We often think of food as something we need to survive or some task in the schedule of the day that must get done. The problem is that we forget what we desire. What we all truly desire when it comes to food is an experience. An experience where all your senses are overloading with excitement. The colors, the smells, the flavors….

One of the most important lessons I was taught as a young culinarian is that you eat with your eyes first. That powerful lesson has pushed me to create dishes that not only excite the palate but also the eyes. In the early 70s a study was completed to help prove the concept of eating with your eyes first. The study showed that those that ate a meal that was presented in an artistic way not only enjoyed their meal more but also their body absorbed more calories. Food is more than just flavor or smell. It is a medium for artwork. The painter has his brush. The chef has his knife.

“The Culinary ARTS is where food goes from just ingredients to beautiful creations of colors, shapes and textures.”

“Cooking is like painting or writing a song. Just as there are only so many notes or colors, there are only so many flavors – it’s how you combine them that sets you apart.”

– Wolfgang Puck

Bringing the culinary arts to senior care is one of the highest of honors. It is sometimes a scary time for a senior to leave everything they have known for so many years and move into a new community. They may feel as if they have lost so much independence and for those strong willed that must now depend on others to help with every task. This is where chefs have the opportunity to step in and build a relationship through our knowledge and passion for food. We are able to take classic dishes and family favorites and turn them into beautiful works of art to help our residents understand how important they are. In our hardest of times we look to food for comfort. At the end of the day we all deserve a great experience, so take that extra time a create a work of art.

Aaron Burke is the Director of Dining / Executive Chef at Melody Living. Aaron has worked in the F&B industry 15 plus years and Has his Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management degree from Le Cordon Bleu.