I’ve got to know about him around the Dutch Design Week last year, when I wrote a piece about him on Trend Tablet. A little while later I got to meet him when he published his first book. Now he is back with something new and excited and I was the lucky ray of sunshine that got to experience it. Of course I am talking about nobody less than Creative Chef, Jasper Udink ten Cate with his very own taste museum.

Saturday’s aren’t meant for work of course, but when you get a creative invite to come and taste food at the SmaakMuseum, working weekends don’t sound so bad all of a sudden. So saturday morning on my way to Odijk, say where now?, with little to no idea what to expect. The invite came with some seeds and said “are you ready to taste historical flavors, colors, textures and scents in SmaakMuseum’s pop-up restaurant”?. You had me at taste already though.

Het  SmaakMuseum, is an agricultural place where historic vegetables and fruits are grown for people to see, experience and taste. The museum is divided into a museumgarden where the seeds and products are being tried out in small numbers, to possibly grown them in larger orders when they satisfy topchef Jasper. The museum garden is classiefied as a compass whereby the area stands for the Netherlands. So Southern crops are in the bottom of the Garden, while for example Rotterdamse beets are in the East.

An edible museum where old plant varieties, old cooking techniques and old preparations can be tasted. The plants vary from 1850 till now, the museum garden gives people the opportunity to experience how food tasted back in the days and what our original food culture really holds. The main goal of this museum is creating awareness regarding real food, taste, culture and biodiversity, shortly said food education.

SmaakMuseum is the embodiment of our Modern Heritage trend were we embrace old customs and habits and translate them into current Zeitgeist. I believe this need for heritage is a due to extreme rural times our world experiencing now. We are grabbing back to better times, trying to scrupulous to go back to pure times. Moreover, the SmaakMuseum is responding to a trend called back to nature, where we are seeking for natural products, cutting out all the artificial substance in life. A trend which is driven to our rapid succession of innovations which sometimes scares people. Lastely I love the lateral learning aspect of this new concept, because how many people, in particular children, now the through origin of food.

If you want to have a look yourself, you can find the museum on the Bijenakkerin Odijk, if you want to enjoy the lovely food of Jasper, make sure you reserve a spot.
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