Fable Diner & Bar organizes Blindfolded Dining in the Dark event

A unique blindfold dining concept that began in Switzerland more than two decades ago is coming to Vancouver next week as a discovery experience.

Hosted by Fable Diner & Bar (755 Richards Street) for three nights, the Dining in the Dark event promises to “take your meal to a whole new level,” according to Fable’s website.

The event is led by Fever, which describes itself as “the leading global platform for discovering live entertainment”. The company produces events with tickets in dozens of international cities.

The experience – where diners are led into a dark room lit only by candles, then blindfolded and served a three-course meal – should have the diners’ senses of taste and smell take over after their sight is removed and intensify the dining experience.

According to Fever, that magnification/compensation should benefit the 80 percent of people who “eat with their eyes.”

Perhaps ironically, the whole ‘dark dining’ movement started out as an experience to give sighted people an insight into the daily reality of the blind and partially sighted.

Fever/Santiago Santamaria Soler

A blind Swiss pastor, Reverend Jorge Spielmann, opened a dark restaurant, The Blind Cow, in Zurich in 1999, after hosting similar dinners for friends at his home. Although the restaurant, in a disused church, was initially designed as a facility for the blind and employed nearly all of the blind staff, it became popular with sighted people for the learning experience.

Spielmann encouraged that aspect of his venture, and the restaurant’s subsequent popularity sparked similar projects around the world. Berlin, New York, San Francisco and many other cities soon had dark eateries. In Canada, restaurants such as O.Noir and Dark Table have opened in several cities (there is a Dark Table in the Kitsilano neighborhood of Vancouver, at 2611 West 4th Avenue).

The eating concept is now mainly praised for its sensory appeal in terms of enjoying taste components and the realization of the role eyes play in terms of how food is experienced.

A fever

At Fable Diner & Bar, the three Dining in the Dark evenings will only take place on Wednesday evenings, on June 29, July 6 and July 27. Tickets are $80; go here to reserve a spot.

Diners can choose from one of three menus (although the actual dishes and ingredients are kept secret): Green (vegan), Blue (seafood), and Red (meat). They all have an appetizer, a main course and a dessert, and contain descriptions such as “will surprise you”, “flavors you know and love, presented in surprising textures”, and “a combination of sweet and savory that will blow your mind.” make a spin”. †

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