After a recent lunch at a Chinese
hog trough buffet where we were lulled into stupor by the gentle tones of "Rock-a-Bye-Baby" on the sound system and one too many sticks of chicken meat, we've been thinking a lot about music and food.
Turns out we're not the only ones. Around the same time we heard about Turntable Kitchen, a blog where San Francisco couple Kelsey and Matthew write about food and music pairings. And for a $25 monthly fee, the couple will send you "a curated food and music discovery experience" in the form of a 7" vinyl single, a digital mix tape, three original recipes, a few dried specialty ingredients and the pair's thoughts on it all.
Brooklyn band One Ring Zero's taking it step further. They've released The Recipe Project, a book and CD inspired by celeb chef recipes. See (below) John Besh sing the band's song about his shrimp remoulade!
Music might alter the taste of wine. Last week it was reported that British researcher Aidan North has linked wine's flavor to the music being played while it's consumed. Four groups tasted the same wines with vastly different soundtracks, never failing to describe the wine in words that also described the music.
So what are some St. Louis chefs listening to while they create the food we love? Peio Aramburu of Bistro 1130 - "Anything, but it has to be in tune; when it's just making noise, and the sound isn't good, it isn't worth having on. It has to be close to perfect, otherwise I can't take it. I whistle along, but I'm not musical."
Reine Bayoc of SweetArt Bakeshop - "Anything Latin: Afro-Cuban, Poncho Sanchez...something steady. If it's too slow, I'm moving too slow."
Collenn Clawson of Big Sky Cafe - "Depends; A lot of braising likes rock 'n' roll; A.M. prep likes Pretty Little Empire/Flaming Lips/The Decemberists; Afternoons like funk/soul/reggae. Sunday I like to play Tibetan Chakra chants and Steve Gold. Led Zeppelin for breaking down."
John Griffiths of Truffles - "Actually, we don't have music in the kitchen. It's weird, and I won't put on the radio at home when I'm cooking either. I like quiet. It's calming and soothing to me, so there's no music in my kitchen."
Eli Herrir of the Mediterranean Grill - "We don't play music in the kitchen, only in the restaurant. During lunch, we play soft rock, and during dinner, we have instrumental music."
Jimmy Hippchen of The Crow's Nest - "Hip-hop and reggae."
Steve Komorek of Trattoria Marcella - "I am so diverse -- from AC/DC to Barry Manilow to Grateful Dead."
Todd Lough of Bixby's - "I honestly don't like a radio playing in my kitchen. I think it's distracting."
Ivy Magruder of Vin de Set - "Johnny Cash. 'A Boy Named Sue' because I almost named my son Sue. Named him Cash instead."
Casey Shiller of Jilly's Cupcake Bar - "At school, there's no music allowed in my kitchen. [Laughs] At Jilly's, I'm a Y98 kind of guy."
Janet Shulman of the Caramel House - "I am a rock'n'roller, so I like the music of the '60s, '70s and '80s as well as jazz and blues. When I cook professionally, I need quiet, so I don't make mistakes. When I wrap, package and drive, I listen to 97.1 FM."
Lynne Truong of Bahn Mi So #1 - "Classic Vietnamese ballads."
Riverfront Times works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of St. Louis and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep St. Louis' true free press free.