Great food is a sensory exploration, bringing a person on a journey from first sight to the final bite. Yet sometimes, seeing a beautiful and lovingly prepared dish on the big screen is enough to make your mouth water.
You know it when you see it. Watch Keri Russel pour her heart and soul into every delectable pie she invents in Waitress (2007) without wanting to swipe a slice for later. Observe the sage-like and precise preparation of crimson and sunset-colored nigiri in Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2012) and tell me you aren’t ordering sushi immediately. Even in animation, it’s hard to watch food critic Anton Ego have his eureka moment in Ratatouille (2007) and not think of meals that pull you back to your childhood.
Food in these and other movies jump right off the screen to fuse with your imagination and memory forever. At the 2022 Devour! The Food Film Fest, audiences were invited to reimagine their relationship with the eating experience through a hand-picked selection of vivid dramas, documentaries, and short films centered around one of our favorite topics: food.
Hana Tsunomata® helped to sponsor the film screenings, special events, and workshops at this year’s festival and we had an incredible time. Here’s the inside scoop (for those who missed it and those who want second helpings) and why should mark your calendar next October for this one-of-a-kind event.
Food Films Focused on the Future
The 2022 Devour! Festival was held in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. Situated in Kings County, Wolfville was the perfect place to watch movies about food and drink. This region of the province is known for its bountiful agricultural, since its inhabitation by French Acadian farmers in the 17th century, and boutique wineries, thanks to the exceptional soil and climate conditions of the Eastern Annapolis Valley. It’s here that foodies, gourmands, filmmakers, chefs, celebrities, and cinephiles were treated to a host of films about the future of food over the week-long festival.
On opening night, the Al Whittle Theatre presented a documentary called Meat the Future (2020) about the innovators working to create real meat without the need to raise or slaughter animals. Jane Goodall’s narration carries power and hope while the food pioneers inspire in a story about how we can rethink the ways we use land and feed billions of people worldwide. As we’ve seen in our research, this type of approach to meat production might be one of the foods of the future that helps us create a more sustainable society.
That was only part of the focus of this year’s food film fest documentaries. From the spread of cyanobacteria due to chemical fertilizer runoff to the account of real-life of organic farmers, these stories educated the audience about opportunities for the future of food production.
The spotlight of the event was Love, Charlie, The Rise and Fall of Chef Charlie Trotter (2021), an exploration of the meteoric rise and complicated legacy of celebrity chef Charlie Trotter. This retelling of Trotter’s life story from the people who knew him best was an excellent cornerstone of the whole festival.
Getting Hands-On with Plant-Based Cuisine
It wouldn’t be the Devour! Food Film Fest without plenty of cuisine-related workshops on the future of food. One of Canada’s own creative culinary minds, Chef Jason Bangerter, led a plant-forward cooking workshop with our Hana Tsunomata® product as a key ingredients. Chef Jason used our vivid, tricolor seaweed to bring to life the exemplary flavors of beets and berries in one of his showcased dishes.
Attendees really loved seeing this seaweed-infused dish and his plant-cured tuna and trying some of the dishes themselves. Those who were new to our Hana Tsunomata® seaweed were captivated by the way this product could complement a range of dining experiences, either as a moist morsel in its rehydrated form or as a satisfying crunch when left dehydrated.
“Chef Jason does incredible work with our Hana Tsunomata® products,” said Holly Reardon, Brand Strategist at Acadian Seaplants. “More than adding beautiful colors to each dish, he brings out the range of our seaweed while also creating dishes that are halal and kosher. He’s been a phenomenal advocate for our shelf-stable product as a commercial kitchen staple.”
Stay Tuned for Next Year’s Food Film Festival
As always, we loved spending time with fellow food lovers and to spread the word about our Hana Tsunomata products. If you didn’t make the festival this year or are already craving another fix of food-centric films, keep the Devour! Food Film Fest on your calendar for next October. They’ll be exploring the culture and dishes of Acadian, Cajun and French cuisine, showing how these incredible foods converge and create an evolving food tradition all their own. Whether on the big screen or in one of the chef workshops, we know we’ll continue to make more food memories that last a lifetime.
Want to learn more about the seaweed that made a splash at the 2022 Devour! Food Film Fest? You can experience our Hana Tsunomata® products here!