Starring Food: Experimental Cuisine Collective Offers Day-Long Symposium on May 16th

The Experimental Cuisine Collective, an interdisciplinary group founded to examine the properties, boundaries, and conventions of food, celebrates its fourth anniversary with a day-long symposium, “Experimental Cuisine: Foundation to Innovation,” on Monday, May 16, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at NYU’s School of Law, Lipton Hall (108 W. Third Street, between MacDougal and Sullivan Streets).

The event, with sessions ranging from “From the Tongue to the Brain: The Biology of Mammalian Taste” to “The Modernist Saucier,” is free and open to the public. Seating is based on availability. RSVP (required) at: For more information, call 908.943.8272 or email For a complete schedule of speakers and sessions, click here.

Speakers will include: Columbia University Biochemistry Professor Charles Zuker; David Arnold, director of technology at the French Culinary Institute and author of the blog Cooking Issues; chefs Maxime Bilet, co-author of Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking, and Grant Crilly, one of the book’s development chefs; and Michael Laiskonis, executive pastry chef at Le Bernardin; Jeffrey Steingarten, food critic at Vogue and one of the first people to write about experimental cooking; and Lisa Abend, author of The Sorcerer’s Apprentices: A Season in the Kitchen at Ferran Adria’s elBulli.

About ECC

The Experimental Cuisine Collective, founded by NYU Professors Kent Kirshenbaum and Amy Bentley and chef Will Goldfarb, is a working group that assembles scholars, scientists, chefs, writers, journalists, performance artists, and food enthusiasts. Its overall aim is to develop a broad-based and rigorous academic approach that employs techniques and approaches from both the humanities and sciences to examine the properties, boundaries, and conventions of food. Since launching in April 2007, the ECC has been meeting monthly, hosting speakers such as Ferran Adrià, Hervé This, Marion Nestle, Dan Barber, Corby Kummer, Johnny Iuzzini, Colman Andrews, Andreas Viestad, Rose Levy Berenbaum, Nathalie Jeremijenko, Michael Ruhlman, and scientists from Princeton, the Monell Chemical Senses Center, and the University of Maryland, among others. The group now comprises close to 1800 members.

In March 2008, The ECC was featured in Time’s “10 Ideas That Are Changing the World,” as part of No. 5, “Kitchen Chemistry”. The launch of the ECC also appeared on the magazine’s timeline of modern cooking. ECC co-founders Kent Kirshenbaum and Will Goldfarb filmed several of Ted Allen’s Food Network show, “Food Detectives,” and appeared throughout the spring 2009 season. Chemical & Engineering News, which reaches over 100,000 chemists globally, has covered the work of the ECC, as has NPR’s Science Friday. Kirshenbaum, Goldfarb and ECC director Anne E. McBride have been guests of the Leonard Lopate Show on WNYC, NPR’s affiliate.

For more information on the Experimental Cuisine Collective or the anniversary symposium, contact or visit