This pop-up event in Saudi Arabia used molten lava to cook food for diners.
The unbelievable scene was produced by experimental creatives at London-based Bompas & Parr studio, utilizing research from a leading expert in molten rock, Professor Robert Wysocki of Syracuse University in the U.S.
Guests were seated in The Shlal Canyon at AlUla and served dishes of local produce, seared using the intense 2,462°F (1,350°C) heat of lava channeled from a volcano.
For 700 SAR ($186) per person, the menu featured whole salt-baked celeriac, charred fillets of beef finished across molten lava, and pit-roasted saddles of goat grilled across fire pits.
As an ode to the setting, dessert included a chocolate lava cake “oozing in the middle,” while drinks included smoked, flamed, and charred mocktails.
Coffee and tea, heated table-side by the lava, were also available.
“Drawing on the raw power of nature, the Forces of Nature set menus, prepared by our expert pit-masters, were inspired by the origins of cooking on open flames,” said a rep.
Bompas & Parr is known worldwide for its expertise in multi-sensory experience design and extreme science cooking.
Their previous projects have included a glow-in-the-dark, alcoholic jello made for Mark Ronson’s 33rd birthday party and a Willy Wonka-style chewing gum that changed flavor as it was chewed.
Their next groundbreaking dining experience will be a “cutting-edge, 360-immersive digital dining room” named Incense Road.
The project is set to give viewers a multi-sensory insight into the ancient trade routes that connected much of ancient Africa, the Middle East, India, the Mediterranean, and beyond around 2,000 years ago.
The team has collaborated with curators and historical researchers to transport visitors to the time when the regions were bustling with merchants trading frankincense, spices, precious, stones, fine textiles, and other luxuries—with a menu involving Memphis-style cardamom-spiced chicken and cinnamon-infused chocolate Trajan coins. Sign us up.
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