From the fun food facts files:
Did you know that the Dominos research center in Japan was trialling delivery by reindeer? A statement from the company said that it was a difficult decision to abandon the trial and reindeers are very difficult to control. Uh huh. Also from Japan and the first of its kind: a pen that can be safely used to write messages on banana skin. I never knew I needed one of those.
From Britain comes research that explains why aeroplane food never tastes really good. It isn’t just because it has to be pre-cooked and schlepped from kitchen to airport to thousands of feet in the sky and then reheated before you eat it, it is also due to the conditions inside a passenger plane which actually alter our perceptions of food. Within the cabin the atmosphere is very dry and the air pressure is lower than usual. This affects the way our tastebuds work. Low humidity decreases our sensitivity to odours, which are in fact the main conveyors of flavour. Oddly, the loud background noise also has an effect on how we perceive certain tastes, with salty and sweet tastes perceived less intensely. Loud background noise also makes food sound crunchier, which can change the apparent texture of food.
iPads. We love them. But do we love them enough to eat off them? Restaurants are serving food on the screens of ipads. One establishment serves a dish of truffle croquettes on an iPad that shows video of dogs searching for truffles. I wonder how they clean them afterwards?
Blue wine. It’s a thing. It has a gorgeous neon hue achieved with natural additives. But for Gik, the Basque company that makes blue wine, there are legal headaches on the horizon, as Spanish lawmakers grapple with the question of what can and cannot be called ‘wine’. Last month, Gik was fined by Spanish regulators for breaching European wine laws, which do not allow wine makers to add colourants that are not specifically approved in the oenological regulations. Unsurprisingly, blue colourants are not on the list. Gik is appealing the fine and has filed a petition. In the meantime, they have re-labelled and re-formulated their blue beverage by adding 1% grape must so that the product no longer needs to meet the rules for ‘pure wine’. It’s not available where I live, which is a shame because I would love to have a taste.