Check this out! I’ve always had this fantasy (you’ve probably had it yourself) where I open a little pop-up restaurant in, say, Paris and change my life in a range of exciting ways. Sounds like a dream, like something other people do – but you might be surprised at the variety of dreams that have become prosperous businesses.
If you’re a lover of food and an admirer of these “other people”, then have a wee look at A Delicious Life. Published by Gestalten, this book is a bona fide catalogue of lives you’ll wish you were living.
The book charts the successes of different businesses across the world and I’m not just talking about eateries. We have, for example, Arvid Häusser, a top-drawer designer who has invented the most beautiful, porcelain coffee machine you’ve ever seen. Or there’s Put A Egg On It – a biannual food magazine from Brooklyn full of features, tips and personal stories all printed on green paper.
This is a book about food and the people who love it.
I’ve noticed quite a demand for books such as these in recent years. I put it down to enterprises such as Rachel Khoo and The Pizza Pilgrims. In one case, we have the gorgeous Rachel, who ran a teeny-tiny restaurant from her pokey little flat in Paris, followed inevitably by the book and TV show combo. Then we have the Pizza Pilgrims who scaled down a Neapolitan business model to fit inside a Piaggio Ape and made a mint on the streets of London. You can see their TV show or buy their book at your convenience.
An idea – that’s all you need.
I don’t want to spoil the whole experience for you but, by all means, check out Lick Me I’m Delicious, the brainchild of Charlie Harry Francis. When you see his steampunk mobile nitro ice cream buggy, you’ll start wondering where the line is drawn between fantasy and reality.
But the entry that really blew my mind into a fine, pink mist was Wohlfarth Schokolade. Christophe Wohlfarth creates things from chocolate that are so mad you’ll just accuse me of taking drugs. You can buy, and I’m not making this up, a record that you can take home and play on your standard turntable…but it’s made of chocolate! That’s music you can eat! If the world of food hasn’t gone completely off the hinges then I don’t know what’s going on.
So there you are, buy it for yourself, a friend, you ma and see what’s been fizzing around in my head like popping brain-candy. Or just get your local bookseller to remove the cellophane and you can have a cheeky, non-committal browse on your lunch break. You might even be inspired to start your own exciting new food business.