On Fire: Culture | Passion | Invention: Europe and the Americas
Driving discovery, crafting strategy, and building community in an era of limitless possibilities
Download a PDF of the 2016 Worlds of Flavor Program Booklet here, complete with the themes and presenters of all general sessions, kitchen workshops, and seminars. Download the Conference Program Booklet here. All conference recipes can be downloaded using the link to the right. Recipes are password protected and available for conference attendees only.
As chefs around the world look to the future, sources of inspiration for culinary identity, menu concepts, and flavor discovery are limitless. Much of this inspiration revolves around new dynamics, new possibilities bridging tradition and invention.
Vibrant, global food cultures draw strength and motion from the passion of their most talented cooks and from communities who embrace excellence in craftsmanship. At the same time, pioneering chefs in established food capitals push the frontiers of the customer experience.
Old silos are breaking down between “high” and “low,” “fast” and “slow,” as chefs extend their reach and build new businesses. Street foods move onto upscale restaurant menus, and top chefs move into QSR and fast casual. Cultural and flavor hybrids entice the adventurous palates of Millennials and engage us all in considering what works, and what doesn’t.
Navigating this changing landscape of opportunity, today’s chefs are challenged as never before to build and grow their personal visions, their artistic, entrepreneurial identities, and new strategies in ways that are mindful of the breadth of these choices. The Culinary Institute of America’s 18th Annual Worlds of Flavor International Conference & Festival presents the insights and personal journeys of influential chefs from Europe, Latin America, and the United States, as we learn how they found their voice in this conversation about tradition and invention, who influenced them, and what is shaping their culinary vision for the future. Bulletins from the field flesh out this story:
- As a strong chef-driven culinary revolution sweeps Latin America, chefs all over the continent are rediscovering and elevating native ingredients and centuries-old culinary techniques in stylized contemporary restaurants.
- From France and Spain to Italy, chefs are creatively balancing tradition and nuances of invention, style and accessibility, and global influences and local ingredients as they work to craft next-generation European flavors.
- American chefs—from New York to California, and from the Pacific Northwest and Chicago to the American South—are transforming our restaurant sector in a resurgence of personal vision.
Complementing the singularity of individual, chef-centric creativity, the conference also explores the vital role of community—in professional kitchens, with customers, and among chefs, traditional cooks, and cultural experts—in sustaining passion and supporting excellence. Our theme of community will extend to the conference’s extensive tastings and World Marketplace, highlighting collaborative pairings of chefs and relationships of inspiration.
In 2016, we took a deep dive into the design of modern culinary vision and strategy, and signal concepts to watch in Europe, Latin America, and the United States that reframe the story of old and new.