- Michael Chiarello - http://michaelchiarello.com -

Foodspotting

Posted By mchiarello On July 11, 2011 @ 1:48 am In Commentary | 4 Comments

What do you think about diners whipping out their iPhones and snapping photos of each plate as if comes from the restaurant’s kitchen? On the one hand, I think this trend makes Bottega stand out, judging from the photos I see on the internet. On the other hand, I’m old-school and I like to surprise a guest with a plate that holds something unexpected. It deflates my sails a little when one of the diners, just before a dish comes out, describes it in detail to everybody else at the table and holds up a photo on their phone.

This trend reminds me of watching a tourist in San Francisco; he was so intent on getting that perfect snapshot of the Transamerica Pyramid that he didn’t notice the people walking past carrying their pink plastic bags from Chinatown, the aromas of food from a street cart, the color of the sky, the architecture, the way the light was falling on the buildings. There’s no way the iPhone can record all of that; it just gets one tiny slice of the experience.

What do you think? When people at the table next to you are snapping away with their cameras, does that change your dining experience? Is a meal lacking if you don’t get a few photos of it? And for all those of you who like snapping photos of the food you eat, do you photograph for the main purpose of putting it on Yelp or Chowhound? Are you recording it so you can re-create the dish at home? Do you have photo albums (virtual, of course) of memorable evenings, including the food?

I go back and forth about cameras at the table so would love to hear from you: tell me why you like the food photography trend or why you don’t.

-Michael


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