Building foundations with Jean Nouvel and Frank Gehry
Amelia Rope chocolate
With a background in aromatherapy and a deep love of chocolate, Amelia Rope is a modern alchemist intent on surprising the palate and educating the senses. Adding to her kaleidoscope range that already includes her award-winning chocolate bars and bespoke chocolates, she has just introduced her Autumn/Winter collection, comprising luxury chocolate cubes made from single-origin chocolate that has been ethically and sustainably sourced. A highly conceptual chocolatier, Amelia applied her fascination with mosaics to the new range, hand-wrapping the cubes in block colours that differentiate the three collections. The handmade, bite-sized pieces come in an assortment of Rope's signature award-winning flavours, including Pale Rose, Dark Ginger and Pale Lemon & Sea Salt. Every cube is gluten and alcohol free, and suitable for vegetarians.
Writer: Georgios Chiotis
Casa del Agua, Mexico
Forget the elaborate drink menus of wine bars, cocktail lounges, and juice stations; Casa del Agua is a bar where the main item on the cards is water. The first water and tea boutique in Mexico, it produces artisan water that is collected, distilled and purified on-site, and uses rain and locally sourced water to provide its customers, neighbouring restaurants and families with the purest H2O possible. The work of local architect and designer Héctor Esrawe and branding expert Ignacio Cadena, the system combines natural resources with new age treatment. Rain water is collected from the roof garden, then purified through triple filtration, vapour distillation, re-mineralisation and ionisation, before going on to the next stage: a harmonisation process where the water flows around river rocks displaying written messages of love, respect and gratitude. It is then bottled in crystal containers surrounded by natural light and classical music. Visitors can refill their flasks, buy one of the Casa del Agua designer bottles, or just sip a glass on the roof garden.
Puebla #242, Col. Roma, Mexico, DF 06700; casadelagua.com.mx
Mr Mitre by Philippe Malouin
London-based designer Philippe Malouin is approaching the idea of daily bread from a new perspective with Mr Mitre, a set comprising a tin bread mould and wooden cutting block that defies the 'don't play with your food' advice and transforms loafs into building blocks. Originally produced for the Kopiaste pop-up exhibition during London Design Festival, the Haptic Thought and Design Marketo-commissioned tin allows for the baking of rectangular loafs that can be then precisely cut at 90 or 45 degree angles with the beechwood mitre box. The project accommodates all kinds of bakers, from the ones who strive to create the perfect bread structure to those that simply want to ensure each guest gets their fair share.
Imagine taking a yogurt pot out of the fridge, running it under a tap, and then eating the whole thing - packaging and all. It might sound like a scene from a sci-fi film, but Harvard Professor David Edwards assures us it is the very near future. His revolutionary WikiCells promises to change the way that food is produced, packaged and consumed. Aiming to reduce overwrap waste, WikiCells serve as edible packaging for solid and liquid foods, forming a soft skin with natural particles of chocolate, fruit, nuts, grains and algae extract that are gelatinised with ions of calcium and magnesium. This creates an edible skin similar to that of a grape's, that can be washed with water and offers its own added nutritional value, often complimenting the content's flavour. Wiki Ice cream is already on sale at the Paris Lab Store, but very soon you will be able to try goat's cheese inside an Italian Herb skin (WikiCheese), enjoy Greek yogurt inside a strawberry skin (WikiYogurt), drink orange juice inside an orange zest skin (WikiFruit), or just take a sip of Cointreau inside an orange zest skin (WikiCoctail).
La Patisserie des Reves, Kyoto
To mark the opening of its first store in Japan, Paris' La Patisserie des Reves has given traditional French desserts a Japanese makeover, subtly introducing Japanese ingredients to French classics in their 'Un Automne Japonais' collection. Situated in the heart of the historic Higashiyama neighborhood, the Kyoto store combines the Parisian visual codes with the expertise of local craftsmen. To ensure that the new branch is not a mere clone of its Parisian siblings, virtuoso pastry chef Philippe Conticini delved into time-honoured Japanese culinary traditions and created a collection that bridges the tastes of East and West. The famous 'Paris-Brest' transforms into a 'Kyoto-Brest', with the addition of azuki Japanese red beans, cream, mango and matcha green tea to the traditional almond cream. The striking 'Meringue Neige' is a delicate meringue ball nested on a bed of black sesame and a thin layer of praline. And the traditional 'langue de chat' biscuits now have a green tint from the addition of matcha tea, sandwiching a layer of white chocolate that tantalises the palate with a hint of sea salt. The gift boxes are the work of celebrated artisans Kaikado and Kochosai, and are inspired by the vanguard of Kyoto's artisan crafts of metal, cloth, paper and bamboo. These can also be found on the shelves of the two Parisian stores this season.
518 Washio-cho, Kodaiji-kitamonmae-dori, Shimogawara-higashihairu, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto Shi 605-0072
'Drinks' by Tony Conigliaro
Expert cocktail alchemist and award-winning barman Tony Conigliaro's new book, 'Drinks', is a cocktail guide containing 50 classic recipes revived and reinterpreted in surprising and imaginative ways. Conigliaro blends the principles of molecular gastronomy with traditional bartending, and presents a selection of savoury cocktails (such as the White Truffle Martini), concept potions (Cosmo Popcorn is our favourite), and drinks inspired by perfume (the Lipstick Rose cocktail is inspired by perfumer Ralf Schwieger's creation for Frederic Malle). You can also find him demonstrating the classics of the future (his Twinkle cocktail is now served in cocktail bars around the world), toying with the classics of the past (like his Dry Ice Daquiri and Rhubard Royale), and walking the line between food and drink with culinary creations (like his Sweet Grilled Lemon Margarita and Nettle Gimlet). With the last part of the book dedicated to turning even the most novice drink maker into a cocktail connoisseur, your next drinks party is guaranteed to be a success.
Drinks by Tony Conigliaro is published by Ebury Press, £25
Casa Dragones limited-edition tequila
Many would say that there is an art to enjoying slow sipping tequila, and in the case of the limited-edition Casa Dragones tequila bottles, this is true. The Mexican tequila brand collaborated with renowned artist Gabriel Orozco to produce a limited-edition bottle adorned with one of the artist's most iconic works of art. The collaboration comes in honour of Orozco's 2011 retrospective tour (MoMa, Kuntsmuseum, Tate Modern and Centre Pompidou) and marries the traditional craftsmanship of sipping tequila with the best of Mexican contemporary art. The partnership centres around Orozco's 'Black Kites' piece, a human skull that is covered in an intricate graphic checkerboard. Each one of the 400 crystal bottles is engraved with the Black Kites motif, and is signed, numbered, and dated by hand. Inside, the handcrafted sipping tequila is the result of a gentle blend of silver tequila with a hint of extra aged tequila that layers each sip with a multitude of flavours.
The limited-edition bottle will be available from selected retailers in the United States, Mexico and London in November for $1850. www.casadragones.com
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