We eat first with our eyes… Experimental psychologists at the University of Oxford decided to see what impact a plate of salad arranged like an abstract painting would have on 60 diners’ perception of the food.
One group of diners was offered a salad arranged like Wassily Kandinsky’s “Painting number 201.” Another group was given a salad featuring broccoli sprouts, Portobello mushroom slices and snow peas lined up in neat rows. The last group was offered a typical pile of salad arranged in the middle of a plate. Each salad had identical ingredients, dressing and condiments.
The Kandinsky salad was rated the best — by an 18 percent margin over the other two presentations. Most importantly for restaurateurs, diners were willing to pay twice as much – both before and after eating it… The diners were not told that the Kandinsky-esque salad was designed to look like a painting.