences. SoundBite pairs courses with performances by San Diego musicians. Each month the featured chefs, the musicians and the style of food changes to match that month’s location.
My first experience was in April 2016 at Trilogy Sanctuary in La Jolla—a multifaceted space that functions as a vegan cafe and yoga studio. Chef Brune was joined by Chef Michael Feil of Trilogy and Chef Jeremy Scullin of Kindred, and each chef prepared two of six vegan courses that were inspired by select tracks from artists Justin Froese and Briahnna.
The night’s edible ensemble commenced with a spread of cheese, juice and pureetopped flatbread, then wound through five more filling (and musically inspired) courses that included fried garbanzo cakes, coconut ambrosia and maple-mashed yams.
What I found the most enjoyable was how this space encouraged conversation between myself, the other diners and the chefs. At a typical restaurant, it’s not often you can easily converse with fellow diners or with those working hard in the kitchen. So when Brune introduced his ambrosia course with an anecdote about growing up in the Deep South, I was thrilled. He related stories about climbing Southern oak trees and how his experience infused this dish and helped him to create it. It was an unexpected, and certainly rich additive that benefitted my experience as whole.
My experience reminded me of a quote I’d read once from Alice Waters—the mother-goddess of the organic food movement in America: “This is the power of gathering: It inspires us, delightfully, to be more hopeful, more joyful, more thoughtful: in a word, more alive.”
Of SoundBite and what Brune hoped to accomplish in the community when he started the event, he says, “It’s mainly an event supporting local musicians, chefs and restaurants. It’s also a platform for myself and other chefs to get creative with our cuisine. When a chef truly gets involved with the music, a one-of-kind dish is brought to life.”
The next SoundBite will be on November 7 at Saiko Sushi featuring Tori Roze and the Hot Mess. Brune expects there to be a lot of “funky sushi.” Vegetarian/vegan dishes are always available when requested.