- May 30, 2016

Here’s How You Can Make a Culinary Lab in Austin a Reality

Austin’s place as a culinary hot spot could get even hotter soon if a new food center and laboratory gets the support that it needs to open its doors. Chef Sergio Perera and fermentation specialist Jason White are set to open Arrel, a “food innovation hub and collaborative workshop, a gastronomic platform for research and development,” according to the project’s Kickstarter page. The center will offer a variety of classes and workshops, tastings, innovative dinners, fermentation and wild food programs, a collaborative workspace, and more.

Arrel means roots in Catalan, and both chefs involved with the project have some pretty strong roots on which they are building. Perera has trained with some of the culinary world’s heaviest hitters in molecular gastronomy including Wiley Dufresne and Ludo Lefebvre, while White set up the fermentation program at Emmer & Rye and is now working with L’Oca D’Oro, according to Eater Austin.

Currently the campaign has a way to go toward reaching its $60,000 goal by July 3rd, but those interesting in supporting it will buy their way into special tastings and VIP dinners, depending on their levels of support.

Arrel will call the St. Elmo Public Market just off South Congress home, with plans to open doors in 2018, if all goes well with construction.

From the Kickstarter project description:

“Arrel is a gastronomic platform of research and development, creating and documenting discoveries that will revolutionize our methods of farming, culinary education, hospitality, dining concepts and creativity which define and preserve gastronomy. Our cooking is a collision of ideas, cultures, techniques and gestures. We think hard about the origins of our ingredients and foster deep relationships with our producers and artisans while also working with them to produce advanced, sustainable and ecological results. There is more to be learned from the people who raise, catch and grow the food we prepare.

“With respect to tradition, we move forward with technology and investigation of old and new ingredients by bringing together cooks, architects, designers, farmers and scientists to work with each other and advance our gastronomic practices to share knowledge throughout the world. We honor the past while building the future. Food and culture is what gives us our identity, our gateway to create and revolutionize new ideas that will nourish our bodies, our minds and our land.”

Featured photo courtesy Arrel’s Kickstarter page

H/T Eater Austin