Biomimicry and the culinary arts

Edible flowers assist in the drinking of fine, palate-cleansing liqueurs. The group collaborated with cutting-edge Spanish chef Jose Andres at the margins of science and the culinary arts. Two of our biomimetic inventions are being explored and developed by his ThinkFood group.

Inspired by a family of floating flowers, the edible flower (image at right) provides a mean of drinking small volumes of fluid in an elegant fashion. Inspired by a means of propulsion used by a class of water-walking insects, cocktail boats (image below) propel themselves by generating a fore-aft chemical gradient.

Both designs developed by Lisa Burton and Nadia Cheng.
Paper: Burton, Cheng, Vega, Andres and Bush (2013)
Select press: Serious Eats , Nature News , Wired