What is the Test Kitchen?
The multifunctional Bouley Test Kitchen serves as an elegant event space, an interactive classroom, and a state-of-the-art culinary laboratory. Working with food constantly offers new challenges – dietary trends come and go, ingredients evolve with the climate, and our own desire to surpass our previous accomplishments pushes us to discover new techniques.
The Test Kitchen offers an arena for the Bouley team to develop and extend these advanced approaches to product selection, preparation, and presentation. One recipe can inspire 13 other sub-recipes. It’s a fast experimental pace. For example, a week’s worth of testing new breads under the guidance of a Meilleur Ouvrier de France (MOF) breadmaster from Tours resulted in 30 new items that will be utilized in Bouley’s flagship restaurant and catered events. The well crafted menus of Bouley and brushstroke stand as a testament to this spirit of experimentation.
As an educational center, the Bouley Test Kitchen provides a space for guests to learn from visiting chefs through classes and demonstrations. Instruction is provided for all aspects of food preparation – selecting the right ingredients, creating dishes that complement one another, and assembling a cohesive meal which can be recreated at home. As well as technique, classes focus on food education and culture. To help students become better acquainted with their cuisine, an analysis of each recipe’s nutritional components is presented. Guests also explore products that could be used for those with special dietary needs and allergies.
A 200-square-foot wall of slate allows David Bouley and his guest chefs to map handwritten recipes and chalk drawings of all possible menu items being tested in a given session. A library of more than 8,000 cookbooks provides inspiration as well as archives of past techniques. The Test Kitchen also features handcrafted Nautilus speakers and an emerald illuminated turntable powered by the McIntosh Sound System and equipment from artisanal industry leaders like Molteni, Koma, Rational, and Electrolux.