The environment in which you eat has a considerable impact on your perception of taste. This was the finding of an academic paper, published by Professor John Edwards in 2003. His team at Bournemouth University discovered that the same dish, chicken à la king, tasted different depending on where it was consumed. For Prof. Edwards research, the dish (memorably tipped on Tom Cruises head in the 1988 film Cocktail) was tasted in ten different locations, including a school, a care home, an Army base and a swanky restaurant.

The more ‘high brow’ the surroundings, the higher the score: in the posh joints, it was rated as moist, tasty and filling, while in one of the dives, it was perceived to be ‘claggy’, ‘dry’ and ‘disgusting’.

In response to the research Bompas & Parr, a London based event company, went on a flavour safari exploring the concept for the Salone del Mobile edition of TAR magazine. Photographer Greta Ilieva captured the chicken à la king in a variety of locations.

The verdict? Yes, your surroundings DO influence the taste of food. Ultimo Catering & Events believe in a holistic approach to event catering. Your dining experience should involve everything from the taste of the cuisine & beverages, to your table settings, your venue and of course, good company!